State and Federal Relations

What Would Federal Preclearance Mean for State Abortion Laws?

Democratic presidential candidate Kamala Harris proposes requiring states that have a history of restricting abortion to submit new laws for federal approval before they can go into effect.

STDs Continue to Spread Nationwide

Cases of gonorrhea, chlamydia and syphilis rose for the fifth consecutive year, according to federal data released this week.

Federal, State Laws Help Corporations Avoid State Income Taxes

COMMENTARY | A little known federal law that dates back decades—along with subsequent state laws—shields many manufacturers and online retailers from state corporate income tax.

Food Stamp Rules Would Eliminate Benefits for 4 Million, Reduce State Autonomy

Recent changes pushed by the Trump administration are expected to result in about 10 percent of recipients losing benefits. Another 500,000 children would lose access to free or reduced-price meals at school.

Tackling the Teacher-Student Diversity Gap in K-12 Schools

A partnership between a university and three community colleges in California aims to create more bilingual teachers while also diversifying the state's teacher pool.

Local Law Enforcement Should Be Able to Protect Airports From Drones, Report Says

To address security risks, a task force recommends that Congress authorize local law enforcement to take down drones flown too close to airports.

States Can Craft Own Net Neutrality Rules, Appeals Court Rules

A federal appeals court upheld much of the FCC’s rollback of net neutrality rules but found that the commission overstepped its authority when it blocked states from enacting their own internet regulations.

Trump Administration to Give State, Local Governments a Say in Refugee Resettlement

A new executive order requires enhanced consultation with local and state leaders before placing refugees in their jurisdictions, which immigration advocates worry will amount to veto power.

EPA Again Targets California, Now Focusing on Water Quality

The Trump administration says California is “failing” on water quality, the latest EPA action against the Democrat-led state.

Beyond Sticker Shock: Experts Urge Congress to Rethink Infrastructure Priorities

Policy experts say lawmakers should think more broadly about infrastructure goals rather than just focusing on a dollar amount to be spent.

EPA Threatens California with Loss of Highway Funds Over Air Quality

The EPA told the California Air Resources Board on Tuesday that it must resubmit air quality plans or risk sanctions that could include the withholding of federal highway funding.

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Weighing What Congress Could Learn From State Legislatures

“There is a wellspring of experience and knowledge from beyond the beltway that deserves to be explored," says one expert.

Senate Transportation Funding Bill Would Cut Small Project Transit Grants

Legislation advanced by the Senate Appropriations Committee would cut funding for the Small Starts grants program from $526 million to $78 million.

A 51st State? The District of Columbia Aims for Its Star

Washington, D.C. leaders made their case for statehood at the first U.S. House of Representatives hearing on the issue in 25 years, while Republicans raised concerns about corruption and fiscal stability.

As Trump Moves to Revoke California Emissions Authority, State Leaders Poised to Challenge

President Trump announced his plan Wednesday to strip California of its ability to set vehicle emissions standards, which have become the defacto national standard.

Advocates Push Back on Trump Administration Call for 'Humane Policing' of Homeless People

Ahead of President Trump’s trip to California this week, the administration has outlined strategies including housing deregulation and increased law enforcement involvement.

Federal Spending on Kids Falls, as More Dollars Flow Toward Older Adults and Debt

The findings are included in the latest edition of an annual report. “In a sense in our budget, we’re treating kids worse and worse,” said one of its authors.

Appeals Court Overturns State Restrictions on Political Robocalls

Montana’s attorney general is reviewing the decision to see if an appeal is possible, or if lawmakers will need to take action.

Eight States See Rise in People Lacking Health Insurance, Census Data Show

National estimates indicate an increased share of Americans don’t have coverage.