Wildfires’ Toxic Air Leaves Damage Long After the Smoke Clears

Toxic air from fires has blanketed California and the Pacific Northwest for weeks now.

Death Toll Rises as Wildfires Burn Across West Coast

STATE AND LOCAL NEWS ROUNDUP | A federal appeals court says ex-felons will need to pay fines and restitution before they can get their voting rights back … Minneapolis City Council balks at temporary police precinct … Des Moines schools start virtual in violation of state order.

Oregon Wildfires Prompt Evacuation Advisories for About 500,000

About 1 million acres are burning in the state and people have been told to leave areas within 30 miles of Portland.

Wildfires in Oregon and Washington Consume Small Towns, While Paradise in California Again Threatened

STATE AND LOCAL NEWS ROUNDUP | Arizona school system putting as many as 70 students in virtual classrooms … Pennsylvania officials warn voters about robocalls with misinformation … Georgia could investigate people who voted twice in primaries.

Revenue Shortfalls, Low Morale and New Technology: A Survey of Government Leaders in the Age of Covid-19

Facing reduced tax revenues and dealing with new challenges, local government officials in a new survey by ELGL, the Atlas and SeeClickFix reflect on staff morale and potential government cutbacks, as well as the technology that is helping them navigate this time.

Wildfires Raging in Several Western States

Fires are forcing hundreds of evacuations in the south and western United States.

What Happened When a Public Institute Became a De Facto Lobbying Arm of the Timber Industry

Internal emails show a tax-funded agency created to educate people about forestry has acted as a public-relations agency and lobbying arm for Oregon’s timber industry, in some cases skirting legal constraints that forbid it from doing so.

Tear Gas Bans: A Policing Change Not Gaining Traction

At least 100 agencies used forms of tear gas on people in the past two months.

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown Says Many Federal Officers Will Leave Portland

STATE AND LOCAL NEWS ROUNDUP | A couple states report surprisingly good tax receipts in July … Tennessee governor OKs resumption of high school football … Florida marks 5,000 Burmese pythons removed from Everglades.

States Let Law School Grads Work Without Taking the Bar Exam

Earlier this month, Louisiana cancelled the bar exam. This week the state became the fourth to enact "diploma privilege," allowing recent law school graduates to practice law without sitting for the three-day bar exam.

DOJ Inspector General to Review Federal Law Enforcement Response to Protests

The move comes as officers the Trump administration deployed to Portland, Oregon draw scrutiny.

Oregon AG Files Lawsuit Challenging Federal Detention of Portland Protesters

STATE AND LOCAL NEWS ROUNDUP | Illinois House speaker linked to federal investigation … Nevada legislature looks for budget cuts … Maine lobstermen say PPP not effective help.

States Still Trying to Get a Handle on Virus Testing in Nursing Homes

Oregon this week became one of the latest states to move ahead with a testing initiative. People have been getting sick from the coronavirus in long-term care facilities at disproportionate rates.

A State Moves to Publicly Disclose Information on Workplace Coronavirus Outbreaks

The decision by Oregon officials comes after scrutiny over outbreaks at a fruit company there.

Wisconsin Governor Abandons Trying to Negotiate Statewide Restrictions

STATE AND LOCAL ROUNDUP | Survey finds black and Latino businesses not getting aid … Analysis says air pollution hasn’t decreased dramatically, despite way less traffic ... Researchers question if removal of key staffer will make Florida data release less transparent.

Ban or Regulate Kratom? State Lawmakers Weigh Approaches to Herbal Supplement

The American Kratom Association is lobbying lawmakers to adopt regulations that set ground rules for the supplement, which the FDA advises people not to consume, instead of joining six states that ban it as a controlled substance.

Lawmaker Proposes Harsher Punishments for Rioters in Masks

An Oregon legislator seeks to increase the judicial penalties for rioters who conceal their faces, saying masks make it more difficult for police to adequately respond to out-of-control protests.

This State Pays to Help Asylum-Seekers Avoid Deportation

In immigration court, a lawyer makes deportation much less likely.

Farmers Struggle as Hemp Harvest Winds Down

Many hemp growers won’t make much money, and some might go bust.

Busy Shipping River at a Standstill Until a Broken Barge Lock is Fixed

Thousands of tons of cargo are stuck on barges, as the closure on the Columbia River is expected to last until the end of the month.

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