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THE FUTURE OF What’s Next

Legislators Battle Whether to Restrict or Expand Voting

In the aftermath of the 2020 election, voting rights are on the minds of legislators who have introduced hundreds of bills that either restrict or expand how voters can cast their ballots.

By Carl Smith, Senior Staff Writer  |  March 3, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF What’s Happening Now

The Year of Governors Living Dangerously

They’ve been in the spotlight over the last 12 months as Washington bucked responsibility to the states. Now many of them are facing harsh critics and challenges to their power.

By Donald F. Kettl, Federalism Columnist  |  March 3, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF Finance

The Myth of ‘Unnecessary’ Federal Aid to State and Local Governments

It's premised on a highly selective interpretation of lagging data, along with narrow assumptions of need.

By Amanda Kass, Government Finance Research Center, and Philip Rocco, Marquette University  |  March 3, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF Finance

Why Infrastructure Needs a Bottom-Up Bipartisan Push Now

It’s the only way to get a bill out of Congress before the fall, given the imperative to get COVID relief done first. Governors and mayors need to understand that it’s a game of chess, not checkers.

By Girard Miller, Finance Columnist  |  March 2, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF What’s Happening Now

Cuomo in Context: His Career and Personality Set the Stage for Scandals

After years of leading through intimidation, New York's Democratic governor faces sexual harassment allegations and charges of covering up thousands of deaths.

By Alan Greenblatt, Senior Staff Writer  |  March 1, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF What’s Happening Now

Americans Need Better Internet. States Can Help Pave the Way.

Lawmakers should ensure that cumbersome state and local regulations and review processes don't prevent providers from building out and upgrading the infrastructure that high-speed, reliable connectivity requires.

By Jeffrey Westling, R Street Institute  |  March 1, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF What’s Happening Now

How the Texas Electricity System Produced Low-Cost Power but Left Residents Out in the Cold

The Texas electric power market is designed to give energy companies incentive to sell electricity at the lowest possible cost. That focus helps explain why it collapsed during a historic cold wave.

By Theodore J. Kury, University of Florida  |  March 1, 2021
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$5.9 trillion

The estimated amount that it would cost the U.S. to repair its roads, bridges and airports to a safe and sustainable level over the next decade, according to the American Society of Civil Engineers. The ASCE gave America a C- on its infrastructure score, only a slight improvement from the D+ it received in 2017.

THE FUTURE OF What’s Happening Now

Across the Nation, Changing of the Guard at City Halls

New mayors will be elected this year in New York, Seattle, Boston and other cities. Given problems with budgets and crime, why would anyone want the job?

By Alan Greenblatt, Senior Staff Writer  |  February 26, 2021
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Future in Context

Donald Trump Has Earned Membership in the President’s Club, the World’s Most Exclusive Fraternity. What Does It Mean?

When a president leaves the White House, he enters one of the most elite clubs. A book by two of America’s leading journalists looks at what binds these individuals together, given their personalities and politics.

By Clay Jenkinson, Editor-at-Large  |  February 26, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF Security

Lawmaker Proposes to Ban AI and Its Discriminatory Impact

In response to reports detailing AI tech's disproportionate effect on communities of color, Washington state Sen. Bob Hasegawa introduced a bill to ban AI tech and regulate automated decision systems.

By Katya Maruri, Government Technology  |  February 26, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF What’s Happening Now

Health-Care Exchange Special Enrollment Window Varies

With the feds leading the way, states are reopening their health-care exchanges to uninsured and eligible residents as part of the latest COVID relief plan. But not all enrollment windows are the same.

By Zoe Manzanetti, Staff Writer  |  February 25, 2021
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Gutenberg to Zuckerberg: A Tale of Two Revolutions

The printing press and social media democratized communication in their respective times. They both turned the order of things on its head — for good, for ill, and forever.

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