Private Sector Leaders Encourage States to Simplify Government Approvals to Boost Infrastructure

Business executives told attendees at the National Governors Association meeting in Washington, D.C. that a simplified permitting process would encourage the private sector to engage on infrastructure projects.

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.

Governors Talk Recreational Pot Legalization

At an event on Friday, a slate of governors spoke about the promises and difficulties in legalizing recreational marijuana.

State Proposal to Mandate Pay for Worker Shift Changes Draws Fire

The California Chamber of Commerce this week branded the bill a “job killer.” But prior research suggests scheduling uncertainty is hard on service sector employees.

Seeking to Deter Would-Be Social Media Stars, Legislator Wants to Crack Down on Ice Cream Licking

A bill in Arizona would make it illegal for people to lick ice cream and return it to the store shelf, a response to a video that went viral last summer.

Proposed Federal Rule Will Undercut State Lending Protections, AGs Warn

The attorneys general are concerned about a strategy that high-cost lenders can use to get around state interest rate caps.

With Big Spending on School Board Races, A State Lawmaker Seeks to Cap Contributions

Colorado currently does not have any limits in place for individual donors giving money to local school board candidates.

Leaving Scooter Regulation to Local Government

A bill moving through the Georgia legislature would clarify that making the rules for electric scooters is the business of local governments.

Interest Rate Cap on 'Payday Loans’ Yields Positive Results, Group Says

South Dakota imposed the 36% cap under a 2016 ballot measure. At least 15 other states have similar limits on the books.

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.

States With Most Jobs Losses Due to Trade Gap With China Identified in New Report

All 50 states have seen jobs eroded as a result of the country’s growing trade deficit with China over the past 20 years, the research found.

An Invasive Species Hunt: Inside the 'Python Bowl'

The 10-day competition sent 750 snake hunters into the Florida Everglades, with the goal of removing as many Burmese pythons as possible.

States Take Lead Regulating Chemicals That are Contaminating Drinking Water

But funding is a concern. In Vermont, a new law required water systems to test for PFAS without providing money for the few that found they had contamination problems.

Behind on Child Support? In Some States that Means No Fishing or Hunting

A proposal in Utah would prevent certain people from obtaining hunting or fishing permits if they're behind on child support. Similar policies have been adopted by other states.

Whistleblowing Isn't Just a Federal Issue

COMMENTARY | An interview about the first comprehensive study of state whistleblower laws and how states protect—or don’t protect—people who report wrongdoing.

American Law Does Not Take Rape Seriously

COMMENTARY | Permeating every moment of Harvey Weinstein’s trial is the disturbing history of sexual-assault prosecution in America.

Granting Anonymity to State Lawmakers—Behind Tinted Windows

State law in Rhode island requires tinted car windows to let in a certain amount of light. One lawmaker wants to exempt General Assembly members from the rule, saying it's necessary to ensure safety.

State Lawmakers Backtrack on a Tax Code Revamp

Utah officials say they plan to scrap a law they passed just last month after it attracted widespread public opposition, in part because of a tax hike on groceries.

A Plan to Expand Workers Comp Benefits to First Responders with PTSD

The Wisconsin Senate this week approved a bill that would extend benefits available to full-time law enforcement officers and firefighters, but not apply to volunteers or EMTs.

Fighting Wildfire With Fire: New Study Looks at Barriers to ‘Prescribed’ Burns

Researchers say that millions of acres of California forest is in need of preventative measures to help lower wildfire risks.