Kelley Arnold

Author Articles

Regulatory reform has been a major theme of President Donald Trump’s administration and a longstanding priority of The Council of State Governments. CSG often hears from state leaders that when it comes to Washington, D.C., states are treated like stakeholders rather than partners.

The Council of State Governments and the National Conference of State Legislatures assembled a national task force to focus on workforce development efforts targeting people with disabilities in the states. This task force had four subcommittees composed of state policymakers along with non-voting stakeholders from the private sector and academia. The last in a four-part series that coincides with the subcommittee topics, this CSG policy brief highlights the recommendations from the Entrepreneurship, Tax Incentives and Procurement, or ETIP, subcommittee of the National Task Force on Workforce Development and Employability for People with Disabilities. This research brief builds on the work of the ETIP subcommittee by further exploring the role that states can play in supporting entrepreneurs with disabilities through education, training and technical assistance strategies.

Six Questions County Leaders Need to Ask
by Risë Haneberg, Dr. Tony Fabelo, Dr. Fred Osher, and Michael Thompson

Not long ago the observation that the Los Angeles County Jail serves more people with mental illnesses than any single mental health facility in the United States elicited gasps among elected officials. Today, most county leaders are quick to point out that the large number of people with mental illnesses in their jails is nothing short of a public health crisis, and doing something about it is a top priority.

Over the past decade, police, judges, corrections administrators, public defenders, prosecutors, community-based service providers, and advocates have mobilized to better respond to people with mental illnesses. Most large urban counties, and many smaller counties, have created specialized police response programs, established programs to divert people with mental illnesses charged with low-level crimes from the justice system, launched specialized courts to meet the unique needs of defendants with mental illnesses, and embedded mental health professionals in the jail to improve the likelihood that people with mental illnesses are connected to community-based services.

Risk and needs assessments are now routinely used in correctional systems in the United States to estimate a person’s likelihood of recidivism and provide direction concerning appropriate correctional interventions.1 Specifically, they inform sentencing, determine the need for and nature of rehabilitation programs, inform decisions concerning conditional release, and allow community supervision officers to tailor conditions to a person’s specific strengths, skill deficits, and reintegration challenges. In short, risk and needs assessments provide a roadmap for effective correctional rehabilitation initiatives. When properly understood and implemented, they can help correctional organizations to provide the types and dosages of services that are empirically related to reductions in reoffending.

With this statement of principles, The Council of State Governments (CSG) calls on Congress to seek solutions to the long-term solvency of the Highway Trust Fund prior to the expiration of the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act in 2020. CSG also expresses support for the efforts of states in their traditional role as the laboratories of democracy to experiment with transportation funding mechanisms. And CSG expresses its opposition to any federal legislation or executive action that would eliminate the federal tax exemption on municipal bonds.

WHEREAS, state governments collect vast sums of data—from disease outbreaks and marriage records to public school enrollments and crime statistics—as they manage a wide range of public programs; and

WHEREAS, the amount of data state governments collect will continue to increase; and

WHEREAS, states and communities across the nation are overwhelmed by the current epidemic of opioid abuse and addiction and they are struggling to respond and to ameliorate the problem; and

WHEREAS, the number of drug overdose deaths in 2014 exceeded the number of deaths due to traffic accidents; and

WHEREAS, the peaceful transition of knowledge and power from one president to another is a hallmark of American democracy; and

WHEREAS, the administration, Congress, and others should work actively with the states to ensure that the Presidential transition is efficient and worthy of the American people; and

WHEREAS, a secure, reliable and resilient power grid integrating generation resources serves as a foundation of a growing economy and is critical to our national security; and

WHEREAS, regulators, policymakers, and consumers expect generating resources and the grid to perform extremely reliably; and

WHEREAS, the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) (Pub. L. 113-128) was signed on July 22, 2014, and WIOA is the first legislative reform of the public workforce system in more than 15 years; and

WHEREAS, WIOA creates a new vision for how America prepares an educated and skilled workforce that expands opportunity for all workers, provides a customer-focused one-stop delivery system, and enhances and increases coordination among key employment, education, and training programs; and

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