NCSL in the News | July 2019

7/1/2019

July 31

Trump’s tax returns required under new California election law
Los Angeles Times
Legislatures in 18 states have considered the issue in recent years, according to a recent tally by the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Amid boycotts, Trump says 'we are not ruled from afar' at Jamestown event marking 400 years of democracy in America
Richmond Times
“I’m proud because despite the many challenges and setbacks this country has faced, America is still a place where our right to self-governance is not taken for granted, where we can challenge our government and debate our principles, and the institutions which provide for that right are held dear,” said Hutchinson, who is also the president of the National Conference of State Legislatures. “The institution of the legislature,” she added, “needs to be protected. For it is as strong and as fragile as democracy itself.”

States Battle Big Tech Over Data Privacy Laws
The Pew Charitable Trusts
Despite enthusiasm for more privacy rules by legislators and their constituents, many states found themselves bogged down this year in both the details of high tech operations and industry complaints, said Pam Greenberg, a senior fellow for the National Conference of State Legislatures who collected information on state consumer data privacy legislation.

Beshear proposes term limits, lobbying ban for lawmakers
Madison.Com
Fifteen states have legislative term limits, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Regions joins group focused on diversity and inclusion
Alabama Political Reporter
The National Conference of State Legislatures and the Pew Charitable Trusts in a joint 2015 report found that women made up 14 percent of the Alabama’s legislators, while females made up about half of the state’s population.

July 30

Texas Made An Example Out Of Crystal Mason — For Trying To Vote
Huff Post
Now, 35 states have put some form of voter ID requirement in place, including seven states that have a strict photo-ID requirement, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. 
 
Outpost to Eliminate Store's Single-Use Plastic Packaging
Bay View Compass
The National Conference of State Legislatures reported that Maine was the first state to enact legislation, in 1991, that required recycling efforts at retail stores, and prevented retailers from providing plastic bags unless they provide a convenient receptacle to ensure plastic bags are collected and recycled, as have California, Delaware, New York, Rhode Island, and the District of Columbia.

Arizona farmers consider risks of growing hemp
Arizona Capitol Times
Arizona and at least 40 other states have enacted legislation to establish an industrial hemp program, Mindy Bridges, senior policy specialist with the National Conference of State Legislatures, said in an email.
 
Eye surgery law sparks public dispute
Antelope Valley Press
Similar legislation expanding what optometrists can do has been proposed in several other states, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

July 29

Eye surgery law sparks unusually public dispute in Arkansas
ABC News
Similar legislation expanding what optometrists can do has been proposed in several other states, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Federal Government To Resume Capital Punishment After Nearly 20-Year Hiatus
NPR
In the past 10 years, at least five states — New Mexico, Illinois, Connecticut, Maryland and New Hampshire — have abolished the death penalty, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. 
 
Deadline nears on California bill seeking to boot Trump from primary ballot
Desert Sun
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, seven other states— Illinois, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island — are considering new tax return disclosure requirements. 
 
Ruth named to Executive Board of the Women’s Legislative Network of NCSL
The Missouri Times
Missouri Rep. Becky Ruth has been selected to serve as a Midwestern Regional representative on the Executive Board of the Women’s Legislative Network of the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Chemical castration law’s impact could be minimal
Times Daily
California was the first state to pass in 1996 a chemical castration law, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Michael E. Hastings was present for 99% of Senate votes in May
Will County Gazette
As of 2016, Illinois legislators earned a base salary of $67,836 annually, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. 

July 26

How to Get Child Support as a Single Parent
NY Times
It’s worth getting the court order. Two-thirds of parents who have filed got some support from noncustodial parents, the Census Bureau found, but only 44 percent received the full amount. On average, custodial parents received $3,447 annually in 2015. That amount can lift kids out of poverty, according to Meghan McCann, a senior policy specialist at the nonprofit National Conference of State Legislatures.

What you need to know about Washington’s new same-day voter registration
The Seattle Times
Washington joins 20 other states and the District of Columbia in having some form of same-day registration, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. 
 
Another proposal seeks legal recreational use of marijuana in Arkansas
Northwest Democrat-Gazette
In the past four years, 10 states have passed expungement measures similar to those included in the proposals, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Mass. Senate could vote today to ban child marriages   
The Daily News of Newburyport
Currently two-dozen other states set the minimum age for marriage at 16 or 17, with exceptions made in cases of emancipated minors, parental consent or a judge’s approval, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

July 25

The Hill's Latina Leaders to Watch 2019
The Hill
There are distinct challenges that come with being a freshman lawmaker, Hernandez said — especially with being a young rookie lawmaker. Only 7 percent of Arizona legislators are millennials, compared with 56 percent who are baby boomers, according to data from the National Conference of State Legislatures.

How to Cope With the High Cost of Infertility
Yahoo Finance
Since only 10% of women have received insurance support for fertility treatments, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures, patients are often taking on these high costs out of pocket.

What you need to know about Washington’s new same-day voter registration
Seattle Times
Washington joins 20 other states and the District of Columbia in having some form of same-day registration, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Idaho and Montana each has a form of same-day registration; Oregon still requires voters to register three weeks in advance.

Hybrid car owners angry over new fees and taxes
KHOU-TV
Other states with fees include Michigan, Georgia, North Carolina, California, Colorado, and Indiana, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Lawmakers Introduce Legislation to Improve Federal-State-Local Coordination
Gov Exec.
The legislation was endorsed by the “Big Seven” group of nonpartisan state and local nonprofit organizations: the National Governors Association, the National Association of Counties, the National League of Cities, the International City/County Management Association, the National Conference of State Legislatures, the Council of State Governments, and the United States Conference of Mayors.

Fountain, Monument pass resolutions formally opposing Electoral College law
Colorado Springs Gazette
Fifteen states and the District of Columbia have passed similar legislation, totaling 197 Electoral College votes, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Durham forum marks 10th anniversary of last increase in the federal minimum wage
Charlotte Observer
North Carolina has not approved any legislation to raise the minimum wage, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Senate poised to vote to ban child marriages  
Salem News
Currently two-dozen other states set the minimum age for marriage at 16 or 17, with exceptions made in cases of emancipated minors, parental consent or a judge’s approval, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

July 24

Troubled FAA poised to get embattled leader
Politico
In a letter to the bill’s sponsors, the directors of the National Conference of State Legislatures and American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials asked them to remove a provision that would punish non-compliant states by taking away as much as 2.5 percent of their federal highway funding.
 
Rein in the recalls
Colorado Springs Independent
Only 19 states accommodate the recall of legislative members, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Clearly, Colorado is one of them.

Some NC lawmakers want to ban smokable hemp. It looks too much like marijuana, they say.
Charlotte Observer
But state House Republicans have now changed two bills — the Farm Act, aka Senate Bill 315, and SB 352 — to ban smokable hemp flower as soon as this December. North Carolina would become the sixth state — in addition to Kansas, Kentucky, Indiana, Louisiana and Texas — to ban smokable hemp, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Northam says he’ll shift up to $1.5 million to help the census count every Virginian
The Virginian-Pilot
Twenty-one state legislatures have dedicated funding for the 2020 census, according to the latest data from the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
MORE THAN A MOMENT: Women Are Forging a New Path in Columbia
Post and Courier
According to figures from the National Conference of State Legislatures, only five other states have a lower percentage of women in their state houses.

July 23

Conservatives Are Pushing to Recall Key Democrats in Colorado
Governing
Of the 19 states that allow residents to attempt to recall elected state officials, 11 — including Colorado — allow residents to circulate petitions for any reason, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures, a research and policy organization based in Denver. 

Census question may be dead, but Trump’s backup plan could still reshape political map
Roll Call
“Any state that tries to do that is going to create a legal uproar across the country,” said Jeff Wice, co-editor of the National Conference of State Legislatures’ forthcoming redistricting law handbook for the 2020 census.

Kankakee County Democrats post meme comparing Republican President Donald Trump’s red #MAGA hats to KKK hoods
Chicago Tribune
Democratic state Sen. Toi Hutchinson of Olympia Fields who also is president of the National Conference of State Legislatures, said “no one should be clutching their pearls” as if they haven’t seen such memes played out on both sides across the nation.

July 22

Arizona Law Helps Those in Licensed Occupations
U.S. News
A study by the National Conference of State Legislatures notes that the military trains people in skills applicable to at least 962 civilian occupations. 

Polis Recall Effort in Colorado Follows a Larger Trend
PEW Charitable Trusts 
11 — including Colorado — allow residents to circulate petitions for any reason, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures, a research and policy organization based in Denver. The remaining states require evidence of malfeasance.

Texas leaves Census outreach to cities, counties
Houston Chronicle
Though it is not uncommon for states to decline to fund such efforts, most have created so-called complete count committees to educate the public about the Census, according to a report by the National Conference of State Legislatures.

California data-privacy law may become the model for Congress
Washington Examiner
Following the passage of the landmark California Consumer Privacy Act last year, bills were introduced in at least 25 states addressing different aspects of data privacy, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. 

Indianapolis to host 2020 Legislative Summit
Washington Times Herald
In 2020, the Circle City will host the National Conference of State Legislatures Legislative Summit. This four-day event – scheduled for Aug. 10-13, 2020 – will bring together lawmakers from every state to talk about issues, discuss strategies for different scenarios and even have a little fun that doesn’t involve party lines.

July 19

Congress Might Not Pass A $15 Minimum Wage—But These States Already Have 
Forbes
In total, 30 states imposed their own minimum wage increase above the federally mandated $7.25. Of those, seven have approved plans to phase in a $15 wage, according to data from the National Conference of State Legislatures. These states are home to cities with a higher cost of living, such as San Francisco and Chicago.

Voting by Phone Is Easy. But Is It Secure?
PEW Charitable Trusts
Twenty-two states and the District of Columbia allow servicemembers to return their ballots via email, according to a National Conference of State Legislatures analysis last year.

Pittsburgh scored a win with paid sick leave. States across the country are trying to stop that from happening 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star
Right now, only 10 states and Washington D.C. require paid sick leave, according to data compiled by the National Conference of State Legislatures.

'Saying No Is Not The Answer': The Reasons Driving Missouri Republicans' Shift On Criminal Justice
KCUR 89.3
In the past few years, states also have focused on decreasing the number of people coming into jail or prison, said Alison Lawrence, a criminal justice program director at the National Conference of State Legislatures.

U.S. House passes federal minimum wage hike proposal; Senate unlikely to follow
WDEL 1150 AM
The National Conference of State Legislators reports that 29 states and the District of Columbia have minimum wages above the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour.

July 18

Interstate rivalries: States loosen regulations to woo driverless cars companies 
Washington Times
Since Nevada became the first to adopt regulations in 2011, at least 41 states and the District of Columbia have considered legislation of all stripes related to autonomous vehicles, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Central Florida immigration advocates among challengers of ‘sanctuary cities’ ban in federal lawsuit 
Orlando Sentinel
As of June, 30 states have pending legislation related to sanctuary jurisdictions or noncompliance with immigration detainment requests, according to the National Conference of State Legislators.

ILLINOIS STATE LAWMAKERS AMONG HIGHEST PAID IN NATION 
Illinois Policy
While the General Assembly had not previously accepted a pay raise since 2008, state lawmakers in Illinois were already the fifth-highest paid in the nation – and the highest-paid among those not considered “full-time” by the National Conference of State Legislatures, or NCSL.

Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins just got this national role 
New York Daily News
As the group's new chairwoman, Stewart-Cousins will have a tough task: Republicans control 30 of the statehouses in the country, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

July 17

5 years after Eric Garner's death, a look back at the case and the movement it sparked
ABC News
To date, nine states have created procedures to improve transparency into police-involved deaths or allegations of misconduct, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Will Gavin Newsom try to kick Trump off the California ballot?
CBS News
Data from the National Conference of State Legislatures counts at least seven other states with similar pending bills. Only one — California's — is awaiting a governor's sign-off.
 
Payment Options for Fertility Treatments
Yahoo Finance
Your state may be among the 16 that have passed laws that require insurers to cover or offer coverage for treatments related to an infertility diagnosis, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Plastic bag ban caught in political crosswind
The Daily News
California and New York have also prohibited the use of plastic bags, while all of Hawaii's counties have passed bans, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

July 16

Apple preaches privacy. Lawmakers want the talk to turn to action
The Washington Post
Over the past year, policymakers have considered at least 24 bills targeting data privacy, according to a tally by the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Trump’s Push For Citizenship Data Could Still Be Used For Gerrymandering
Five Thirty Eight
According to a study by the National Conference of State Legislatures, 21 states have explicit provisions saying that only data from the decennial census can be used for drawing legislative districts.
 
Plastic bag ban caught in political crosswind
The Eagle Tribune
California and New York have also prohibited the use of plastic bags, while all of Hawaii's counties have passed bans, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

July 15

Lawmakers OK giving Trump a choice: Release taxes, or skip California primary
San Francisco Chronicle
Lawmakers in 19 other states also introduced bills this year that would require presidential candidates to hand over their tax returns to appear on the ballot, according to a database maintained by the National Conference of State Legislatures. None has yet been enacted into law.
 
How a Criminal Justice Reform Became an Enrichment Scheme
Politico
And as of 2017, according to the National Conference of State Legislators, 48 states and the District of Columbia offered some form of pretrial diversion.
 
California Passes Measure Requiring Presidential Candidates To Release Tax Returns
HuffPost
Eighteen other states have legislation similar to California’s, but none has become law, according to a database tracked by the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Governor announces legislation that would ban sanctuary cities
Richmond Register
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), an additional 21 states, including Kentucky, have proposed legislation to outlaw "sanctuary" policies.
 
Plastic bag ban changes criticized
Salem News
California and New York have also prohibited the use of plastic bags, while all of Hawaii's counties have passed bans, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
If college bills are coming due ...
The Lewiston Tribune
In Pennsylvania, the worst state for affordability, students have to work 120 hours a week to cover in-state tuition and housing, according to price data from College Tuition Compare and labor/wage data from the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Feds don’t regulate election equipment, so states are on their own
The Frederick News Post
According to a 2018 analysis by the National Conference of State Legislatures, 38 states require some element of federal testing and certification of election systems before installing them in their state.
 
Maine among states regulating 'autocycles'
WABI 5 News
The National Conference of State Legislatures said more than 40 states now have definitions for them. 

July 12

Gavin Newsom will decide whether Trump must release tax returns to get on 2020 ballot
Sacramento Bee
Records from the National Conference of State Legislatures’ Election Legislation Database show 17 other states have considered bills this year to require presidential candidates to release their tax returns to get on the state’s ballot.
 
Taxpayers may be on hook for Gov. Wolf’s veto of bill to pay for his own unfunded mandate
York Daily Record
Texas was the latest state to eliminate the provision in 2017, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
President Trump to make an announcement related to citizenship question on 2020 Census
KXAN
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, 30 states have executive orders or actions for statewide complete count commission or committee.

July 11

GOP tries to persuade panel to pass lottery privacy bill
Washington Post
At least four states — Delaware, Kansas, North Dakota and Ohio — offer unconditional anonymity for lottery winners, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Virginia is America’s Top State for Business in 2019
CNBC
Defense spending accounts for nearly 12% of the Commonwealth’s GDP, more than any other state, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
These are the worst places to live in America in 2019
CNBC
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Mississippi is one of only five states with no protections against discrimination for non-disabled individuals.
 
California Is 1st State To Offer Health Benefits To Adult Undocumented Immigrants
NPR
In most states, people living in the country illegally are not eligible for federal health insurance programs like Medicaid and Medicare, except in some cases, like medical emergencies and pregnancies, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Feds Don't Regulate Election Equipment, So States Are On Their Own
Pew Charitable Trusts
According to a 2018 analysis by the National Conference of State Legislatures, 38 states require some element of federal testing and certification of election systems before installing them in their state. In eight states, officials do not require that sort of testing or certification.
 
Activist to push for vote on legalizing recreational use of marijuana in Arkansas
Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
In the past four years, 10 states have passed expungement measures similar to those included in Fults' second proposed amendment, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Community Involvement Critical Component Of Census In Florida
CBS Miami
According to the National Conference for State Legislatures, however, states can play a role in making the 2020 Census a “success” by funding outreach campaigns and creating “Complete Count Committees” or commissions.

July 10

CBO Releases Minimum Wage Study as Congress Considers $15
Governing
No states currently have a $15 minimum wage, but 18 have scheduled increases in recent years, and six states plus the district are planning hikes to $15, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
EV Owners Won't Be Charged Higher Registration in N.C.
Government Technology
As of last fall, 21 states had registration fees on electric and hybrid vehicles, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures, and several other states have enacted them this year, including Ohio, Illinois and Arkansas. 
 
FBI and ICE agents have been secretly mining state driver's license databases for facial recognition searches without consent
SF Gate
Undocumented immigrants can get driver's licenses in a dozen states and Washington, D.C. after providing proof of in-state residency or another form of of documentation, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Gov: Budget delay is not seen as the end of world
Sentinel & Enterprise
"I think it's interesting to note that we just had a national conference of state legislators a couple of years ago or so ... the biggest draw was at the conference that we had with the speakers were the governor, the Senate president and myself and what they wanted to hear was the ability of Massachusetts to work so very well together while leadership in other states didn't have that ability and our ability to get things done in Massachusetts," House Speaker Robert DeLeo said Monday.

Kentucky special pension session likely to start July 19, House Republican leader says
Courier Journal
Some lawmakers have long-planned vacations, a few have mission trips scheduled, and several plan to attend one of the annual legislative summer conventions, Carney said. (The Southern Legislative Conference is scheduled for July 13-17 in New Orleans, the National Conference of State Legislatures gathering is Aug. 5-8 in Nashville.)

July 9

CBO: Raising the minimum wage to $15 could boost pay of up to 27 million workers
Roll Call
The highest minimum wage currently is $14 per hour in Washington, D.C.; no states currently have a $15 minimum wage, though 18 have scheduled increases in recent years, and six states plus the district are planning hikes to $15, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

NC electric vehicle owners won't pay higher registration fees next year after all
Raleigh News & Observer
A growing number of states are looking to special fees to help offset a decline in revenue from fuel taxes, as improved efficiency means drivers go farther on a gallon of gas. As of last fall, 21 states had registration fees on electric and hybrid vehicles, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures, and several other states have enacted them this year, including Ohio, Illinois and Arkansas.

After veto, re-evaluate election machine mandate
Sunbury Daily Item
Pennsylvania is one of nine states that still have straight-party voting as a ballot option, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Iowa Legislature should prioritize climate crisis, clean energy
DesMoinesRegister.com
As a member of the Natural Resources and Infrastructure Committee of the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), I will be meeting with Midwestern peers on these issues at the NCSL summit in Nashville. A collaborative regional approach may be in order, if our respective governors can get together, too.

July 8

Pregnant woman who lost unborn child in shooting will not be charged
CBS News
According to the National Conference of State Legislators, 38 states currently have fetal homicide laws, which typically define the fetus as a person, who is legally provided with rights or protections.  
 
New York Eases Path for #MeToo Lawsuits as Harassment Laws Pass
Bloomberg Report
New York is the most recent state to abolish the “severe or pervasive” standard, but it likely won’t be the last. California and Delaware have either directly or effectively eliminated the standard, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
NEW FINDINGS: Georgia might allow nonviolent felons to vote after imprisonment
Atlanta Journal Constitution
Georgia is one of 22 states where felons lose their voting rights during incarceration and for a period of time afterward, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
'Things have changed': Pa. considers repealing outdated Sunday laws
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Heather Morton, a fiscal affairs researcher with the National Conference of State Legislatures, stopped short of calling the repeal of blue laws a “full-scale trend” but wrote in an email that she has seen ongoing efforts to repeal restrictions in some states that still have them on the books.
 
Illinois-bound drivers beware: State becomes hands-free zone
Detroit Free Press
On Aug. 1, Minnesota will become the 19th state to implement a hand-held device ban, along with the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. 
 
HOW TO PREPARE FOR THE ‘HANDS-FREE LAW’ BEFORE AUG. 1
Herald Review
The National Conference of State Legislatures reports that 48 states, D.C., Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands have a ban on texting while driving. 
 
Louisiana lawmakers write rules for self-driving trucks
WAFB 9
The National Conference of State Legislatures says 29 states have enacted laws involving autonomous vehicles.

July 2

New laws limit phone use while driving in Tennessee and Florida
Atlanta Journal Constitution
Tennessee and Georgia are among 19 states that require drivers to keep their hands off their phones while driving, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
College bills coming due? Here are some smart tips before you pay.
The Philadelphia Inquirer
In Pennsylvania, students have to work 120 hours a week to cover in-state tuition and housing, according to price data from College Tuition Compare and labor/wage data from the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Hospitals, transplant programs could multiply in Central Florida with law change
Orlando Sentinel
About 35 states still have certificate of need laws in place, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Cannabis Suits Haunt Employers As More States Legalize
Law360
NCSL Information Cited.
  
These States Have Tried To Make It Tough For Minor Party Candidates To Get on The Ballots
HuffPost
California is among 18 states that have considered tax return disclosure requirements this year for presidential candidates, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), after 27 states considered such legislation last year.
 
Progress Stalls for Minor Parties to Get on State Ballots
Pew Charitable Trusts
California is among 18 states that have considered tax return disclosure requirements this year for presidential candidates, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), after 27 states considered such legislation last year.
 
NCSL updates P3 use by the states
The Bond Buyer
Thirty eight states, Puerto Rico and D.C. have statutorily authorized public-private partnerships for the transportation sector, according to a new update from the National Conference of State Legislatures.

July 1

What the Supreme Court’s gerrymandering decision means for 2020
PBS NewsHour
Currently, independent commissions in nine states — Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Michigan, Montana, New Jersey and Washington — are responsible for drawing congressional district lines, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
 
Dead Republican operative's electronic records at the core of two major legal battles
Los Angeles Times
"They were strategic in understanding the ramifications of redistricting. Tom understood that," said Tim Storey, a redistricting expert at the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), who knew Hofeller for years. "There was no Tom Hofeller on the Democratic side."

How 3 States Are Digging In on Civics Education
Education Week
And last year, the National Conference of State Legislatures counted nearly 115 civics education-related bills.

Alabama woman indicted in the death of her fetus, but person who shot her goes free
Chicago Tribune
Alabama is one of dozens of states that have fetal homicide laws allowing criminal charges when fetuses are killed in violent acts, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Progress Stalls for Minor Parties to Get on State Ballots
Stateline
California is among 18 states that have considered tax return disclosure requirements this year for presidential candidates, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), after 27 states considered such legislation last year. So far, the presidential ballot bills are mostly political talking points for both sides. None has been enacted. But bills to require presidential tax return disclosure are alive in eight states — California, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island — and will be carried over to the next legislative session in four states — Hawaii, Minnesota, Vermont and Washington, according to NCSL.

Nebraska measure could tip the number of states with casinos
KMTV - 3 News Now
Twenty-five states — including neighboring Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, and South Dakota — allow commercial casino gambling with games such as slot machines, craps and roulette wheels, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Iowa casinos near Omaha, in particular, cater to Nebraska residents looking to gamble.
 
Big changes coming? Record number of women are running for the Louisiana Legislature
The Louisiana Advocate
In just the past three months, after a couple of recent special legislative elections to replace lawmakers who went on to other jobs, Louisiana would rise from 47th to 45th lowest ratio of women to men in state lawmaking bodies as listed by the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Legislator as landlord: Financial disclosures don't highlight state agency leases with North Dakota elected officials 
Grand Forks Herald
In North Dakota and Minnesota, "no statutes specifically address public officials contracting with the government," according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. South Dakota's constitution prevents legislators from being "interested in any contract with the state or any municipality thereof which was authorized by any law passed during such term."