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Tennessee Senate Bill 1059

 

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Senate Bill 1059, Increase Death Benefits for First Responders: Passed 89 to 0 in the state House on May 9, 2017. 

 

To increase from $20,000 to $250,000 the amount paid to the estate of a firefighter, volunteer rescue squad worker, or law enforcement officer who dies in the line of duty.

 

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Pennsylvania Senate Bill 431

 

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Senate Bill 431, Increase Fines for Littering: Passed 49 to 0 in the state Senate on July 8, 2017. 

 

To increase the fine for a first-time littering conviction from $300 to $1,000 and require that the offender pick up litter between 5 and 50 hours. For a second offense an offender could pay up to $2,000 and spend 100 hours picking up litte

 

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Ohio Senate Bill 2

 

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Senate Bill 2, Cleanup of Landfill Facilities and Properties: Passed 33 to 0 in the state Senate on March 15, 2017.

 

To authorize the Director of Environmental Protection to take actions to abate pollution or contamination at a location where hazardous waste was disposed, and to create processes to work with property owners and responsible parties to fund and complete such remediation projects.

 

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North Carolina House Bill 253

 

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House Bill 253, Show Political Party Labels of Nine Counties' School Board Candidates: Passed 34 to 13 in the state Senate on June 29, 2017.

 

To disclose school board candidates' party affiliations on voter ballots in Beaufort, Carteret, Cleveland, Dare, Hyde, Madison, Onslow, Pender, and Yancey counties.

 

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New Hampshire Senate Bill 33

 

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Senate Bill 33, Limit the Period of Applicability for Regulations on Organizational Speech, and Expand the Type of Communications that are Regulated: Passed 14 to 9 in the state Senate on February 23, 2017.

 

To expand state restrictions on speech by "political advocacy organizations"  60 days prior to an election, without regard to whether they are engaging in "express advocacy" (speech urging a yes or no vote for or against a candidate or measure).

 

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Nevada Assembly Bill 99

 

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Assembly Bill 99, Accommodating LGBTQ Youth in the Foster Care System: Passed 18 to 2 in the state Assembly on April 4, 2017.

 

To revise statutes and require new regulations pertaining to the Nevada foster care system to require that  youth in out-of-home placements must be treated, in all respects, in accordance with the child's gender identity or expression, regardless of their assigned sex at birth.

 

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Florida House Bill 589

 

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House Bill 589, Increase Prescription Drug Price Transparency: Passed 38 to 0 in the state Senate on May 5, 2017.

 

To enhance the price transparency of prescription drugs in Florida. Currently, consumers can research prescription drug prices at www.MyFloridaRx.com (MyFloridaRx). Information provided includes the usual prices charged by pharmacies for 150 of the most commonly prescribed brand name drugs and generic equivalents. This bill doubles the number of prescription drugs posted to MyFloridaRx to 300.

 

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Colorado Senate Bill 017

 

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Senate Bill 017, Protect People with Stress Disorders from Punishment over Medical Marijuana: Passed 34 to 0 in the state Senate on May 24, 2017.

 

To create a statutory right to use medical marijuana for patients with acute stress disorders or post-traumatic stress disorders. The bill creates the same rights, limitations, and criminal defenses and exceptions as the constitutional right to use medical marijuana.

 

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Arizona House Bill 2388

 

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House Bill 2388, Modify State College Grant Program by Easing Some Requirements and Tightening Others: Passed 26 to 0 in the state Senate on April 19, 2017.

 

To extend the life of a government program that gives state taxpayer subsidies to college students, while modifying certain program qualifications including more stringent GPA and graduation time frame requirements, expanding program eligibility to other fields, and other similar changes.

 

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Wisconsin Senate Bill 293

 

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Senate Bill 293, Make Changes to School Choice Programs: Passed 67 to 30 in the state Assembly on June 21, 2017.

 

To require that private schools participating in school choice programs conduct background checks on employees, to remove certain requirements such as high attendance standards for private schools participating in the program, and to eliminate testing requirements on private schools that have a small number of school choice students attending, among other things.

 

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West Virginia Senate Bill 174

 

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Senate Bill 174, Exempt Home Movers From Certain Regulations: Passed 29 to 3 in the state Senate on February 17, 2017.

 

To exempt the transportation of household goods from the jurisdiction of the Public Service Commission.

 

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Virginia Senate Bill 872

 

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Senate Bill 872, Override Veto of Requirement for Photo ID for Absentee Ballots: Failed 20 to 19 in the state Senate on April 5, 2017.

 

To overturn the governor’s veto of legislation that requires that anyone requesting an absentee ballot by mail to include a copy of his or her photo ID with the request. Exempt from this requirement are military and overseas voters as well as voters with disabilities.

 

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What to Do About North Korea?



North Korea – a key part of President George W. Bush’s “Axis of Evil” – recently completed a successful launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile. That is grave news for anyone concerned about what would happen if North Korea obtains a nuclear weapon that could deliver a nuclear blast as far away as Alaska). However, there is no consensus among United States, South Korea, China, and other nations about what can be done in response.

 

U.S. conflict with North Korea dates back to the 1950s, when North Korea invaded South Korea. The U.S. joined forces with the United Nations in military action to repel the invasion. In more recent times, American foreign policy towards North Korea has been aimed at preventing it from obtaining nuclear weapons. President Clinton tried traditional diplomatic engagement, while Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama supported sanctions.

 

Regardless of U.S. policy, however, North Korea’s leaders continue the nation’s unique path on the world stage. North Korea is a highly isolated country ruled by the communist dictator Kim Jong-un, who replaced his father, Kim Il-Sung.

 

North Korea has consistently reneged on arms control agreements aimed at stopping its nuclear program, and it has made steady progress towards obtaining nuclear weapons technology and developing missiles capable of carrying these weapons.

 

Like his predecessors, Donald Trump has few good options for dealing with this rogue state. He has suggested that China should do more to handle North Korea because China is one of the few nations that has a relationship with the nation. But Chinese officials push back strongly against suggestions that they could do more to corral Kim.

 

What do you think the U.S. should do with North Korea? Do favor more diplomatic talks with the country? Should the U.S. undertake military action? Should President Trump and Chinese leaders work more closely together to see what can be done?

 

Tennessee House Bill 261

 

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House Bill 261, Delay Collecting Internet Sales Tax: Passed 31 to 0 in the state Senate on 9 May, 2017.

 

To delay collecting the sales tax on Internet sales until the conclusion of a court case over the legality of such a tax.

 

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Pennsylvania Senate Bill 172

 

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Senate Bill 172, Allow Speed Cameras in Some Work Areas: Passed 45 to 3 in the state Senate on 10 July, 2017. 

 

To allow the use of speed cameras in areas where workers are located on the roadway or shoulder areas of a limited-access highway. Anyone who is caught on a speed camera going at least 11 miles an hour over the speed limit would receive a fine of $100.

 

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Ohio House Bill 111

 

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House Bill 111, Allow Nurses to Involuntarily Commit Patients for Mental Health Assessment: Passed 96 to 0 in the state House on March 30, 2017.

 

To allow certain clinical nurse specialists and certified nurse practitioners to have a person involuntarily committed for a mental health examination.

 

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North Carolina House Bill 746

 

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House Bill 746, Allow Concealed Carry of Handguns Without a Permit: Passed 64 to 51 in the state House on June 8, 2017.

 

To relax several state laws concerning handguns, especially to allow lawful handgun owners, with certain restrictions, to carry openly or concealed without a permit.

 

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New Hampshire House Bill 350

 

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House Bill 350, Kill Bill to Ban Guns in Polling Places: Passed 203 to 144 in the state House on 15 February, 2017.

 

To end consideration of a bill that would prohibit possession of a firearm at a polling place during a federal, state, or municipal election. A yes vote kills the bill for the legislative year.

 

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Nevada Senate Bill 153

 

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Senate Bill 153, Limit the Presumption That Certain Diseases in Police and Firefighters are Work-Related: Passed 36 to 6 in the state Assembly on May 22, 2017.

 

To limit the presumption that heart and lung diseases contracted by police and firefighters are work-related for the purposes of industrial insurance and disability benefits. Under current law, these diseases are presumed to be job-related when contracted by all police or firefighters with certain years of service. The bill would reduce the period of time in which the disease must be diagnosed after leaving the job, restrict the ability of those who use tobacco or do not follow doctors’ recommendations from collecting benefits and limit the benefits paid to those who are diagnosed after retirement to medical benefits only.

 

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Missouri Senate Bill 5

 

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Senate Bill 5, Expand Regulation of Abortion: Passed 20 to 8 in the state Senate on June 15, 2017.

 

To modify several provisions of state law relating to abortion, including: (1) requirements for post-abortion tissue reports; (2) giving the attorney general jurisdiction over abortion laws; (3) preempting local government abortion regulations; (4) whistle-blower protections for reporting violations of abortion laws; (5) the definition of abortion facilities and licensure of doctors in those facilities; and (6) requirements for regular inspections of abortion facilities.

 

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