To: Dean Sanpei,
Subject: Dec. 16: How does your state rank among the nation's worst drivers?
Date: Mon Dec 16 15:52:26 MST 2013

NCSL TODAY brings you the latest news from the capitols.

TOP NEWS Dec. 16, 2013

Which states have the worst drivers?


Drivers ask the question every time they see another motorist sending texts while barreling down the interstate at 75 mph, or changing lanes without signaling, or hanging a left on red: Does (INSERT STATE HERE) have the worst drivers in the country?

Plan for school shelters thwarted by Oklahoma tax cut

Associated Press

Although Oklahoma averages more than 50 tornadoes a year, and sometimes gets more than 100, about 60 percent of public schools have no shelters. Cash-strapped districts can't afford to build them.

Washington state's expanded Medicaid fine print: 'payback' from estate after death

Seattle Times

As thousands of state residents enroll in Washington’s expanded Medicaid program, many will be surprised at fine print: After you’re dead, your estate can be billed for ordinary health-care expenses. State officials are scrambling to change the rule. Check out NCSL's research on this issue.

Mental patients bused - and crime followed

Sacramento Bee

Even as Nevada’s embattled state mental hospital works to revamp operations, the fallout from its aggressive busing policies continues to resonate from California to Florida. A Sacramento Bee investigation into the fates of hundreds of mentally ill men and women whom the Nevada hospital shipped out of Las Vegas via Greyhound bus in recent years has found that crime and tragedy often followed.

Proposals underway to change how Coloradans elect candidates, vote

The Denver Post

A powerful chief executive who championed election reform in California and a politically disillusioned private eye are looking to upend the way elections are conducted in Colorado. Check out NCSL's research on this issue.

Pennsylvania lawmaker wants to slap fracking industry with severance tax

NCSL research cited in Bucks County Courier Times

With state budget season looming, a bipartisan group of lawmakers is reviving an attempt to impose a severance tax on Pennsylvania’s natural gas drillers.Check out NCSL's research on this issue.


State Legislatures magazine: A wealth of public health

From the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to tiny county health departments, local, state and federal health agencies often are behind the scenes looking after the nation’s health and safety. By responding to disasters, vaccinating millions against diseases, and teaching the public how to avoid illness and injuries, public health agencies ensure the safety of everything from fresh produce to public places, and promote wellness from the workplace to the school yard.

Federal fiscal certainty on the horizon for states

In light of a looming deadline to reach a bipartisan budget deal, House and Senate Budget Committee Chairmen Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) and Patty Murray (D-Wash.) reached agreement on spending for the next two years while also adjusting reductions from sequestration. What does this mean for states? Most important, the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2013 would provide certainty on overall discretionary spending, including sequestration, for the next two federal fiscal years.

Webinar Dec. 17: Tools for management coaching

In the 21st century, legislative staff managers and supervisors no longer have the luxury of being the people with all the answers. Instead they need to raise the expectations of their staff to do some of the thinking and then develop their skills to do so. Legislative staff who supervise others will benefit from this introductory webinar on coaching and the tools for shifting the focus of interactions with others.



Strong States, Strong Nation

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