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Health Care News You May Have Missed in 2017

Although it seemed like it at times, Obamacare wasn't the only health policy up for debate this year.


Research Says Juveniles Need Their Own Miranda Rights

Studies suggest they're "too complex" for kids to understand, spurring some police departments to simplify the words they use when arresting them.

As Los Angeles Overhauls Procurement, 2028 Olympics Will Provide Major Test

The city hopes to involve minority firms in a big way -- but there are major hurdles it must first overcome.

With Recount Over, Atlanta's Next Mayor Faces a Changing City

The recount on Thursday confirmed Keisha Lance Bottoms' lead, likely keeping the city's decades-long tradition of black mayors alive. But shifting demographics will change how people lead it.

• Where Have All the Black Mayors Gone?

As Artificial Intelligence Grows in Government, Experts Urge Caution

The technology certainly has benefits, but some say they could be outweighed by its drawbacks.


State Spending Grows at Lowest Pace Since Great Recession

Amid uncertainty about federal tax reform, states are exercising caution with their fiscal 2018 budgets.


For or Against Trump? The Question Candidates for Governor Can't Escape

The president has emerged as a central issue in races all over the country, underscoring a shift toward partisanship that has intensified since his election.


This Clean Energy Home Loan Program Has Problems. California's Trying to Fix Them.

The state has passed unprecedented regulations to protect borrowers from taking on debt they can't afford to pay back.


Net Neutrality Repeal Could Be Bad News for Cities, Mayors Warn

They say their economies could suffer if the FCC repeals net neutrality regulations.

• FCC Repeals Net Neutrality, and State AGs Line Up to Sue

Beyond the Bus: ‘Microtransit’ Helps Cities Expand Transportation Services

After several private companies tried -- and failed -- to deliver on-demand group transit, some cities are now building those services themselves.

As More Prisons Shutter, Governments Wonder What to Do With Them

Distilleries? Homeless shelters? Museums? There are lots of creative ideas for repurposing old lockups. But finding one that's good for the economy -- and wins approval -- isn't easy.

Will 2018 Really Be a Big Year for Women in Politics? An Expert Weighs In.

Debbie Walsh says the wave of women elected this year is a sign of bigger things to come.

NEWS IN NUMBERS

$100 to $300

Bonuses that will soon be offered to teachers in Wichita, Kan., for recruiting friends or acquaintances to apply for hard-to-fill positions. The extra cash will only go to teachers, though, if their referrals get the job and last one year.

MORE DIGITS

In School Funding Court Battles, There's Been a Winning Shift

The legal strategy to get states to provide adequate education funding has changed -- and it's working in schools' favor.


COMMENTARY

Out of Jail, Into a Job

'Fair chance' employment policies aren't just good for the formerly incarcerated. They're good for everybody.

COMMENTARY

Homelessness Will Never End, But It Can Be Better Managed

The way we talk about the issue makes it more difficult to do what needs to be done.

COMMENTARY

The Policy Labs We Urgently Need

When it comes to evidence-based policymaking, states are out ahead of the feds. These efforts to turn data into insights should be expanded.

A gavel hitting pills.

The Opioid Files: More Than 100 States and Cities Are Suing Drug Companies

Lawsuits are being filed practically every week. Will governments prevail over the pharmaceutical industry like they did the tobacco industry in the 1990s?

• Amid Opioid Crisis, States Start Embracing Alternative Medicine

A Downsized Public Workforce May Be a Permanent Consequence of the Recession

State and local governments still haven't regained many of the jobs they cut, and they're unlikely to anytime soon.

• A Tale of Two Recoveries

Maine's Obamacare Vote Revives Expansion Debate in Some States

Last month's election has re-energized Obamacare advocates. Meanwhile in Maine, the matter is being complicated by Gov. Paul LePage, who has vowed not to implement an expansion until lawmakers show how they'll fund it.

To Reduce Recidivism, New York City Tries a Bold New Approach

The city is eliminating short-term jail sentences for low-level misdemeanors. Other cities will undoubtedly be watching the impact.

Our 2017 Public Officials of the Year

This group of honorees serves as an outstanding example of the strong determination, the bold ideas and the incredible amount of grit it takes to get things done in government.