Lacking agreement on a comprehensive plan to reduce a pension debt that's approaching $100 billion, the state's Democratic leaders are opting to line up in punt formation. They expect to approve a conference committee of lawmakers from both parties to spend weeks looking for common ground on the issue.
Barack Obama’s near-complete absence from more than 25 percent of the states, from which he is politically estranged, is no surprise, in that it reflects routine cost-benefit calculations of the modern presidency. But in a country splintered by partisanship and race, it may also have consequences.
Source: Seattle Times | Washington state |
June 19, 2013
Seven congressional Democrats from Washington are pressing the U.S. Department of Justice to honor the state’s new recreational-marijuana law — the delegation’s first collective public statement on the issue.
Supporters and opponents of capital punishment agree: The current death penalty is expensive, inefficient, and arbitrary. Some state legislatures have reacted to those faults by abolishing the death penalty, while others are trying to speed it up.
Source: The Los Angeles Times | Los Angeles, Calif. |
June 18, 2013
Since his victory last month, Mayor-elect Eric Garcetti has set himself to the task of being a more low-key public official than his predecessor. He is not using a transition team studded with big names and has scraped plans for a black-tie inaugural ball, opting instead for a public party in Grand Park with music and food.
Constituents frequently contact their Congress members with questions or requests for help with Medicare, Social Security and other government programs. But when it comes to Obamacare inquiries, some GOP lawmakers say they won't assist constituents or will forward the calls to the Obama administration.
Nationally, six straight years of revenue declines have put enormous pressure on state and local governments, nevertheless, some are thriving. Standard & Poor's, the credit-rating agency, reports that it issued more bond upgrades than downgrades in 2012.
The Medicaid expansion and the Affordable Care Act are in full swing. With the influx of people who will be applying for benefits and the ACA requirement for online enrollment, it is more important than ever to verify the identities of those accessing benefits up front.