Latest Legislation News

FILE - In this March 25, 2020 file photo, Vermont House Speaker Mitzi Johnson, left, wears a mask while talking to a lawmaker in the Vermont house chamber at the Statehouse in Montpelier, Vt.  In state capitols across the U.S., lawmakers have ditched decorum and sidestepped traditional public meeting requirements in a rush to pass legislation funding the fight against the coronavirus and aiding residents affected by the widespread shut down of commerce. (AP Photo/Wilson Ring, File)

Legislatures meet remotely, limit public as virus spreads

Mar. 29, 2020 4:05 PM EDT

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Members of the Arkansas House met in a college basketball arena, spaced out among 5,600 seats, as they voted on ways to cover a budget shortfall caused by the coronavirus punch to the economy. When South Dakota lawmakers convene Monday to consider 10 emergency bills, it won't be...

Law to stop dental insurance waiting periods on Maine books

Mar. 29, 2020 3:09 PM EDT

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — A new law that prohibits insurance companies from requiring waiting periods before covering tooth decay in children is on the books in Maine. The proposal from Democratic Sen. Heather Sanborn of Portland was intended to make sure children have timely access to dental care. Democratic...

Lawmakers considering emergency bills for COVID-19 fight

Mar. 29, 2020 2:11 PM EDT

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — Gov. Kristi Noem has asked South Dakota lawmakers to act Monday on 10 pieces of emergency legislation aimed at a months-long COVID-19 fight. The emergency legislation covers a range of issues, including pushing local elections back until at least June, allowing the secretary of...

New law mandates Indiana schools test for lead contamination

Mar. 29, 2020 9:21 AM EDT

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Drinking water fountains and taps at public and private schools in Indiana will be required to be tested for lead contamination by 2023 under a new state law. The law requires schools' drinking water equipment to be tested by Jan. 1, 2023 and take action if results show lead at higher...

Alaska residents to use tax credits to increase air quality

Mar. 28, 2020 5:56 PM EDT

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Local governments in Alaska will be able to create and utilize property tax credits to increase energy efficiency and air quality under a bill passed by the Legislature. The Senate approved the bill with a 17-1 vote on Thursday. The measure now heads to Republican Gov. Mike Dunleavy...

Signs outside the state Capitol in Little Rock, Ark. include reminders about social distancing due to the coronavirus outbreak, Friday, March 27, 2020. The state Senate met at the Capitol to take up a plan to set up a $173 million rainy day fund to address a budget shortfall projected because of the outbreak. (AP Photo/Andrew Demillo)

Arkansas creates COVID-19 fund as 2 more die from virus

Mar. 28, 2020 3:59 PM EDT

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Arkansas' governor signed legislation early Saturday creating a $173 million fund that he can use to respond to the coronavirus outbreak, and health officials said two more people have died from the virus in the state. Gov. Asa Hutchinson's signature moves the state's surplus into...

FILE - In this Feb. 3, 2020, file photo, Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa., walks at the Capitol in Washington. The nation's fiercest fiscal conservatives are largely embracing the massive economic rescue package moving through Congress. In many cases, those conservatives who support the $2 trillion coronavirus spending bill are the very same who raged against the $800 billion economic stimulus package backed by the Obama administration after the 2008 financial crisis. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Hawks no more: Fiscal conservatives embrace rescue package

Mar. 28, 2020 1:45 PM EDT

NEW YORK (AP) — Republicans who have spent the past decade howling about the danger of ballooning deficits embraced the coronavirus rescue package approved by Congress and signed by President Donald Trump, shrugging off past concerns about spending in the face of a public health crisis. In many cases, the...

Medical staff members arrive for a duty shift at Dongsan Hospital in Daegu, South Korea, Friday, March 27, 2020. The new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms for most people, but for some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness or death.(Lee Yong-hwan/Newsis via AP)

The Latest: UN says 86 staffers around world reported cases

Mar. 28, 2020 1:40 AM EDT

The Latest on the coronavirus pandemic. The new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms for most people. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness or death. TOP OF THE HOUR: — U.N. says 86 staffers around world have reported cases of...

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of Calif., accompanied by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of Calif., and other legislators, participate in a bill enrollment ceremony for the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, after it passed in the House, on Capitol Hill, Friday, March 27, 2020 in Washington. The $2.2 trillion package will head to Trump's desk for his signature. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Keeping your distance no problem in House virus debate

Mar. 28, 2020 12:16 AM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — They sprayed. They wiped. At least two donned gloves. Politicians love to promise to clean house in Washington. For a change Friday, they followed through when the actual U.S. House of Representatives confronted the coronavirus outbreak with the biggest stimulus bill in history. The...

Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky., talks to reporters before leaving Capitol Hill in Washington, Friday, March 27, 2020. The nation's fiercest fiscal conservatives are largely embracing the massive economic rescue package moving through Congress. In many cases, those conservatives who support the $2 trillion coronavirus spending bill are the very same who raged against the $800 billion economic stimulus package backed by the Obama administration after the 2008 financial crisis. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

GOP's Massie outrages House, Trump by seeking to stall vote

Mar. 28, 2020 12:15 AM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — Rep. Thomas Massie has always gone his own way in Congress, ever since he first ran for office inspired by a fellow libertarian-leaning Kentuckian, Rand Paul. Now in his fourth term, the Republican from northern Kentucky has frequently voted no on issues large and small, even against the...