NCSL in the News | August 2017

8/1/2017

Aug. 31

After the rush to use public money on private schools, now we wait. 
Chicago Tribune
Illinois’ annual available tax-credits will be capped at $75 million a year, yes, but that’s among the largest limits, even per capita, of all such state programs, according to National Conference of State Legislatures research.

Indiana Secretary of State: No link between early voting access and turnout. Dems: Get real 
Indianapolis Star 
However, Wendy Underhill, a representative from the nonpartisan National Conference of State Legislators, echoed Lawson's sentiment that the statistics don't confirm a correlation. 

Supreme Court case delays action on Cheyenne LGBTQ ordinance 
Wyoming Tribune 
Eighteen states, including Colorado and Utah, have added sexual orientation and gender identity to their nondiscrimination laws, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. 

Local vo-tech program gets deserved recognition
Albuquerque Journal Editorial Board
It is the perfect example of what the National Conference of State Legislatures says is an essential plank needed to build a world-class education system – “a highly effective, intellectually rigorous system of career and technical education … available to those preferring an applied education.”

Income Inequality in Wisconsin At Highest Level Since Great Depression
Wisconsin Public Radio Network
The National Conference of State Legislatures lists 29 states with a minimum wage higher than the federal minimum of $7.25 per hour, including Minnesota and Michigan.

Funding Slashed for Teen Pregnancy Prevention 
Indian Country Today Media Network 
TPP has won accolades from many organizations, including the National Conference of State Legislatures, which wrote in 2016: “The Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program (TPP), administered by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Office of Adolescent Health, is among the first examples of federal evidence-based policymaking.” 

Aug. 30

State sues to defend new law requiring out-of-state retailers to pay
Indianapolis Business Journal
And the National Conference of State Legislatures has estimated Indiana could be losing about $400 million annually.

After the rush job to use public money on private schools, now we wait
Chicago Tribune
Illinois’ annual available tax-credits will be capped at $75 million a year, yes, but that’s among the largest limits, even per capita, of all such state programs, according to National Conference of State Legislatures research. 

Redistricting mustn’t be political process
Lincoln Journal Star
Seven states have commissions with primary responsibility for drawing updating districts with new decennial Census data, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures, while seven more have advisory or backup entities.

City election date debated by North Dakota lawmakers
The Bismarck Tribune
Wendy Underhill, program manager for the National Conference of State Legislatures, said "most states either set municipal elections sometime other than the fall, or do not mandate across all jurisdictions when they are to hold their municipal elections,” according to 2014 testimony cited by Legislative Council.

Children from Southern Pa. lobby on Capitol Hill for continued coverage
Wilkes Barre Times-Leader
In Pennsylvania, 34 percent of the state’s residents are insured under Medicaid and Medicare, according to the National Conference of State Legislators.

FlitWays Launches Non-Emergency Medical Transportation
SYS-CON Media
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, "Medicaid funds are the single largest transfer of federal money to states, representing an average of 44 percent of all federal revenue received. The transportation component is about $3 billion of that yearly fund transfer."

National State Legislature Observer Says Lowering Campaign Contributions Differs From National Trend
SDPB Radio
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, the amount of money an individual can give to candidates running for state office is on average $2,000 to $3,000 lower than the national average.

Aug. 29

South Dakota seeks overturn of high court sales tax decision
Washington Post
Republican state Sen. Deb Peters, who sponsored the South Dakota law, said she grew tired of waiting for Congress to act. She said accounting technology has changed at "warp speed," allowing businesses to collect taxes in jurisdictions nationwide as people's purchasing habits have shifted.

Worth Another Look: Affordability of Higher Education
JD Supra
In January of 2017, the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) published a list of the top 10 issues that will be before state legislatures across the nation this year.

Legislator says study trips worthwhile
The Advocate
I informed her that I was selected by National Conference of State Legislatures as an Early Learning's Fellow which required that at least two meetings be attended.

Bill aimed at saving lives takes effect Monday
ABC 17 News
At least 37 other states have enacted some form of immunity or good Samaritan law, according to the National Council of State Legislatures.

Conference of State Legislatures asks to de-schedule cannabis
The Leaf Online
The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) annual conference approved a resolution August 7 urging that the federal Controlled Substances Act be amended to remove marijuana from drug scheduling so as to give federally approved banks the ability to work with marijuana businesses.

Aug. 28

Government accountability task force to meet in Pierre
U.S. News & World Report
The group is set to hear from the secretary of state's office and the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Questions abound about leaving home to heirs
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Since many older adults want to stay in their homes, or “age in place,” according to a report from the AARP Public Policy Institute and the National Conference of State Legislatures, they may opt to make a gift of their home to someone instead of cashing out and downsizing.

Another blow to voter-ID laws – and the Trump Justice Department
The Oakland Press
As of last month, eight states and the District of Columbia have authorized automatic voter registration

Kentucky Wood Expo is Sept. 13-18
Lexington Herald Leader
National Conference of State Legislatures, Research, Editorial, Legal and Committee Staff 2017 Meeting: Sept. 24-28, Hilton Lexington/Downtown, 150.
 
Equitable online sales tax needed
The Spokesman-Review
“Whatever a state is getting in sales tax from Amazon, it should probably be getting about twice that much,” said Max Behlke, director of budget and tax policy for the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Is college education worth it?
Tribune-Review
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, “when considering all first-time undergraduates, studies have found anywhere from 28 percent to 40 percent of students enroll in at least one remedial course. 
 
Lawmakers wrestling with public response to drones
Wicked Local Saugus
The drone discussion took place at a panel organized by the National Conference of State Legislatures, which met at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center this month.

Aug. 25

Estate Planning: Leaving a Home to Heirs While You're Still Alive
New York Times
Since many older adults want to stay in their homes, or “age in place,” according to a report from the AARP Public Policy Institute and the National Conference of State Legislatures, they may opt to make a gift of their home to someone instead of cashing out and downsizing.

Another blow to voter-ID laws – and the Trump Justice Department
Washington Post
The National Conference of State Legislatures explained, “By registering through a routine and necessary transaction, voters won’t have to worry about registration deadlines or application submissions. 

Colorado rapists are avoiding prison sentences because of a bad law 
The Denver Post
On Wednesday the committee heard from the National Conference of State Legislatures about how various states handle their sentencing in their statutes. 

Transportation group advocates for federal self-driving legislation
New Hampshire Business Review
Last month, the National Governor’s Association, National Conference of State Legislatures, American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators and Governors Highway Safety Association wrote a letter to the bill’s authors and chairman and ranking member of the House committee regarding their concerns.

Worth Another Look: Fending Off Cyberattacks
JD Supra
In January of 2017, the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) published a list of the top 10 issues that will be before state legislatures across the nation this year. 

Action in Kansas fuels suppression fears
NWAOnline
Fifteen states, plus the District of Columbia, also allow people to register and cast a ballot on the same day, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. 

 

Families seek involuntary commitment laws as key tool in saving opioid addicts: 
USA Today
“There’s just not enough treatment beds anywhere,” said Karem Hanson, a health policy analyst for the National Conference of State Legislatures. “Every state is facing a shortage. If everyone was to coming knocking on the door for treatment, they wouldn’t know where to put everybody.”

Colorado rapists are avoiding prison sentences because of a bad law
The Denver Post
On Wednesday the committee heard from the National Conference of State Legislatures about how various states handle their sentencing in their statutes. Pursuing criminal justice requires a balancing act of punishment and reform, deterrence and treatment. The committee is in a good place to try and bring balance to Colorado’s laws regarding sentencing for sex offenders, and we hope they take on the challenge.

Kansas discarded disproportionate number of ballots in 2016
Press Herald
Fifteen states, plus the District of Columbia, also allow people to register and cast a ballot on the same day, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Heavy Turnover Expected at Statehouse
Alton Daily News
According to the National Council of State Legislatures, 15 states have at least one form of term limits.  
 
Lawmaker wants to tax e-cigarettes and vape products
WZZM
Seven states and Washington, D.C. tax e-cigarettes and vape products, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Aug. 23

Uncounted Kansas ballots fuel fears about Kobach's proposals
Washington Post
Fifteen states, plus the District of Columbia, also allow people to register and cast a ballot on the same day, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Kobach derailed a bill during the last legislative session that would have instituted same-day registration in Kansas.

Free college keeps growing as Arkansas, Indiana, Montana and Rhode Island join in
CNBC
Other states, including Minnesota, Oregon and Tennessee, already have programs, and 13 more introduced legislation this year to start similar initiatives, according to Dustin Weeden, a senior policy specialist at the National Conference of State Legislatures.

As transportation tech hits new age, New Mexico lags behind
New Mexico Political Report
New Mexico is already behind many states in debating legislation on autonomous vehicles. Since 2012, 41 states and Washington D.C. have considered legislation related to autonomous vehicles. Of those, 20 states (and Washington D.C.) have passed laws, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures, an organization that tracks legislative efforts nationwide.
 
Speed up EFSEC
Longview Daily News
“Whatever a state is getting in sales tax from Amazon, it should probably be getting about twice that much,” said Max Behlke, director of budget and tax policy for the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Loophole Allows Sex Offenders to Live Next Door to Victims in NC
WFMY News 2
Danyelle Dyer soon discovered that what Harold Dwayne English did in June is perfectly legal in the state -- as well as in 44 others that don't specifically bar sex offenders from living near their victims, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 

Aug. 22

10 Things to Know for Monday
ABC News
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, there are 45 states that don't specifically bar convicted sex offenders from living near their victims.

Sex offenders can live next door to victims in 45 states because of a loophole
CBS News
Danyelle Dyer soon discovered that what Harold Dwayne English did in June is perfectly legal in the state -- as well as in 44 others that don't specifically bar sex offenders from living near their victims, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Summertime Still Means Work for SD Legislators
Yankton Daily Press
At our first meeting we received material comparing current and prior campaign finance laws with the provisions of IM-22, and material from the National Conference of State Legislatures regarding campaign finance laws in other states.
 
Breast-Feeding Teachers Struggle to Find Spaces, Time to Pump Milk
Education Week
Twenty-eight states and the District of Columbia currently have leaws related to breast-feeding in the workplace, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 

Aug. 21

South Dakota Ballot Measure Would Let People Vote at Home
U.S. News & World Report
At least 22 states allow some elections to be conducted entirely by mail, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Deadly Police Encounters in California Left 163 Dead in 2016
U.S. News & World Report
Colorado requires every police shooting be reported, and Connecticut tracks every incident of serious force, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Sex offenders can live next door to victims in many states
Washington Post
Danyelle Dyer soon discovered that what Harold Dwayne English did in June is perfectly legal in the state — as well as in 44 others that don’t specifically bar sex offenders from living near their victims, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

These states have introduced bills to protect drivers who run over protestors
CNN
Lawmakers in North Dakota, North Carolina, Florida, Tennessee and Texas proposed bills that would make it legal for drivers to hit protesters if the driver did not do so willfully, according to Mick Bullock, a spokesman for the National Conference of State Legislatures.

State sales tax equity remains unsolved issue
Walla Walla Union-Bulletin
“Whatever a state is getting in sales tax from Amazon, it should probably be getting about twice that much,” said Max Behlke, director of budget and tax policy for the National Conference of State Legislatures. 

Trump’s bruising tweet highlights Amazon’s lingering tax fight
The Keene Sentinel
Largely because of that ruling, which predated the rise of widespread online retailing, states miss out on $23.3 billion a year in sales taxes from online and catalog purchases, according to a 2012 finding by the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Hanger receives national recognition for mental health advocacy
Augusta Free Press
State Sen. Emmett Hanger (R-Augusta County) was honored by the national organization Mental Health America at the National Conference of State Legislatures’ annual meeting held recently in Boston. 

Black political influence in Mississippi has slowed despite increase in elected officials
Jackson Clarion Ledger
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, 28 percent of the Mississippi Legislature was comprised of African-American members as of 2015

Don’t cut teen pregnancy prevention funding
Jackson Clarion Ledger
As the National Conference of State Legislators reported in 2015, reducing teen pregnancies can save Mississippi and every state hundreds of millions of dollars.
 
Children lobbying for health care
Pocono Record
In Pennsylvania, 34 percent of the state’s residents are insured under Medicaid and Medicare, according to the National Conference of State Legislators.

Medical marijuana bill on its way to Indiana legislature – and a Republican is behind it. 
WHAS 
Twenty-nine other states have enacted comprehensive medical marijuana programs, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 

Aug. 18

157 people killed by police in California in 2016
Modesto Bee
Few other states collect such comprehensive data. Texas requires the attorney general to track statistics on officer-caused and officer-sustained injuries and death, Colorado requires every police shooting be reported and Connecticut tracks every incident of serious force, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Amazon Fights $12.5M Tax Bill on Third-Party Marketplace Sales
Bloomberg BNA
Amazon may incur significant tax liability in South Carolina should the state prevail—however, the case also has implications in other jurisdictions seeking to boost tax revenues, said Max Behlke, director of budget and tax for the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) in Washington, D.C. Behlke told Bloomberg BNA Aug. 16 that other marketplace providers such as eBay Inc., Etsy Inc., and Alibaba.com also could be impacted.

Possession of Small Amounts of Narcotics Now Minor Offense in Oregon
U.S. News & World Report
Oregon joins at least nine other states that have reduced penalties or the class of offenses for possession of non-marijuana drugs, according to data compiled by the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Medical marijuana backers in Utah launch signature-gathering campaign
Salt Lake Tribune
Washington, D.C., and 29 states — including states bordering Utah such as Nevada, Arizona and Colorado — had legalized medical marijuana in some form as of July, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Medical marijuana bill on its way to Indiana legislature – and a Republican is behind it.
Indianapolis Star
But the law stopped far short of full-blown legalization of marijuana for medical purposes. Twenty-nine other states have enacted comprehensive medical marijuana programs, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Nike’s Knight gives record $500K to Buehler for Governor
Bend Bulletin
Oregon is one of six states that have no limits on any kind of state campaign contributions by individuals, corporations, groups or political action committees, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Aug. 17

Possession of small amounts of narcotics now minor offense in Oregon
Reuters
Oregon joins at least nine other states that have reduced penalties or the class of offenses for possession of non-marijuana drugs, according to data compiled by the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
On a chaotic day in DC, Trump goes after Amazon, again
AP - ABC News
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, South Carolina was among 10 states that initially gave Amazon a temporary tax reprieve in exchange for jobs and investment, voting in 2011 to give the company until the beginning of 2016 before the state levied taxes. Max Behlke, who has been tracking this issue for the conference, told AP Wednesday that dozens of states have been grappling with how to collect taxes from entities like Amazon, with several heading to court over it in recent years. As for the South Carolina case, Behlke said it could lead to more actions elsewhere.

Rep. Orwall to co-chair national Military and Veterans Task Force
Kent Reporter
The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) has selected Speaker Pro-Tem Tina Orwall, D-Des Moines, as co-chair of the Military & Veterans Affairs Task Force.

Texas ‘bathroom bill’ collapses again amid Republican acrimony
The Guardian
Amid this drastic attitude shift in the White House, 16 states have considered bathroom bills in 2017, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 

Aug. 16

Paid sick time petition back before Michigan board
The Detroit News
As of February, seven other states had paid sick leave laws, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

State Lawmakers Support Strong Federal Efficiency Standards
Natural Resources Defense Council
At the National Conference of State Legislatures, members approved a new resolution urging Congress and the Department of Energy (DOE) to fully fund the federal energy efficiency standards program—and to update and amend efficiency standards on time.

Misdemeanor ticketing bill would give police flexibility, bill sponsor says
The Salem News
At a National Conference of State Legislatures panel last week in Boston, Marc Levin of the Texas Public Policy Foundation highlighted a pre-arrest civil citation program for juveniles in Florida, which he said is expanding to include adults.

Scott wants tax measure on next year’s ballot
The Ledger
More than a dozen states have similar restrictions according to the National Conference of State Legislatures, including California, but in some states the restriction is limited to a type of tax such as property taxes.

Marathon Mike Madigan breaks the record
Quad-Cities Online
It’s difficult to know whether any 18th or 19th century politicians bested those marks, but it’s highly implausible, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Aug. 15

Florida Governor Wants Tax Measure on Next Year’s Ballot
U.S. News & World Report
More than a dozen states have similar restrictions according to the National Conference of State Legislatures, including California, but in some states the restriction is limited to a type of tax such as property taxes.

State legislatures making progress on major issues that are still stuck in Congress
Washington Examiner
According to a report from the National Conference of State Legislatures, states enacted 90 percent more laws tied to immigration in the first six months of 2017 as compared with the first half of 2016.

Alliance to Save Energy applauds state legislators’ support for federal energy efficient investments
Daily Energy Insider
The Alliance to Save Energy (ASE) recently applauded a decision by the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) to adopt a resolution that urges Congress to fully fund the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) appliance and equipment standards program.

Confederate statue in Charlottesville is one of many causing conflict in the South
The San Diego Union Tribune
The National Council of State Legislators claims that it would extract $23 billion in new tax revenue.

Voucher programs raise questions
Sante Fe New Mexican
“They are this weird blend of tax policy and education policy, and in a lot of ways, they are treated more like tax policy,” said Josh Cunningham of the National Conference of State Legislatures, which tracks the programs.

Aug. 14

More South Dakota influence on NCSL
KELO AM-FM
Five South Dakota lawmakers and two staff members of the South Dakota Legislative Research Council (LRC) have been appointed to leadership roles with the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL).

We must change our election primary systems to save our democracy
Kansas City Star
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, primary elections are conducted with complex and varied laws in each state.

Tax overhaul may include school vouchers
The Detroit News
“They are this weird blend of tax policy and education policy, and in a lot of ways, they are treated more like tax policy,” said Josh Cunningham of the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Nebraska lawmaker’s bill aims to hold drone operators accountable for their crimes
Omaha World-herald
About 40 states have passed laws involving drones, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

In broadening market, golf carts increasingly putt around neighborhoods and roadways
Charleston Post Courier
An article last year in the Florida newspaper Stateline noted that at least two dozen states have passed laws authorizing local governments to allow golf carts on public roads and regulate their use, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Senator DiDomenico Attends NCSL Summit in Boston
Chelsea Record
Senator Sal DiDomenico recently joined State Senators and Representatives from throughout the United States during the 2017 National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) Summit held in Boston.

National Conference of State Legislatures Endorses Resolution Calling for Marijuana to Be Descheduled
The Daily Chronic
The National Conference of State Legislatures has endorsed a resolution calling for marijuana to be removed from the US Controlled Substances Act.

Feds should ease up on marijuana
Mail Tribune
The National Conference of State Legislatures on Tuesday passed a resolution asking the federal government to change its classification of marijuana from Schedule I — which includes the most dangerous drugs, with no accepted medical use, a high potential for abuse and potentially severe psychological or physical dependence — to Schedule III — drugs with moderate to low potential for physical and psychological dependence.

Aug. 11

Deb Peters heads national legislator organization
KELO AM-FM
Senator Deb Peters of South Dakota became the 45th president of the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) at the annual Legislative Summit in Boston.

Wisconsin Speaker Robin Vos Becomes Vice President of NCSL
Urban Milwaukee
Speaker Robin Vos (R-Wis.) has been elected vice president of the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), a bipartisan organization serving the nation’s 7,382 state lawmakers and legislative staff.

New State Legislatures report explores how states are responding to rise in localized energy production
Daily Energy Insider
Although solar energy accounts for approximately 1 percent of total generation in the United States, growth in the solar market outpaced natural gas and wind energy market growth in 2016, according to a report released by the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) on Monday.

GOP lawmakers stick to basics
Boston Herald
Hennessey is one of the hundreds of pols in town for the National Council of State Legislators convention.
 
Tax Reform Uncertainty to Hurt State Revenue Growth in FY ‘18
BNA
Arturo PĂ©rez, NCSL’s fiscal affairs program director, said during the NCSL’s Legsislative Summit in Boston that “the fiscal situation for states is generally stable, not much has changed from a year ago, revenue growth continues to remain steady, but slow.”
 
National legislative group names Sen. Holly J. Mitchell to its governing board
LA Sentinel
The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) on Sunday named Sen. Holly J. Mitchell to its national Executive Committee, group officials confirmed Tuesday. 
 
Madigan breaks one record for political longevity, may be eying another
Chicago Tribune
It's difficult to know whether any 18th or 19th century politicians bested those marks, but it's highly implausible, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Utah approves signature-gathering for 2018 medical marijuana initiative
Salt Lake Tribune
Washington, D.C., and 29 states — including states bordering Utah such as Nevada, Arizona and Colorado — had legalized medical marijuana in some form as of July, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
School choice program raises questions about accountability
Minneapolis Star Tribune
"They are this weird blend of tax policy and education policy, and in a lot of ways, they are treated more like tax policy," said Josh Cunningham of the National Conference of State Legislatures, which tracks the programs.
 
After 2015 legalization, Texans may be able to buy medical cannabis by January
Forth Worth Star Telegram
Twenty-nine states, the District of Columbia, Guam and Puerto Rico now allow for comprehensive public medical marijuana and cannabis programs, according to the National Council of State Legislatures.

Senator DiDomenico Attends NCSL Summit in Boston
Chelsea Record
Senator Sal DiDomenico recently joined State Senators and Representatives from throughout the United States during the 2017 National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) Summit held in Boston. 
 
Tidewater delegates cool to idea of statewide ballot measures
Daily Press
A referendum allows voters to petition to demand a popular vote on a newly passed law, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
National Conference of State Legislatures Urges De-Scheduling of Marijuana
Cannabis Business Times
The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) approved a resolution Monday urging that the Controlled Substances Act should be amended to remove marijuana from scheduling in order to give federally approved banks the ability to work with marijuana businesses.

Aug. 10

South Dakota Senator to Lead Bipartisan Legislative Group
U.S. News & World Report
Republican state Sen. Deb Peters of South Dakota has become the National Conference of State Legislatures' 45th president. The bipartisan organization that serves lawmakers and legislative staff nationwide said Wednesday that Peters succeeds Democratic Sen. Dan Blue of North Carolina. The conference annually alternates its leadership between the two parties.

Buzz builds over potential candidates to fill Niki Tsongas’ seat
Boston Herald
State Sen. Barbara L'Italien, an Andover Democrat who won her seat in 2015, said she's "eagerly exploring" a run to replace Tsongas, whom she introduced just last night at a National Conference of State Legislatures networking event. 

A broad push for pretrial justice reforms from the states
The Boston Globe
Nationwide, 500 new state laws in the past five years have addressed the pretrial side of criminal justice, an area every state has tackled in one way or another, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Representative Lisa Subeck Appointed to Executive Board of the Women’s Legislative Network of National Conference of State Legislatures
Urban Milwaukee
Today, Representative  Lisa Subeck (D-Madison) was elected to serve as the Midwestern Democrat representative on the Executive Board of the Women’s Legislative Network of the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL).

Is college education worth it? 
Sumter Item
Let's look at some of the numbers. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, "when considering all first-time undergraduates, studies have found anywhere from 28 percent to 40 percent of students enroll in at least one remedial course. 

Is College Education Worth It?
Daily Signal
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, “when considering all first-time undergraduates, studies have found anywhere from 28 percent to 40 percent of students enroll in at least one remedial course. 

Legalizing marijuana 
The Register-Guard
The National Conference of State Legislatures on Tuesday passed a resolution asking the federal government to change its classification of marijuana from Schedule I — which includes the most dangerous drugs, with no accepted medical use, a high potential for abuse and potentially severe psychological or physical dependence — to Schedule III — drugs with moderate to low potential for physical and psychological dependence.

Public pushes back against LAPD’s use of drones
Police News
In an attempt to strike a balance between privacy and public safety, more than a dozen states have adopted rules requiring law enforcement agencies to obtain warrants before using drones to conduct surveillance or searches, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

State lawmakers’ group endorses rescheduling of cannabis with eye on banking
The Cannabist
The bipartisan National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) passed a resolution at its annual meeting this week asking the federal government to change its classification of cannabis in the Controlled Substances Act.

Aug. 9

Trump spurs wave of state immigration laws
The Hill
Lawmakers in 42 states and the District of Columbia passed a total of 133 new measures this year governing some part of their state’s relationship with immigrants, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures’ Immigrant Policy Project. 

Colorado’s Jane Norton becomes one of the Trump administration’s prominent voices for health care repeal
The Denver Post
In an interview after her remarks at the bipartisan National Conference of State Legislatures annual meeting in Boston, Norton said the Trump administration is “committed as ever to make sure we can repeal and replace.”

A broad push for pretrial justice reforms from the states
The Boston Globe
During the NCSL annual summit in Boston on Tuesday, officials from other states highlighted their experience with one particular pretrial policy: reforming cash bail systems in hopes of jailing fewer people solely for their inability to pay. They said efforts to reform pretrial detention policies often face challenges on their path into law, but can also ultimately pay off by reducing incarceration and recidivism rates.

In Boston, Colorado’s elections chief emerges as tireless defender-in-chief of voting system
The Denver Post
“Thanks for the question,” started Williams, a featured speaker at the annual summit for the Denver-based National Conference of State Legislatures. “Colorado is very aggressive at protecting the online voter registration database.”

The speaker’s prowess for political longevity is unmatched in modern America. 
Illinois Policy
“We simply do not know for certain that there were no longer serving speakers in the 1700s and 1800s,” National Conference of State Legislatures researcher Tim Storey told the Washington Times in 2014. 

North Carolina reporter: ‘no consistency’ on Capitol press credentials
Columbia Journalism Review
A 2011 report from the National Conference of State Legislatures recognized a changing media landscape amid newspaper retrenchment, where “bloggers and social journalists have filled the gaps or holes left by reporters who covered the statehouse as a beat.” 

Sanctuary City Showdowns
The Weekly Standard
At least 33 states are considering legislation this year that would restrict sanctuary cities, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

State lawmakers wrestling with public response to drones
Lowell Sun
The drone discussion took place at a panel organized by the National Conference of State Legislatures, which is meeting at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center this week.

States taking more of a lead on immigration, citing federal inaction
WKBT
States passed 90% more legislation related to immigration in the first half of 2017 than 2016, says the new report from the National Conference of State legislatures, a bipartisan national organization for state lawmakers.
 

Aug. 8

States Have Already Passed Almost Twice as Many Immigration Laws as Last Year
New York Times
In the first half of this year, state legislators enacted 133 immigration laws, almost double the 70 passed in 2016, according to a new report from the bipartisan National Conference of State Legislatures. That spike in activity is the result of a relatively subdued 2016. In the three years before that, states passed as many immigration laws as they have so far this year, if not more.

States taking more of a lead on immigration, citing federal inaction
CNN
States are passing substantially more immigration-related bills and resolutions than last year, according to a new report, which state lawmakers say is a sign of how the lack of federal immigration reform is forcing states to act. States passed 90% more legislation related to immigration in the first half of 2017 than 2016, says the new report from the National Conference of State legislatures, a bipartisan national organization for state lawmakers.

Experts see a federal crackdown on marijuana as unlikely
The Boston Globe
At a gathering of policy makers from across the country on Monday, a lawmaker from Washington state, a Vanderbilt University law professor, and a Brookings Institute fellow all suggested that pot sellers can breathe easy. The three experts, who spoke on a panel held in Boston by the National Conference of State Legislatures, each said that tight funding and other pressures should keep federal law enforcement at bay.

Oregon lawmakers to the federal government: reschedule marijuana
OregonLive.com
The lawmakers' vote to pass the resolution took place in Boston, at the National Conference of State Legislatures' annual summit. Senate Minority Leader Ted Ferrioli, R-John Day, was not at the summit but has worked with Burdick to implement Oregon's legal marijuana system in recent years. "We are asking the federal government to remove cannabis from scheduling so that we can forge ahead with life-changing cannabis medical research," Ferrioli said in a statement.

Aug. 7

DC could take a page out of Massachusetts’ book, Rosenberg says
The Boston Globe
Both Baker, a Republican, and DeLeo, a Democrat, traded jokes with each other and Senate President Stanley Rosenberg at the National Conference of State Legislatures’ annual Legislative Summit in front of an audience of hundreds of legislators. The topic of their discussion: bipartisanship.

Bankers leery of pot industry's accounts
Boston Herald
Bankers and insurers are grappling with the financing issues around the nascent marijuana industry, amid concerns the clash between state and federal law could leave the financial industry vulnerable to losses and even prosecution, insiders told a Boston conference of national legislators yesterday. “Bankers want to make money, they don’t want to go to jail,” Michael Correia of the National Cannabis Industry Association told the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Lawmakers converge on Boston
Boston Herald
A national legislative conference is flooding the city with 6,000 lawmakers from across the nation to swap stories and swing by social events at Fenway Park and TD Garden. The National Conference of State Legislatures’ legislative summit kicked off yesterday at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center with an all-star Bay State welcome session from Gov. Charlie Baker, former Gov. William F. Weld, House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo and Senate President Stanley C. Rosenberg.
 
Groups Praise Law Banning Flame Retardants in Furniture 
U.S. News & World Report
At least 15 states have laws instructing schools to employ collection agencies when they are unsuccessful in their own attempts, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. 

Arkansas Lawmakers Head To Annual Legislative Summit
KUAR
The event, held by the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), brings together more than 6,000 lawmakers, legislative staff, and federal officials from around the nation to discuss policy issues. Those issues will range from laws on autonomous vehicles to election technology. Democratic Representative Greg Leding of Arkansas, who is on the executive committee for NCSL, says one topic of particular interest to him this year is redistricting.

GOP governor, Democratic lawmakers tout bipartisanship
San Francisco Chronicle
Republican Gov. Charlie Baker and Democratic legislative leaders meet regularly and often boast of their bipartisan cooperation even when they disagree significantly over policy. On Sunday, the so-called "big three" on Beacon Hill — the governor, House Speaker Robert DeLeo and Senate President Stan Rosenberg — will share tips about working together across party lines during a meeting of lawmakers from around the country. Baker, DeLeo and Rosenberg are scheduled to participate in a panel at the National Conference of State Legislatures' annual Legislative Summit, being held in Boston. The panel, "From Politics to Statesmanship: Solving Problems in a Partisan World," will be moderated by former Republican Gov. William Weld.

The future of the Democratic Party could be written in upcoming gubernatorial races
Washington Post
Republican control of the states is even more lopsided when the partisan balance of state legislatures is included in the statistics. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Republicans now hold the governor’s office and control of the legislature in 25 states. Democrats enjoy total control in just six, with 18 states having split control. (Nebraska has a Republican governor and a unicameral, nonpartisan legislature.) Eight years ago, Democrats held the upper hand, controlling 17 states to nine for the Republicans.

Universities hit students with whopping collection fees for unpaid tuition
The Denver Post
With state budgets stretched thin over the years, legislatures have cleared the way for public agencies to seek assistance from the private sector to recover unpaid debts. At least 15 states have laws instructing schools to employ collection agencies when they are unsuccessful in their own attempts, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Aug. 4

High-schoolers at community colleges could have classmates with guns after change to law>
Dallas News
According to research by Ethan Greenberg, a fellow at the National Conference of State Legislatures, Georgia’s concealed carry law, passed in May, is the only one in the country to codify protections for early college high school students. The protections aren’t much different from Paxton’s opinion, however.

Valley sports hazing incidents put spotlight on coaches and culture
Cronkite News
Since 2006, 49 states have enacted legislation aimed at preventing bullying and protecting students, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Petition to remove Astacio may be cathartic, but likely futile
Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
Nineteen states and the District of Columbia permit the recall of state officials, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. 

Trump spurs West Springfield man to file tax return disclosure question
The Recorder
Barrett said he hopes the Legislature will pass the requirement into law, and he plans to talk about the proposal when lawmakers from around the country gather in Boston next week for the National Conference of State Legislatures summit.

Wisconsin Republicans, Democrats spar over gun safety course
WGBA-TV
At least eight states had similar laws in place as of the end of 2015, including Arizona, Connecticut and Louisiana, according to the latest information compiled by the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Can the Trump administration really block affirmative action in schools? 
WGNO
And eight states already ban the use of race in admissions policies altogether, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures: Arizona, California, Florida, Michigan, New Hampshire, Nebraska, Oklahoma and Washington.

Police Searching Cellphone Records, No Evidence Yet of Texting in Cycling Accident
WHOTV
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures 39 states have some sort of law requiring drivers to move over while passing cyclists.

In NTIA comments, states highlight existing policies on botnets, encourage collaboration
Inside Cybersecurity
The National Conference of State Legislatures is urging the National Telecommunications and Information Administration to coordinate with state and local partners to address botnet threats as part of an initiative set up under a Trump cyber executive order.

Officials not ready to OK state speed limit hikes
Pine Bluff Commercial 
Congress repealed the national speed limit in the 1990s and in the years since, 38 states have set speed limits at 70 mph or higher, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas, which abut Arkansas, each have higher limits.

 

Aug. 3

Arkansas officials not ready to OK 75 mph limit on highways
Fox News
The U.S. adopted a 55 mph speed limit in the 1970s, seeking the greatest fuel efficiency during an energy crisis. Congress repealed the national speed limit in the 1990s and in the years since, 38 states have set speed limits at 70 mph or higher, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas, which abut Arkansas, each have higher limits.

States with Election Day registration see bonus for democracy
The Boston Globe
Before casting ballots on Election Day, voters must prove their identity and residency in person, said Wendy Underhill, program director of elections and redistricting for the National Conference of State Legislatures. Specific requirements vary, but can include showing a driver’s license, ID card, paycheck, utility bill, or other documentation.

Can Trump administration relaly block affirmative action?
NBC Montana
And eight states already ban the use of race in admissions policies altogether, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures: Arizona, California, Florida, Michigan, New Hampshire, Nebraska, Oklahoma and Washington.

Industry Model to Pave Way for Tax Group’s Partnership Project
BNA
The interested parties have presented the draft statute to the MTC, the Federation of Tax Administrators, and a National Conference of State Legislatures task force.

Minimum wage, paid leave questions proposed for 2018 Mass. Ballot
Worcester Telegram
California, New Jersey and Rhode Island are the only states currently with laws requiring paid family and medical leave, with a New York law set to take effect Jan. 1, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. 

Trump spurs West Springfield man to file tax return disclosure question
The Recorder
Barrett said he hopes the Legislature will pass the requirement into law, and he plans to talk about the proposal when lawmakers from around the country gather in Boston next week for the National Conference of State Legislatures summit.

Worth Another Look: Regulations on Review
JD Supra
In January of 2017, the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) published a list of the top 10 issues that will be before state legislatures across the nation this year. 

Good news for aggregate producers, 26 states have now increased their gas tax to fund roads and bridges
Aggregates Manager
With transportation revenue lagging, 26 states and the District of Columbia have enacted legislation to raise the gas tax in the past four years, according to a report by the National Conference of State Legislatures. 

Aug. 2

Illinois Governor Vetoes Education Bill as Budget Wrangling Continues in Several States -- Update
Fox Business
But Connecticut, Rhode Island and Wisconsin are still negotiating budget documents for the 2017-18 fiscal year, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. All three states failed to pass budgets by their July 1 deadlines.

Democratic Governors' Fundraising Trails Republicans, Except When It Comes To Big Pharma
International Business Times
Illinois, Mississippi, Ohio, Oklahoma and Missouri have sued opioid manufacturers in the last year over misleading marketing practices that the states allege have contributed to the epidemic. There have been 1,000 bills and resolutions filed in state legislatures related to pharmaceutical products so far in 2017, according to the bipartisan National Conference of State Legislatures. That’s compared to 1,200 in all of 2016 and 1,186 in 2015. 

 

Arkansas officials not ready to OK 75 mph limit on highways
San Francisco Chronicle
Congress repealed the national speed limit in the 1990s and in the years since, 38 states have set speed limits at 70 mph or higher, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

 

North Little Rock special election among several providing first test of state’s voter ID law
Arkansas Online
Arkansas is among 34 states that have laws that require or request that voters show some form of ID at the polls, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. 

 

Minimum wage, paid leave questions proposed for 2018 ballot
The Recorder
California, New Jersey and Rhode Island are the only states currently with laws requiring paid family and medical leave, with a New York law set to take effect Jan. 1, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

 

Amazon, “Kill Quill,” and the Two Bills
JURIST
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, the physical nexus tax loophole cost states $17.2 billion in 2016. 

 

Could Weed Every Be Legal At The Federal Level? This New Bill Could Make It Happen
Refinery29
As of July 2017, 29 states — including Washington, D.C., and the territories of Guam and Puerto Rico — have legalized medical marijuana, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Cannabis for recreational use is legal in eight states and D.C.

 

 

Aug. 1

Hotel Boom in SeaTac Is Unfettered by $15 Minimum Wage

New York Times
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, 19 states, began 2017 with higher minimum wages, because of increased cost-of-living adjustments, ballot initiatives passed by voters or state legislation.

Tax measures provide first test of state's voter ID law
Arkansas Online
Arkansas is among 34 states that have laws that require or request that voters show some form of ID at the polls, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Maryland panel on health care insurance to meet

 

Over 75 percent of Utahns support medical marijuana ballot initiative new poll says
The Salt Lake Tribune
As of July, 29 states and Washington, D.C., have legalized medical marijuana in some way, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Dems are starting to win state races in Trump districts
The Charlotte Observer
But even if state-level contests are small, they historically have been predictive of the national environment, said Tim Storey, elections analyst for the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Local elections first test for revival of Arkansas voter ID law
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Thirty-four states have laws requiring or requesting voters show some form of voter ID at the polls, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. 

North Dakota initiated measure study commission holds first meeting
Bismarck Tribune
Twenty-four states have a process that allows residents to place statutory or constitutional measures on the ballot, according to a Legislative Council memo that cites the National Conference of State Legislatures. North Dakota has a “direct initiative” process, the memo said.

6 myths about the ACT test, debunked
Omaha World-Herald
“Less than 25 percent of these remedial students at community colleges earn a certificate or degree within eight years,” according to research by the National Conference of State Legislatures.

$15 Minimum Wage And Paid Leave Questions Proposed For 2018 Mass. Ballot
WBUR
California, New Jersey and Rhode Island are the only states currently with laws requiring paid family and medical leave, with a New York law set to take effect Jan. 1, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Gender inequality in politics
The Tribune-Democrat
Across the United States, women make up more than 50 percent of the population, yet hold less than 20 percent of the available seats in Congress, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.