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‘State of Play’: NCSL, A Starting Point Join Forces to Launch New Policy Video Series

Partnership focusing on issues important in the states will launch in January 2024.

By Lesley Kennedy  |  December 5, 2023

AUSTIN, Texas—State legislatures have passed about 39,000 bills in 2023. The number passed by the 118th Congress and signed by the president this year? Twenty-two.

States, Tim Storey says, are where the action is and problems are solved. This is one reason the NCSL CEO was excited to announce a new partnership between his organization and A Starting Point, the civic engagement platform created by actor Chris Evans, actor/filmmaker/playwright Mark Kassen and tech entrepreneur Joe Kiani.

“State of Play,” a nonpartisan series demystifying state legislatures and public policy, will offer explainer-style video content and lawmaker conversations about the significant issues states will address next year. The series kicks off in January 2024, with new segments launching monthly.

Kassen joined Storey to preview the new series at NCSL’s Forecast ’24 meeting. Kassen says enlisting state lawmakers to explore issues in a nonpartisan way will show civil discourse in action while reducing information barriers about state policymaking.

The partnership uses A Starting Point’s signature “Explores” format and NCSL’s legislative expertise for a unique look at state politics and how new legislation could affect Americans. The short video segments will take viewers behind statehouse doors, featuring lawmakers from opposing parties answering common questions about state legislative actions and priorities. 

State Legislatures News Special Report

NCSL has the facts, the figures and the forecast to help legislators and staff prepare for the new session. From education to the environment, from elections to energy, the stories in this special report offer insights from NCSL experts on what lies ahead for state lawmakers in 2024. What’s trending for the new year? Find out now.

Storey says “State of Play” offers a fantastic opportunity for NCSL, which has been serving state legislatures for 50 years, to partner with another trusted brand with the same goals and values about getting more people involved in the democratic process and providing education on topics that affect their everyday lives. 

“We have been tracking the start of A Starting Point for several years, and we are blown away by what they’re doing to engage American people—voters and non-voters alike—in the issues of the day,” he says.

Kassen says his platform needs trusted partners like NCSL who are committed to civility within our political discourse. He says not enough attention is placed on state legislators and that he looks forward to highlighting states’ work on “State of Play.”

“We’ve been wanting to do this for quite some time, and it’s very exciting,’ he says.

Lesley Kennedy is NCSL’s director of publishing and digital content.


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