Public Safety

State eNews Issue #38 | January 20, 2010
 

Kentucky has a pretty good program for monitoring the dispensation of prescription drugs.

The Kentucky All Schedule Prescription Electronic Reporting system—or KASPER for short—requires anyone who writes a prescription in the state to report it to the system within seven days, said Dave Hopkins, KASPER program manager.

The Adam Walsh Act sets a minimum national standard for state sex offender registries and  notification laws and has the potential to overhaul sex offender laws across the nation. The act, which is divided into seven titles, calls for a more detailed, uniform and nationalized system of sex offender registries; addresses issues of child pornography, Internet safety and civil commitment; creates grants for electronic monitoring; and revises the Immigration and Nationality Act to address immigrants who are sex offenders.

In the 2007–2008 legislative biennium, state legislatures considered at least 1,500 bills related to sex offenders; at least 275 of those bills became law. Six states—Arkansas, Montana, North Dakota, Oregon, Nevada and Texas—did not hold a regular legislative session in 2008.

State eNews Issue #37 | January 6, 2010

With the new year comes new funding opportunities for controversial needle exchange programs targeting injection drug users and meant to combat the spread of diseases—mainly HIV/AIDS—passed  through dirty needles.

Some states such as New York have hosted these needle swaps for years, praising their ability to stop the spread of HIV/AIDS and other blood-borne diseases by providing clean syringes to...

NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that The Council of State Governments urges the Congress and the administration work with CSG’s members on developing alternatives to REAL ID, such as PASS ID, that will allow states to actively participate in the development and implementation of a more secure and sustainable DL/ID system.

NOW BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that The Council of State Governments urges the Congress and the administration to work with CSG and CSG’s members as PASS ID moves through the legislative process to ensure, to the greatest extent possible, that the legislation includes increased privacy protections, minimizes the cost burden to states, and continues ongoing and substantive stakeholder coordination.

The Council of State Governments encourages lawmakers to investigate the effects of human trafficking in their own states and act to pass legislation that will address these activities

The Kentucky Re-entry Hotline, which provides support to people fresh out of prison, was one of eight national Innovations Awards in 2009 from The Council of State Governments.

CSG South

Every year, the global $10 billion dollar human trafficking industry deprives individuals of their human rights and freedoms, increases global health risks and fuels the growth of organized crime. Centering around the most vulnerable, exploited and dehumanized people in the world, human trafficking affects women and children, as well as men and boys, and is carried out for a variety of purposes, most notably forced labor and sexual servitude. It is a problem that has endured for centuries, despite modern efforts by countries throughout the world to thwart the heinous practice. While the United States has, in many ways, been an international leader in this regard, the problem persists. Individual states are now taking up the responsibility of assessing how this practice affects people who live within their own borders and what they can do to further combat this problem.

Economic uncertainty in January 2008 evolved into a full-blown recession by the year’s end, impacting everything in its wake, from state budgets to mortgages and from college endowments to car loans. American consumers dealt with rising food costs, plummeting home values and jobs cuts while riding a rollercoaster of fluctuating gas prices. The downturn has meant the loss of sales, income and property taxes, which could have serious ramifications for important state government functions such as emergency management and homeland security. Complicating the fiscal challenges is the first transition of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to a new administration. This has led to a debate over the continued placement of the Federal Emergency Management Agency within Homeland Security. Yet even as that discussion ensues, the most destructive hurricane to hit U.S. soil since 2005—Ike—and the November 2008 terrorist attacks in Mumbai, India, serve as reminders that an all-hazards approach to emergency preparedness and experienced leadership are the real answers to threats, whether they are natural or man-made.

Suggested State Legislation: This Act attempts to balance the need for housing registered adult sex offenders with citizen concerns about housing such offenders in residential areas. The Act generally limits the number of registered sex offenders who can live together in residential housing at two. However, it grants exceptions to this rule and gives cities and counties the authority to exceed the limit if the cities and counties meet certain criteria when locating residential housing for registered sex offenders.

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