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THE FUTURE OF What’s Happening Now

Can Rescue Funds Give America the Broadband It Really Wants?

Billions of dollars in the American Rescue Plan could be used to close the persistent digital divide in urban and rural communities. But how can these investments be “future-proof”?

By Carl Smith, Senior Staff Writer  |  April 14, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF What’s Happening Now

Public Libraries Can Tap into Eligible Funds Worth Billions

The American Rescue Plan includes significant federal dollars that can support library programs and services that play a larger role in recovery than is generally understood.

By Carl Smith, Senior Staff Writer  |  April 14, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF What’s Next

Which State Is the Greenest, Most Environmentally Friendly?

A new report analyzes which states have the most eco-friendly behavior, good environmental quality and contribute the most to reduce climate change. Rankings are split between blue and red states.

By Zoe Manzanetti, Staff Writer  |  April 14, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF What’s Next

California Plans to Safely Reopen Despite Vaccine Naysayers

Gov. Gavin Newsom hopes to reopen the state by June 15, but that timeline relies on low hospitalization rates and a consistent supply of COVID vaccines. It also counts on the state achieving herd immunity.

By Hannah Wiley, The Sacramento Bee  |  April 13, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF Community Design

Denver’s “Electronic Noses” to Purify Foul-Smelling Air

Residents complain about every two days of bad odors, so the city is now requiring 330 industrial facilities to submit odor control plans as well as installing e-nose sensors to detect and mitigate the stenches.

By Bruce Finley, The Denver Post  |  April 13, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF Security

Ex-Employee Remotely Hacks Kansas Water Treatment Plant

A former employee of a water district plant in Ellsworth, Kan., allegedly logged in and attempted to tamper with the public drinking water system. This is just one of several recent hacks on water systems nationwide.

By Jonathan Shorman and Steve Vockrodt, The Kansas City Star  |  April 13, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF Community Design

Churches Are Closing. It’s a Challenge for Local Governments.

Across the country, houses of worship are shuttering by the thousands. Municipalities have a role in finding new uses for abandoned buildings that have long anchored communities and neighborhoods.

By Rick Reinhard, The Lakelands Institute  |  April 13, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF Finance

How States Can Gird for the Coming Fights Over Taxing Digital Ads

Maryland is leading the way, but its new levy faces plenty of pushback in the courts and Congress. States that want to follow suit should act quickly to craft viable uniform model legislation.

By Girard Miller, Finance Columnist  |  April 13, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF Security

Will Regulating Social Media Misinformation Fix the Internet?

A congressional hearing last month took up the sticky issue of when and how to hold companies like Facebook, Google and Twitter accountable for misinformation. Lawmakers are now faced with a regulatory maze.

By Julia Edinger, Government Technology  |  April 13, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF Finance

State Proposes 33 Tax and Fee Increases for Transportation

Washington has proposed the new tax and fee increases to help expand, replace and maintain transportation routes across the state. With the proposed revenue boost, the state could raise $15.3 billion.

By Mike Lindblom, The Seattle Times  |  April 12, 2021
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THE FUTURE OF Finance

Detroiters Without Bank Accounts Are Paying the Price

For poor residents who can’t afford the fees or don’t trust banks, not having a bank account can actually cost them money. The pandemic has only exacerbated the challenges for unbanked families.

By Susan Tompor, The Detroit News  |  April 12, 2021
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