These federal grants can help ease multiplying election threats

Cyber and physical threats are some of the biggest issues local election officials face ahead of the November presidential contest. Researchers said while there is a finite amount of funding, federal grants can help ease the pressure.

Sponsor Content

New Tools Help State and Local Governments Battle Ransomware, Other Big Disasters

When governments find themselves being ransomed, their choices are typically to pay, which will undercut their ability to deliver key services to their communities due to budget restrictions, or not pay, resulting in the immediate inability to serve their communities and the loss of key data that will inevitably plague them for years afterwards.

Why Washington Metro’s leader is ‘bullish’ on post-pandemic transit

Faced with a drop in riders and major budget shortfalls, Randy Clarke doubled down on providing more service to D.C.-area riders. It seems to be working.

Housing boom in most of the US could ease shortage, but cost is still a problem

There are 5 million new housing units since 2020, mostly in the South and West, but supply has still not caught up with demand.

Feds open the door to $2B in Northeast Corridor rail improvements

The grant applications come as President Joe Biden, a longtime railroad fan, wraps up his first term and Amtrak ridership rapidly rebounds from pandemic-era lows.

New federal rule will overhaul transmission planning as electric grid strains

The sprawling rule requires transmission operators to plan along a 20-year horizon and work with states to develop data-driven projections of needs.

Efforts to reform federal broadband subsidy gain traction

Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have expressed support for tweaks to the Affordable Connectivity Program’s rules in a bid to keep it from sunsetting this month.

After Supreme Court decision left wetlands unprotected, Colorado steps in

Lawmakers crafted new rules to protect and restore wetlands and streams left vulnerable following a decision by the high court that scaled back the types of places subject to the Clean Water Act.

Texas flooding brings new urgency to Houston home buyout program

The Houston area is the site of perhaps the country’s longest-running experiment in the adaptation policy known as “managed retreat.” But the past week’s flooding has demonstrated that even this nation-leading program hasn’t been able to keep pace with escalating disaster.

Skateboarding’s latest trick: Reviving cities

New skate plazas are proving that making spaces skateable makes them safer and more dynamic, too.

FCC poised to require calls to the 988 suicide hotline be geolocated

Routing calls based on location versus a person’s area code is already standard for calls coming into 911. Elected officials and mental health advocates want 988 calls to be geolocated as well. A new FCC proposal would do that.

With only three weeks to go, lawmakers weigh ways to save federal internet subsidy

Congress is exploring several options to fund it. All face long odds of success despite widespread and bipartisan support for the Affordable Connectivity Program.

E-bikes are a ‘game changer’ for bike shares

Ridership on the systems in cities big and small after the pandemic is stronger than ever, and bike-share operators say the electric devices are a big reason why.

Federal broadband subsidy cut amid fears over its future

The Affordable Connectivity Program will pay some households just $14 in May, down from $30. Unless Congress acts on a $7 billion extension bill, it will run out of money at the end of the month, plunging some families, supporters warn, into “digital darkness.”

A water crisis in Mississippi turns into a fight against privatization

Thanks to a federal judge, residents of Jackson will have a say in how the city resolves its yearslong water crisis.

States rethink data centers as ‘electricity hogs’ strain the grid

Worries are rising over what data centers mean for demand, renewable energy goals.

FCC reinstates net neutrality rules

Commissioners voted 3-2 to revive net neutrality, which supporters said would prevent the internet from being intentionally blocked or slowed down. Opponents said the effort is unnecessary and violates the law.

One city takes to the streets to address extreme heat

A Los Angeles neighborhood tested the impact of an innovative cool pavement coating, and research shows it holds potential to supplement climate mitigation efforts.

States explore new incentives to lower the cost of EVs

Washington state became the latest state to roll out rebates for buying or leasing EVs this week, but other states are offering incentives to knock thousands of dollars off the cost of the vehicles, too.

Initial funding for digital equity plans is available. But how do states plan to use it?

Some have identified creative solutions to address affordability, digital skills and accessibility issues. But one approach—reliance on the federal internet subsidy that is about to expire—could force some states back to the drawing board.

3 tips for short-term land-use planning

COMMENTARY | As populations grow and real estate requirements change, cities or counties should regularly evaluate their mix of land use designations so they get the kind of development they can live with long term.