Other 'zombie' state laws, like Arizona's, on abortion, LGBTQ+ issues and more could resurface

COMMENTARY | It might seem unnecessary for a state legislature to repeal a law that is not enforced or has been superseded by a more recent law, but the recent Arizona abortion ban shows the consequences of assuming that old laws will always remain dormant.

States are banning private funding of elections. Some worry about unintended consequences.

Wisconsin voters approved a ballot measure banning such cash infusions earlier this month. Proponents of the bans say they limit interference in elections, but opponents say chronically underfunded elections offices need help.

How collaboration is changing North Carolina, one project at a time

States that want to tap universities and philanthropies to find solutions to policy challenges using the best research, evidence and data should look at how one state mastered the communications and logistics essential for effective partnerships.

Why a lawsuit may be state and local governments’ best chance to cut insulin prices

The skyrocketing cost of insulin hits employee health plans and limits governments’ ability to finance other projects, such as infrastructure improvements. The multidistrict litigation aims to fix that.

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Today’s finance teams carry a heavy burden, supporting everything from growth strategies to long-term planning – all while continuously delivering monthly and quarterly numbers and keeping cash flowing. But even as demands on finance departments grow, many still spend excessive time using paper, spreadsheets, and e-mails to process vendor invoices, approvals, and payments.

Justices appear willing to limit bribery law used in corruption cases

The U.S. Supreme Court appeared to be sympathetic to a former Indiana mayor’s argument that the federal bribery statute is vague. A ruling would resolve a disparity in which “gratuities” from outsiders are considered OK in some courts, but not in others.

In reversal, more areas allow high-speed police chases

Supporters of policy rollbacks say police pursuits can reduce crime; some experts aren’t so sure.

States, White House gear up to bring prescription costs down

Maryland’s prescription drug affordability board will evaluate eight drugs for potential cost reduction. The federal government could help move the process along, one expert says.

Arkansas led the nation in measuring obesity in kids. Did it help?

In 2003, Arkansas became the first state to send home "fat letters" or BMI reports about all students as part of a broader anti-obesity initiative. At least 23 states followed Arkansas’ lead. Some have since scaled back their efforts.

Beyond the books: Teens check out mental health resources at libraries

In Hartford, Kentucky, the public library invites teens to weekly sessions to foster positive thinking amid a growing youth mental health crisis.

Port aid, protections for highway and election workers signed into law

Maryland Gov. Wes Moore signed bills supporting Baltimore-area businesses and workers affected by the collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge.

State looks to expand food assistance program to restaurants

Nevada's Restaurant Meals Program would allow people 60 or older, those who are disabled and people experiencing homelessness enrolled in SNAP to buy meals at participating restaurants.  

Emergency alert: States confront EMS shortages

Minnesota declared an “EMS emergency” last month, but it’s far from alone. An outdated approach to funding the service is largely to blame, says experts.

In this Legislature’s Civility Caucus, Republicans and Democrats actually like talking to each other

At Civility Caucus gatherings, conversation might go to hot-button issues, but they are much more productive and sometimes even lead to co-sponsored bills.

Oregon rolls back decriminalization of drugs. But is it too soon?

At a time when drug overdoses plague the nation, Oregon will recriminalize hard drugs, walking back a first-in-the nation experiment that critics say the state botched.

As elections loom, congressional maps challenged as discriminatory will remain in place

With control of the House of Representatives hanging in the balance, the time-consuming appeals process means elections in multiple districts will take place using maps that have been challenged as discriminatory to voters of color.

In crisis and on hold: How the 988 hotline revamped callers' experience

To avoid people in need hanging up in frustration, the crisis and suicide hotline has changed the voice and the music that callers hear as they wait to be connected to counselors.

Freedom Caucuses push for conservative state laws, but getting attention is their big success

Eleven states have formal chapters of the State Freedom Caucus Network, which aims to push Republicans to the right.

How teens can be safer drivers

Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for teenagers in the U.S. Will raising the requirements for a driver’s license help?

In Georgia, inadequate housing can mean significantly longer stays in foster care

Even after resolving other safety concerns, parents can wait for months to be reunited with their children, often because of what advocates say are stringent requirements sought by the state’s Division of Family and Children Services.

States look to Medicaid to curb maternal mortality

Expanding Medicaid postpartum care from 60 days to 12 months gives states more tools for addressing rising maternal death rates.