Recent court cases across the nation have shown that the interstate compact mechanism must interact with all three branches of state and federal government. CSG National Center for Interstate Compacts Special Counsel Rick Masters, co-author of the book The Evolving Law and Use of Interstate Compacts, provided an update on recent developments in the courts impacting the creation, implementation and administration of interstate compacts.

Among the many concerns currently facing America’s health care system, few are more significant, both medically and fiscally, than long-term care, or LTC. With the continuing rise in the population of U.S. citizens 65 and older—statistically, the demographic most in need of LTC—states need to begin preparing for the growing pressures that will be placed on their budgets as a result of the nation’s aging population.

State leaders are focused on skill development and apprenticeships as the way forward in increasing labor participation and attracting mid- and high-wage jobs to their states. As states and businesses continue to recover from the Great Recession, both are attempting to do so in a new environment. The 21st century has seen two historic shifts related to economics and workforce development. The first is the return of manufacturing jobs to the United States and the second is the new technological requirements of these jobs. While job opportunities continue to grow, today’s factories employ fewer people but require greater levels of technical knowledge from employees.

The election of Donald J. Trump in November left some state transportation advocates scratching their heads about the role states and localities will need to play in the years ahead to ensure that progress on transportation continues, that priorities are maintained and that future investments reflect those priorities.

Global conflicts, health risks, populist political movements and changing attitudes toward trade all represent unpredictable influences on global economic stability, which has significant impact on states’ economies. In 2016, the world saw a number of political and trade issues—such as the United Kingdom’s decision to exit the European Union, also known as Brexit, and Americans’ resistance to international trade agreements—emerge unexpectedly that will continue to resonate in 2017. With little certainty as to how these and other issues will play out, global economic instability will be the most important international issue facing states this year.