State Policy

More cutbacks in legal services for the poor in the nation's poorest state   |   October 20, 2011
By Joe Atkins, Labor South Two years after the North Mississippi Rural Legal Services laid off workers, slashed wages up to 19 percent, and eliminated needed programs for the...

 

States will fight environmentalists over federal coal ash rules   |   October 18, 2011
Environmental advocates are facing new setbacks in their fight for strict federal regulation of coal ash, the toxic waste created by burning coal for electricity that's been...

 

INSTITUTE INDEX: The political assault on reproductive health care   |   September 29, 2011
Date on which U.S. Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.), chair of the Energy and Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, notified Planned Parenthood he was...

 

NC lawmakers pushing same-sex marriage ban enlist help of gay-hating preacher   |   September 12, 2011
The N.C. General Assembly will convene today for a special session on whether to put before voters a proposed constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, which is already...

 

Examining Rick Perry's environmental record   |   September 7, 2011
By Forrest Wilder, Texas Observer Ken Kramer, the long-time head of the Lone Star Chapter of the Sierra Club, recalls the one and only time Rick Perry met with him. The year was...

 

VOICES: Remembering the lessons of the Hamlet fire   |   September 1, 2011
By Chris Fitzsimon, NC Policy Watch Twenty years ago this Saturday, 25 workers died in a fire at the Imperial Foods chicken processing plant in Hamlet, North Carolina. They were...

 

Hurricane Irene: Why failing to evacuate inmates violates human rights standards   |   August 27, 2011
As Hurricane Irene makes its way up the Atlantic seaboard, officials in New York are coming under growing fire for failing to authorize an evacuation of Rikers Island, the city's...

 

INSTITUTE INDEX: States' weak coal ash oversight endangers the public   |   August 25, 2011
When a massive coal ash pond at the Tennessee Valley Authority's Kingston power plant in eastern Tennessee failed back in December 2008, it dumped a billion gallons of coal...

 

Unions divided over holding Democratic convention in right-to-work North Carolina   |   August 17, 2011
Thirteen labor unions affiliated with the AFL-CIO are refusing to participate in the 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C. because of the state's harsh anti-union...

 

What can we do about disasters?   |   August 11, 2011
Hurricanes in the Gulf Coast. Devastating earthquakes in Haiti and Japan. The news is filled with vivid stories of disasters, both sudden and -- as with the case of incremental...

 

INSTITUTE INDEX: Exposing ALEC's corporate agenda   |   August 11, 2011
Number of model bills and resolutions crafted by the American Legislative Exchange Council -- a nonprofit that promotes state policies advancing conservative causes -- that were...

 

South Carolina immigration law starts new era of racial profiling   |   August 3, 2011
New America Media Editor's Note: The battle over immigration is now being waged at the state level. Since Arizona's immigration law SB 1070 went into effect one year ago, five...

 

VOICES: Statehouse Inc.   |   July 20, 2011
By Phil Mattera, Dirt Diggers DigestState legislatures, once hailed by Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis as "laboratories of democracy" because of their progressive innovations...

 

Extreme Alabama immigration law heads to court   |   July 12, 2011
By Kathy Mulady, Equal Voice NewspaperA coalition of civil-rights, human-rights and faith groups filed a class action lawsuit Friday challenging Alabama's recently enacted...

 

Taxbreaks.com: States get tough on costly loopholes for online retailers   |   July 7, 2011
Over the last decade, online retailers like Amazon have skirted paying billions in state sales taxes, arguing they were exempt due to their lack of brick-and-mortar stores. But...

 

VOICES: Amazon's anti-tax crusade   |   July 1, 2011
By Phil Mattera, Dirt Diggers Digest When large companies complain about taxes, they are usually talking about levies they have to pay out of their own deep pockets. Amazon.com is...

 

List of state immigration laws blocked in federal court grows longer   |   June 29, 2011
By Marian Wang, ProPublica Last week, we noted that several states' tough, new immigration laws have been challenged in court. Arizona and Utah both recently had key parts of...

 

Another legal action targets scofflaw Kentucky coal companies   |   June 29, 2011
A coalition of environmental watchdog groups has put two Kentucky coal companies on notice -- for the second time in less than a year -- that they could face lawsuits over their...

 

Court orders Louisiana to take action on radiation threat from oil and gas production   |   June 27, 2011
In a major victory for environmental advocates, the Louisiana State Court of Appeals has ordered state regulators to begin monitoring pollution in wastewater discharged from oil...

 

Alabama immigration law: Policy or politics?   |   June 24, 2011
By Kathy Mulady, Equal Voice Despite soaring deficits, cuts in social services, worker layoffs and tornado-devastated communities, Alabama's first Republican-controlled...

 

VOICES: Right-wing attempts to shorten early voting period are aimed at progressive base   |   June 17, 2011
By Cristina Francisco-McGuire, Progressive States Network The 2008 early vote proved beneficial to progressives, with self-identified Democrats making up a disproportionate share...

 

Corporate lobby targets African-Americans for NC bill raising loan interest rates   |   June 2, 2011
North Carolina has some of the most stringent consumer protection rules in the country against predatory lending. In 2010, lending groups ramped up campaign contributions [pdf] to...

 

Corporate America in a tizzy over labor board's Boeing order   |   May 27, 2011
By Jane Slaughter, Labor Notes When the National Labor Relations Board told Boeing in April that it couldn't retaliate against workers who exercise their right to strike,...

 

VOICES: The white-power legislature in Texas   |   May 23, 2011
By Bob Moser, The Texas Observer Back in February, at a rally protesting anti-immigrant legislation, state Rep. Lon Burnam raised some eyebrows by letting loose with the "R" word...

 

Another citizen lawsuit against a coal company spotlights Kentucky's regulatory breakdown   |   March 10, 2011
Environmental watchdogs are taking yet another coal mining company to court over massive violations of the federal Clean Water Act in Kentucky, raising questions about the state...