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Entries for April 2014

23
Are Americans Making a Transportation Shift? Maybe, Maybe Not

Scarcely a week seems to pass without a  new study or news story heralding a huge shift in how Americans are travelling. The number of miles each person drives annually has fallen each year since 2005. Americans took more than 10 billion trips by public transportation in 2013, the most since 1956. Since 2000, the number of regular bike commuters in the U.S. has risen by 61 percent. Zero-vehicle households are on the rise.

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22
McDowell Lee, Nation’s Longest Serving Legislative Secretary, Dies at 89

McDowell Lee, former secretary of the Alabama Senate, passed away last Thursday. Mac Lee, or Mr. Lee as I called him, was the longest serving clerk or secretary in America’s state legislatures. Before he retired in early 2011, Lee served as secretary for 47 years. He was first elected to the position in 1963. 

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22

The Legislative Summit in Minneapolis is coming up in August, and I hope you plan to attend. NCSL is the only organization that gives legislative staff a strong voice and many opportunities to grow professionally and connect with colleagues across the country.

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22
NCSL President Bruce Starr's Message to Legislators

At NCSL, we keep our eye on Congress every day.  Our staff in Washington, D.C., is on the hill to fight for the goals we all share--no unfunded mandates and preemptions, and the preservation of our states’ authority. But we depend on you.

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Category: Legislators, NCSL
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22
New Hampshire House Speaker Terie Norelli Not Seeking Re-election

After 18 years in the New Hampshire House, including three terms as speaker, Terie Norelli announced  Monday that she would not seek re-election in 2014.

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18
ACA Outreach and Enrollment: It's Not All on the States

In the run-up to the March 31 open enrollment deadline, many states, the federal government, nonprofits, and others were on a mission: educate Americans about new health coverage options and help the eligible sign up for coverage. Although we’re still awaiting final enrollment numbers, it is safe to say that enrollment experiences have varied significantly across states—regardless of who is running the health insurance exchange.

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Category: Public Policy
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17
Bill Behnk, Legislative Computer Pioneer, Has Died

Bill Behnk, former Coordinator of Legislative Information Systems for the Office of Legislative Counsel in California, and a longtime member and enthusiastic supporter of NCSL and the National Association of Legislative Information Technology (NALIT), died April 8. He was 87.

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16
Webinar Examines Energy Diversity, Reliability and Risk

Do the rapid changes we are seeing in energy resources pose a threat to the stability and reliability of our electric grid? What risks do extreme weather events, such as the polar vortex, pose to our ability to heat and cool our homes, or run our businesses, during these critical times?

 

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15
Spring Is Convening While Most Legislatures Are Adjourning

Spring flowers are starting to bloom. Birds are chirping. Glorious sunshine is ushering out any last signs of winter. In other words, Spring has convened! And, by the time the air becomes permanently warm, most state legislatures will have adjourned.    

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Category: Legislators
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14
Minnesota Raises Its Minimum Wages

Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton signed a bill today that adopted increases to the state’s minimum wages. Yes, that’s right. Minimum wages, as in plural.

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Category: Public Policy
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About the NCSL Blog

This blog offers updates on the National Conference of State Legislatures' research and training, the latest on federalism and the state legislative institution, and posts about state legislators and legislative staff. The blog is edited by NCSL staff and written primarily by NCSL's experts on public policy and the state legislative institution.

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