State and City Relations

Will States Force Localities to Build Affordable Housing?

The need for more housing in America is undeniable. But with localities unlikely to change zoning laws to create more, states are stepping in.

State Efforts to Undercut Local Governance Widen in Scope

Lawmakers have introduced upwards of 650 bills this year preempting the power of cities and other local governments, says a new report. These bills are broad in their approach, looking to “cut out local authority at-large.”

How to Make Office-to-Housing Conversions Work

A panel of experts looked at what it would take to revitalize downtowns by turning offices into homes. They coalesced around five things cities need to do to succeed.

Rank-choice Voting Advances as Election Deniers, Voting Right Limitations Gain Traction

Two states and dozens of other jurisdictions have adopted ranked-choice voting for at least some elections.

Beach Battles: Lawmakers Pushed to Increase Public Shoreline Access

Steep parking fees and other factors can pose barriers to visiting beaches, with some advocates saying restrictive policies reinforce segregation and racial inequality.

How States Are Responding to the Supreme Court's Gun Ruling

New York and California are moving to keep firearms away from sites like playgrounds and bars and out of the hands of people who could commit mass shootings. And the gun control group Giffords is pushing a slate of ideas for new state and local policy.

City Official: State Transportation Agencies Block Street Safety Progress

The Idaho city council president told congressional lawmakers that state policies are designed to make sure vehicles go fast. She and others offered local solutions to make roads safer for drivers and pedestrians.

The Big Opportunity States Are Missing

COMMENTARY | State governments are excluding local governments from major policymaking decisions. There needs to be more collaboration and cooperation between states and localities if we want to see meaningful change in our communities.

Biden Administration Releases $45B for Broadband to States

Guidance for the infrastructure program says states must make affordable broadband available to the middle class, too, and cannot exclude cities from being considered for the funding.

Treasury Releasing $13B More in Rental Aid to Successful Programs

At least 50 state and local government grantees have met funding distribution benchmarks that would make them eligible for additional money.

“I Wish It Had Not Become Law,” Says Governor Of Mask-Banning Order He Signed Into Law

Citing rising numbers of Covid-19 cases among children, Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson called state lawmakers back for a special session to consider allowing school districts to implement mask mandates.

22 States, Biden Administration Ask Supreme Court to Keep Eviction Ban in Place

A legal challenge brought by landlords seeks to strike the national eviction moratorium, which is set to expire June 30 unless it is extended.

Paying With Cash? Retailers Must Take Your Dollars in These States

For many, requiring the option to use cash is a race and economic equity issue.

Texas’ Larger Cities Would Face Financial Penalties for Cutting Police Budgets Under Bill Approved by House

Previously, the Senate approved a bill that would ask for an election if cities decide to reduce law enforcement budgets.

Lubbock Voters will Decide Saturday if the West Texas City will become the Largest “Sanctuary City for the Unborn”

While proponents of the proposed ordinance view abortion as an “inconceivably wicked action,” detractors say it would be immediately challenged in court and that battles over abortion access are best fought at the state and federal levels.

As Austin Voters Weigh Camping Ban Proposition, Texas Lawmakers Consider Bills to Prohibit Homeless Encampments Statewide

If the legislation is approved and signed by the governor, cities could lose state grant money for failing to enforce a new statewide encampment ban.

After a Deadly Year on the Roads, States Push for Safety Over Speed

Lawmakers in California and other states are rethinking how they set and enforce speed limits, and they’re proposing to hand more power to local authorities to slow drivers in their communities.

Pandemic Provokes City vs. State Conflicts

The Georgia legislature approved legislation that would preempt the commission’s powers, after the panel moved toward restricting police funding. State preemption of local powers is increasing nationwide.

Mayors Want Vaccines Distributed Directly to Cities

The proposal, pitched to the White House on Monday, would mean bypassing states. It’s likely to be a tough sell given the added complications it would involve.

Florida Officials to Spring Breakers: Please Try to Not Spread Covid Everywhere

City and county leaders in Florida, prohibited from enforcing local mask mandates, are relying largely on public messaging to keep visitors in line.