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Sunday, May 19, 2024

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4 dead as severe storms hit Houston, TX; Election Protection Program eases access to voting information; surge in solar installations eases energy costs for Missourians; IN makes a splash for Safe Boating Week.

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The Supreme Court rules funding for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is okay, election deniers hold key voting oversight positions in swing states, and North Carolina lawmakers vote to ban people from wearing masks in public.

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Americans are buying up rubber ducks ahead of Memorial Day, Nebraskans who want residential solar have a new lifeline, seven community colleges are working to provide students with a better experience, and Mississippi's "Big Muddy" gets restoration help.

Economic Policy/Justice

A previous Bloomberg grant laid the groundwork for significant initiatives, such as the city's solar array and passage of the Issue 7 transportation levy. (jonbilous/Adobe Stock)

Wednesday, May 15, 2024

Empowering Cincinnati: Bloomberg grant fuels climate and equity initiatives

Cincinnati is part of Bloomberg Philanthropies' $200 million Sustainable Cities initiative and will hire three new staff members to merge climate solu…

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Sen. John Rizzo, D-Independence, said 2024 has been a year of delays in the Missouri General Assembly. The budget came one week later than usual, and even agriculture bills required the support of Democrats. (Helistockter)
Last-minute Missouri House budget heads to governor

Missouri's House of Representatives approved a budget of about $51 billion just before a Friday 6 p.m. deadline. Gov. Mike Parsons has labeled it …

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Alabama has a unionization rate of 7.5%, which is lower than the national average. In 2023, 156,000 people in Alabama's workforce belonged to a labor union. (Adobe Stock)

Monday, May 13, 2024

Workers at AL Mercedes Benz plants to make union decision

Today, workers at the Mercedes Benz plants in Vance and Woodstock, Alabama, will decide whether to form a union. More than 5,000 employees are …

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Organizations tracking guaranteed income programs say there have been roughly 30 pilot initiatives tested across the country within the past few years. (Adobe Stock)
Checking pulse of guaranteed income programs

Wisconsin is among the states where guaranteed-income programs have been tested. A new report says, despite controversy, similar efforts are useful …

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In a new poll commissioned by the Rural Democracy Initiative, nearly half of rural voters indicated they would vote for a culturally aligned rural Democrat over a Republican businessperson from an urban area on the East Coast. (Adobe Stock)
New poll shows rural voters aren't pigeonholed on key topics

Former President Donald Trump is expected to appear at a Minnesota fundraising event later this month. It comes amid new polling data in battleground …

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In a new poll commissioned by the Rural Democracy Initiative, nearly half of rural voters indicated they would vote for a culturally aligned rural Democrat over a Republican businessperson from an urban area on the East Coast. (Adobe Stock)
New poll outlines rural voter priorities, but party labels cloud results

President Joe Biden was in Wisconsin on Wednesday, touting plans for a new Microsoft data center. The visit comes amid new polling data in …

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A special session of the Missouri Legislature to complete the budget may be needed if it is not finalized by Friday at 6 p.m.(luzitanija/Adobe Stock)
Critical child care funding hangs in balance as Missouri budget nears deadline

Child care advocates are pushing for increased funding as the budget deadline approaches this Friday. Robyn Schelp, director of policy and advocacy …

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In 2018, America's top billionaires paid just 23% of their income in taxes, according to Americans for Tax Fairness. (Adobe Stock)
Report: America’s wealthiest now worth a record $5.8 trillion

The nation's billionaires have doubled their wealth over the past seven years, while working people in West Virginia and elsewhere continue to face …

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While immigrants make up 10% of Oregon's population, they make up 13% of the working-age population ages 16-64, and a corresponding 13% of the labor force. (Natalie Kiyah, Oregon Food Bank)
'Food for All Oregonians' aims to extend food benefits to immigrants

Oregon advocates are shining a spotlight on hunger and related issues ahead of the fall elections. A recent report from the Immigrant Research …

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In addition to claims of price gouging, consumer advocates say corporate consolidation has harmed grocery shoppers. (Adobe Stock)
Federal findings stoke more debate about grocery profits

Wisconsinites don't spend as much on groceries compared with other states. However, consumer groups say shoppers everywhere are still feeling the …

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The Vera Institute estimated more than 760,000 incarcerated people became eligible for Pell Grants when access was reinstated in 2023. (Adobe Stock)
VA can bolster higher education access for incarcerated people

Virginia advocates believe more can be done to make higher education accessible to incarcerated people. Only a handful of community colleges partner …

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The Center for Responsible Lending has reported 70% of payday loan borrowers take out a new loan the day they pay off another loan and nearly 75% of the revenue earned by payday lenders comes from borrowers who take out 10 or more loans per year.(jetcityimage/adobe stock)
Michigan lawmakers target predatory loan companies

Michigan legislators are tackling predatory lending practices, aiming to set standards for payday loans and maximum interest rates. In Kent County …

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