Table of Contents | State Legislatures | March 2016

3/1/2016

VOLUME 42, No. 3

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Features

March 2016 State Legislatures coverTACKLING TUITION
By Roger Fillion
Lawmakers continue to seek ways to help students and families as the cost of college soars.

A DEGREE OF SAVINGS
By Jessica Hathaway
Savings accounts dedicated to paying for college can help take the sting out of increasing tuitions and encourage the habit of saving.

LOCKED OUT!
By Anne Teigen
Today’s ignition interlock systems, along with better monitoring and stricter penalties, are keeping drunken drivers off our roads.

CIVIC EDUCATION, CYBER-STYLE
With its Capitol Classroom program, the Virginia General Assembly makes learning about government fun.

DEPARTMENTS

SHORT TAKES ON NCSL NEWS
Legislative leaders travel to the United Arab Emirates to learn about the country's nuclear program ★ Maine's Joint Education Standing Committee spends "A Day in the Life" with local school principals ★ NCSL facilitates a meeting of the Indian Country Energy and Infrastructure Working Group.

STATESTATS
Every state improved in at least five of 42 specific health indicators used by The Commonwealth Fund to measure state health system performance.

NEWSMAKERS: WHAT LAWMAKERS ARE DOING AND SAYING
Utah legislators weigh in on rivalry between Brigham Young University and the University of Utah ★ Louisiana House Republicans break with tradition and refuse the governor’s pick for speaker ★ Missouri and Virginia senators remove reporters from their chamber floors ★ Mississippi House Republicans win supermajority ★ Kentucky House Dems maintain their majority.

TRENDS IN STATE POLICY NEWS
Avoiding Two-Wheel Tangles:Several states adopt safe-passing laws to help keep bicyclists safe on the roads.

When It’s OK to Break and Enter: New laws protect those who act to save children and animals left unattended in hot cars.

Dental Dilemma: The challenge of finding a dentist who participates in Medicaid.

Treasure in the Trees: Policymakers are protecting forestlands from disease, development and other threats to maximize their economic and environmental benefits. 

STATELINE: LEGISLATIVE NEWS IN BRIEF
Louisiana is the first state in the Deep South to accept Medicaid funding ★ Illinois lawmakers debate the use of cellphone trackers, or “Stingrays” ★ North Carolina adds more Tar Heels ★ New Jersey considers limiting public access to police video and audio recordings.

YES, NO, MAYBE SO
Ethics in world of state government: An opponent posts a derogatory and misleading comment about you on social media. You need to set the record straight. How do you respond? 

WHAT STAFF KNOW
Three things legal staff want you to know about their role in the legislative process.

THE FINAL WORD
Meet Vincent Prieto, Speaker of the New Jersey General Assembly
“If an elephant has a good memory, I have a five-elephant memory.”