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State and Local Politics and Policy

Thirty-nine state governments are now “trifectas.” It’s not the kind of government the Constitution's framers wanted.
New federal guidelines make it clear that new hazard mitigation plans should factor in the likelihood of extreme weather events. Here are four recommendations for preparing for the future impacts.
Misinformation thrived during the pandemic, exacerbating health inequities. To meet its core mission, the public health field needs to engage more actively, particularly in historically mistrustful communities.
With ranked-choice voting, voters are more likely to choose city leaders who have broad support. And it’s a big step toward dialing down the divisiveness of our politics.
Allowing undocumented immigrants to obtain driver's licenses is about more than highway safety. It's good for assimilation, belonging and community engagement.
In 1980, the THC content of marijuana was less than 1.5 percent, while some of today’s varieties can be found with more than 30 percent. In 2021, 16.3 million people had experienced a marijuana use disorder.
Simply rehashing the problem does more harm than good. Instead, state and local leaders must help citizens see how solutions to homelessness benefit all of us.
The declaration that the COVID-19 public health emergency is over doesn’t mean the end of its impact, or of the virus itself. What comes now?
A new report from RAND Corporation argues that progress against opioid drug abuse and addiction is best understood — and addressed — in the context of everything that comes with it through an ecosystem view.
A half-century ago, a Republican president moved to devolve power from Washington to states and local governments. Today it’s the right that’s trying to turn that around.
As the administration calls for gun control measures, many congressmembers, including from Kansas and Missouri, have remained silent. A poll found that only 39 percent of Missourians supported a semi-automatic weapon ban.
Too often it’s our youth who are the targets of racial- and gender-based animus and attacks. Rather than making life harder for children, public officials should be protecting them.
The Florida governor lived in Dunedin from when he was 6 years old until he was 18. But the town has changed since DeSantis lived there, and not everyone is so eager to have him as the town’s most famous son.
By slashing budgets, dictating what can be taught and gutting tenure protections, lawmakers are putting their states' public universities on a glide path to uselessness.
Opponents of church-state separation have been emboldened by recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions and the growing acceptance of Christian nationalism on the right.
Mayor Michelle Wu’s administration has announced that on May 11, city employees will no longer be required to get the vaccine or test for the virus. An estimated 95 percent of employees previously submitted proof of vaccination.
One of the measures heading to Gov. Jared Polis’ desk would recognize Lunar New Year as an observed state holiday. The other two would adopt the ICWA and allow traditional Native American regalia at graduation ceremonies.
Daniel Cameron was supposed to have the Republican nomination all sewn up at this point, but he, instead, finds himself under attack. Meanwhile, Oklahoma's legislating grinds to a halt and the motivating power of hatred.
Declining enrollment and poor completion rates raise concerns that underserved students and communities could be left behind. Gregory Haile, the president of Broward College, sees a way forward.
The planned $700 million island campus will foster coastal sustainability and job training for the green economy. And befitting the Big Apple, it will be unlike any other climate research facility in the country.
Primary elections are where most of those who govern us are chosen. Can making them nonpartisan — or eliminating them altogether — diminish the impact of ideological fringes? What has happened in Louisiana suggests that it can.
A resolution would amend the constitution to allow the state to join the National Popular Vote Compact, which will only become active if states representing 270 electoral college votes join. Only 195 electoral college votes are accounted for so far.
Lord Mayor Sophie Hæstorp Andersen criticized the Danish-inspired town for not reflecting the “genuine warmth and acceptance of pride” in Denmark after Solvang banned pride-themed banners and painted over rainbow sidewalks.
As Washington state rolls out its new cap-and-invest program to cut greenhouse gas emissions, it's bringing in new money to fund a range of important transportation projects.
It’s especially hard to get low-income Americans living in multifamily buildings across the digital divide. But states and nonprofits are finding ways to do it.
The Legislature has overridden eight out of 15 vetoed bills in the current session, including a ban on transgender athletes in girls sports and additional work rules for older recipients of food assistance.
In attempting to regulate use of social media by young people, the state has pushed the idea the furthest, and other states may follow its lead. Will it work? And will it survive the inevitable legal challenges?
A boom is coming in transmission line construction. But legislatures in a dozen states, under pressure from utilites, have passed “right of first refusal” laws that are raising concerns about higher energy costs for consumers.
The California county’s Board of Supervisors meeting was full of angry attacks, recall threats and widespread disagreement as leaders must now figure out how to manage elections after deciding to sever its relationship with Dominion Voting Systems.
Orange County, sixth largest in the country by population, is home to the world’s largest wastewater recycling facility. Here's the water district’s path to a 100 percent recycling rate.
Children with disabilities are central to a fierce debate in the state legislature over any school voucher program. Roughly 13 percent of Texas public school students receive special education services.
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