Policy Area

Experts say an education in science, technology, engineering, arts and math—or STEAM—is essential to building an innovative workforce in the United States, and the sooner students delve into STEAM education, the better.

Soon after U.S. House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio shook up Capitol Hill by announcing his retirement at the end of October, Congress narrowly avoided a government shutdown by passing a funding bill that will keep the federal government operational until December.

On Sept. 21, news that Turing Pharmaceuticals raised the price of a 62-year-old drug by 4,000 percent overnight made headlines. The drug, Daraprim, is critical to the care of HIV and AIDS patients. The sharp rise in price from $18 to $750 per pill is part of the all-too-familiar trend of drug-price spiking in the United States and highlights concerns about the sustainability of health care.

It’s opening day at the Supreme Court!

With at least 20 cases more to accept between now and the end of January, what issues of interest to states is the Court likely to agree to hear in the near future?

The Department of Labor awarded more than $39.3 million in grants last week to enhance unemployment insurance programs in 43 states. “For more than 80 years, the unemployment insurance system has been a crucial lifeline for millions of working people who lost their job through no fault of their own,” said U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez in a press release. “These grants will help states use every tool at its disposal to ensure payments are available to those who are eligible, and take important steps to reduce and recover improper payments. The funds will also identify new ways to level the playing field for responsible employers.”

Arizona is asking the federal government to allow it to add work requirements and lifetime eligibility limits for some adults enrolled in Medicaid, Stateline reported today. The request, which is in the form of a Section 1115 waiver request, is required under laws passed by the 2015 Arizona State Legislature. Senate Bill 1475 and Senate Bill 1092 require the governor to submit the waiver but do not link continuation of the current Medicaid expansion to the waiver’s approval. Former Gov. Jan Brewer vetoed nearly identical legislation the year before, the Arizona Daily Star reported in March 2015.

According to research from the Department of Commerce by Jeffrey Hall and Chris Rasmussen, goods exports (manufactured products, agricultural products, natural resources and used/second-hand products) supported 7.1 million jobs in 2014 – up one million jobs, or 16.4 percent, over 2009 levels. In 2014, export-supported jobs made up 5.1 percent of total employment. The importance of goods exports to states, however, varies significantly. In Alaska and Washington for example, goods exports support more than one out of ten jobs. In 16 states, exports support 3 percent or less of total employment. From 2009 to 2014, exports have become even more important to job growth. Over this period, the number of jobs supported by exports grew in all but seven states. 

Twenty-two state legislators and one governor's health policy advisor from states gathered in Washington, D.C. on Sept. 21-23, 2015, for a CSG-led Medicaid Leadership Policy Academy. Almost 50 percent of the attendees were chairs or vice-chairs of health committees in their home states. A significant number...

Today 10 years ago John Glover Roberts Jr. became the 17th Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court. Roberts Court decisions have affected everyone from average Americans to Guantanamo Bay detainees. But what about states and local governments? This article provides a brief analysis of how the Roberts Court has impacted 10 areas of interest to states and local governments: federalism, preemption, race, free speech, religion, public employment, qualified immunity, Eighth Amendment, Fourth Amendment, and gun control.

According to new data from the U.S. Census Bureau, real median household income in Wyoming was higher last year than it was before the Great Recession - one of only 13 states that can make the claim. When adjusted for inflation, annual income in Wyoming has grown slightly (by $33) since 2007 to $55,690 in 2014 - above the U.S. median of $53,657. For the country as a whole, inflation-adjusted median household income fell by $3,700 - or 6.5 percent - from 2007 to 2014.