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Michigan Senate Bill 242

 

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Senate Bill 242, Authorize Giving State Revenue to Chinese Company and Some Others: Passed 71 to 35 in the state House on July 12, 2017.

To authorize giving up to $200 million of state revenue to certain business owners, in particular a Chinese company said to be involved in iPhone manufacture. Earlier this year the Legislature also authorized up to $1.8 billion in state payments benefiting Detroit developer Dan Gilbert and possibly some others.

 

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Iowa Senate Bill 524

 

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Senate Bill 524, To Allow the Production and Distribution of Cannabis Oil on a Limited Basis: Passed 33 to 7 in the state Senate on April 21, 2017.

 

Under current law, Iowans can possess cannabis oil for the treatment of epilepsy (though its production is prohibited). This bill allows for two companies to make the oil and five to distribute it, and allows its use for a number of ailments including Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis and a terminal illness.

 

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Florida House Bill 1027

 

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House Bill 1027, Regulate Drones and Robots: Passed 115 to 0 in the state House on May 5, 2017.

 

To create size and speed requirements for personal delivery devices, such as robots. This bill allows these devices to operate on sidewalks when delivering property. This bill also gives the state the authority to regulate unmanned aircraft systems, commonly known as drones, and prohibits local governments from regulating the use of drones unless it is regarding an illegal act. Additionally, this bill allows drones to be used for commercial delivery.

 

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Colorado House Bill 1367

 

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House Bill 1367, Authorize Marijuana Clinical Research: Passed 35 to 30 in the state House on May 10, 2017.

 

Create a marijuana research program. The bill would create multiple licenses governing possession of marijuana for research purposes and growing marijuana for research. The bill makes appropriations of $226,000 for enforcement and legal compliance.

 

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Arizona Senate Bill 1071

 

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Senate Bill 1071, Create a System of Provisional Licencing for Ex-Offenders: Passed 56 to 0 in the state Senate on April 4, 2017.

 

To allow, with certain structural protections focused on public safety, for provisional or permanent licencing under the various state occupational licencing laws for former non-violent criminal offenders.

 

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Wisconsin House Bill 356

 

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House Bill 365, Mandate Insurance Coverage of Pre-Existing Conditions: Passed 62 to 35 in the state House on June 22, 2017.

 

To mandate that health insurance policies regulated by the state cannot exclude coverage for pre-existing conditions if there has been no gap in someone’s insurance coverage.

 

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West Virginia House Bill 2099

 

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Senate Bill 2099, Make Leaving the Scene of a Car Crash Involving Death or Injury a Felony.: Passed 96 to 0 in the state House on 17 February, 2017.

 

To make leaving the scene of a car crash crash involving death or personal injury a felony, commonly referred to as "Erin's Law."

 

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Virginia Senate Bill 1105

 

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Senate Bill 1105, Override veto of investigating inflated voter rolls: Failed 21 to 19 in the state Senatea on 5 April, 2017.

To override the governor’s veto of a bill requiring local boards of elections to investigate when the number of voters in a county or city exceeds the number of people in that area who are 18 years old or older. This bill directs the local board of election to determine if anyone is improperly registered.

 

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Tennessee House Bill 1291

 

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House Bill 1291, Remove Marijuana Jurisdiction From ABC: Passed 30 to 0 in the state Senate on May 4, 2017.

 

To remove the Alcoholic Beverage Commission’s jurisdiction to enforce criminal offenses involving marijuana.

 

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Pennsylvania Senate Bill 383

 

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Senate Bill 383, Allow Some School Employees to Carry Firearms: Passed 28 to 22 in the state Senate on June 28, 2017.

 

To permit local boards of education to allow some school employees to carry firearms. These employees must be licensed to carry firearms and undergo a psychological examination.

 

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Ohio Senate Bill 1

 

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Senate Bill 1, Increased Penalties for Drug Trafficking: Passed 27 to 6 in the state Senate on March 29, 2017.

 

Increases the penalties for drug trafficking and aggravated funding of drug trafficking convictions and, in most cases, drug possession convictions, when the drug involved is a fentanyl-related compound, included expanded mandatory minimum sentences.

 

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North Carolina Senate Bill 569

 

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Senate Bill 569, Reorganize State Law Addressing Powers of Attorney: Passed 114 to 0 in the state House on June 27, 2017

 

To clean up state law addressing powers of attorney (where someone has appointed another person to make decisions on their behalf). Current statutes concerning powers of attorney are spread throughout state law; this bill would put them together. It does not apply to health care powers of attorney.

 

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New Hampshire House Bill 604

 

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House Bill 604, Kill Bill to Subsidize Community College Tuition: Passed 188 to 161 in the state House on February 15, 2017

 

Kill Bill to Subsidize Community College Tuition

 

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Nevada Senate Bill 440

 

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Senate Bill 440, Require transportation network companies, like Uber and Lyft, to obtain written agreements from major hotels before drivers may pick up passengers at these locations: Passed 32 to 8 in the state Senate on June 1, 2015.

Require transportation network companies, like Uber and Lyft, to obtain written agreements from major hotels before drivers may pick up passengers at these locations

 

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Missouri Senate Bill 182

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Senate Bill 182, Ban Union Preference on Government Contracts Passed 23 to 9 in the state Senate on May 15, 2017.

 

To prevent the state or local governments from requiring or giving preference to bidders for public works projects who are parties to union contracts, or discriminating against those who are not, for any project involving taxpayer funding.  Currently there is a 50% state funding threshold for the non-discrimination provisions to kick in.

 

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Michigan Senate Bill 245

 

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Senate Bill 245, Repeal Switchblade Ban: Passed 106 to 1 in the state House on June 20th, 2017

 

To repeal the state law against owning, selling or possessing a switchblade knife, “the blade or blades of which can be opened by the flick of a button.” Reportedly the ban is outdated and unevenly enforced.

 

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Iowa House Bill 518

 

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House Bill 518, To change the state's law on worker's compensation: Passed 29 to 21 in the state Senate on March 27, 2017

 

To change several parts of Iowa's law on worker's compensation, including to let companies deny a claim if an employee tests positive for drug use. The bill also creates a program for workers with shoulder injuries to undergo retraining.

 

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The Hunt for Vote Fraud

 

President Trump has not been shy about raising questions about voter fraud or election integrity. He brought it up repeatedly during his campaign for president, and discussions of fraudulent votes and stolen elections have been occurring across the political spectrum since November. Now the president is working to resolve this issue on a national level.

 

His latest action on this front is the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity. This commission has requested that states provide the names of registered voters as well as their addresses, dates of birth, political party affiliations, last four digits of social security numbers, and voting history going back to 2006. The commission does qualify the request by asking only for information that is publicly available.

 

This request has caused a lot of controversy with state election officials and the public. Some states are complying, others are refusing, and some are only supplying partial information. State officials are under no obligation to provide this information to this commission.

 

Supporters of the commission say it is necessary to examine the rolls of registered voters to see if they contain non-Americans, felons who are barred from voting, and people registered in multiple states – and then to see if these ineligible voters have cast ballots.

 

Opponents of the commission claim that this is a way to purge the voting roles of minority votes and others. They say that this is just another attempt to suppress voting and disenfranchise voters.

 

There are different aspects to the issue of election integrity. One pertains to voter registration rolls. Because these rolls may not be updated often or checked against other databases, they may contain the names of people who have died, people who have moved to another state, or those who are legally ineligible to vote for other reasons, such as citizenship status. Another issue is whether those ineligible voters have actually voted.

 

As is so often the case, the debate over these matters is tied up in partisan politics. Many Republicans want stricter scrutiny of voting, contending that it is necessary to ensure that only those who are eligible to vote do so. Democrats, meanwhile, attack such scrutiny as attempts to suppress the votes of people who are likely to vote Democratic.

 

What do you think? Do you support efforts to examine the voting rolls more closely? Or do you think that this effort is nothing more than a way to keep certain people from voting?

 

U.S. Senate Bill 722

 

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Senate Bill 722, Impose sanctions on Iran: Passed 98 to 2 in the U.S. Senate on June 15, 2017

 

To impose sanctions blocking the assets of individuals who contribute to Iran’s ballistic missile program or who sell military equipment to Iran. The bill also gives the president authority to impose sanctions on anyone in Iran who engages in torture or extrajudicial killings.

 

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Florida House Bill 141

 

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House Bill 141, Expand the number of bottles craft distilleries can sell: Passed 114 to 2 in the state House on April 26, 2017 and passed 37 to 0 in the state Senate May 5, 2017

 

To allow craft distilleries to sell six individual containers of each product to customers per year from their gift shop. Currently, craft distilleries can sell two individual containers of each product per customer.

 

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