Midwest

Stateline Midwest ~ July/August 2012

Nationwide, property taxes account for about one-third of total state and local government revenue. They could have been abolished this year in North Dakota in one fell swoop — via a proposed constitutional amendment that appeared on the June ballot.

Stateline Midwest ~ July/August 2012

Representation of women in state elective office has increased in the Midwest over the past 35 years, but since the late 1990s, the gains have slowed — and even stopped in some instances. Exactly why the percentages have flat-lined since the 1990s is unclear, much like some of the other questions involving the under-representation of women in state government.

Stateline Midwest ~ July/August 2012

Question: How many states in the region have adopted renewable portfolio standards, and how far along are the states in meeting them?

Answer: In the Midwest, 10 of 11 states — all but Nebraska — have passed a renewable or alternative energy portfolio standard or voluntary goal.

Renewable portfolio standards (RPS) require that a certain percentage of...

Stateline Midwest ~ July/August 2012

In 2000, more than half of the U.S. states were fully funding their state pension systems. By 2010, Wisconsin stood alone as the only state that had set aside enough money to meet 100 percent of its long-term pension liabilities.

Perhaps most concerning of all, funding levels in 2010 were below 80 percent in 34 states, including Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, North Dakota and Ohio....

Stateline Midwest ~ July/August 2012

Name the hot-button issue in state government these days, and it’s likely to appear this fall on a statewide ballot somewhere in the Midwest.

In Minnesota, voters will decide whether to join the seven other Midwestern states with a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage (see time line below). The state’s residents will also likely determine the fate of a controversial photo-ID requirement...

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