Paying the Homeless to Clean Up City Parks

STATE AND LOCAL ROUNDUP | Civil asset forfeiture reform bills … New Orleans short-term rental restrictions … and Oregon roadkill consumption rules.

Medicaid ‘Buy-In’ Could Be a New Health Care Option for the Uninsured

“We think 2019 is going to be the year of Medicaid buy-in,” one health care advocate said.

Millions of College Students Are Going Hungry

A new government report highlights just how pervasive the problem is.

Amid Shutdown, Feds Figure Out Ways to Fund Food Stamp Benefits. For Now.

States have until Jan. 20 to request an early issuance to make sure they receive February SNAP funding.

Some Drug Users in Western U.S. Seek Out Deadly Fentanyl. Here’s Why.

Some drug users report actually opting for the the synthetic opioid, which experts in many places have linked with many overdoses.

Places Where Flu Activity Has Been the Highest

Many localities haven’t yet felt the full brunt of influenza season.

How a Feel-Good AI Story Went Wrong in Flint

A machine-learning model showed promising results in finding lead pipes, but city officials and their engineering contractor abandoned it.

Where Asian Longhorned Ticks Will Likely Spread in the U.S.

After being discovered in New Jersey in August 2017, the invasive species has been spotted in 45 counties in eight other states.

Trump Administration Moves On Tougher Food Stamp Work Requirements

The U.S. Department of Agriculture offered its proposal Thursday, the same day the president signed a bill that rejected expanded work mandates.

Tough But Important Lessons From San Diego’s 2017 Hepatitis A Emergency

A California state auditor’s report focuses much attention on a slow public health response as the highly-contagious liver disease spread.

New Survey Finds Big Increase in U.S. Teen Vaping

One in five high school seniors vaped in 2018.

Local Health Department Uses Holiday Theme to Warn of an ‘Unwanted Present’

“On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me … a brand new STD.”

Despite Uncertainty After ACA Court Ruling, Medicaid Expansion Likely to Proceed

Officials in the three states where voters approved expanding Medicaid last month are moving forward, regardless of a ruling by a Texas judge declaring the Affordable Care Act unconstitutional.

States, Counties and Cities Report Surges in Hepatitis A Cases

STATE AND LOCAL ROUNDUP | Communication black hole during Camp Fire … N.Y. seafood fraud investigation … and mental health needs swell after Anchorage quake.

U.S. Homelessness Edged Upwards This Year, Federal Report Says

At least one advocacy group points to housing affordability as a key factor. Also on Monday, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson announced a high-level staff departure.

Fears Raised of ‘Chilling Effect’ on Kids If Trump Proposal Is Adopted

Changes to the “public charge” rule could make it harder for immigrants to secure green cards if they seek government services like Medicaid.

‘Crowdsourcing for Health Care’ Raises Spirits—and Concerns

Thirty states have passed safe harbor laws for Christian health care share ministries, stating that they are not insurance companies and are exempt from insurance regulations.

Measuring Results of Early Childhood Spending

Finding more resources to help struggling populations “needs to be reframed as an economic imperative, even a national security issue.”

New Rules Could Open More Homes to Foster Kids

The proposed federal guidelines would eliminate square footage and bedroom requirements, among other changes.