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Working Together for Change Understanding the importance of the state/federal relationship

Ringing in New State Laws COVID-19, mental health among priorities in new legislation

CSG Task Forces Release Reports Member-driven collaboration results in public policy recommendations for states

Essential Resources Monitor up-to-date federal stimulus payments

SERVING WITH EXCELLENCE CSG South Director Colleen Cousineau leaves CSG after 38 years

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The Council of State Governments is the nation’s largest nonpartisan organization serving all three branches of state elected and appointed officials. CSG champions excellence in state government to advance the common good.


Join us.


ISSUE 1 / 2021

Colleen Cousineau, director, CSG South/Southern Legislative Conference


Colleen Cousineau, director of CSG South/Southern Legislative Conference is leaving CSG after 38 years, 32 of which she served as a regional director.


A record number of U.S. citizens voted in the 2020 elections, securing seats for incumbents as well as a new wave of first-time legislators. Explore data from the polls.

RINGING IN NEW STATE LAWS A new year ushers in new additions to state lawbooks. Despite the ongoing pandemic in 2020, states not only address the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, but also continued to serve the needs of their constituents in areas such as elections, taxation, domestic violence, equal rights, health, education and criminal justice.


As new lawmakers are sworn in — many serving for the first time — and a new president occupies the Oval Office, it is more important than ever to understand the roles of the state and federal governments, how the relationship works and how it has changed over time.


Under the leadership of CSG South/Southern Legislative Conference Director Colleen Cousineau, the Southern region has provided trusted advice to state leaders, convened to explore pertinent policy topics, pursued impactful research and developed networks. She leaves behind a legacy of great service after 38 years at CSG.










20 The Essential State/ Federal Relationship

6 Honoring Black History In celebration of Black History Month, CSG honors a few truly monumental firsts in state government including the first Black state legislator, the first Black governor and the first Black woman to be elected to a state senate.



Despite challenges in 2020, as governors from across the country delivered their annual state of the state addresses, many focused on a renewed sense of home and belief that better days are ahead.

10 Where You Belong

28 CSG Members Tackle Key

Encompassing four regions, 50 states, six territories, all three branches of government and nearly 15,000 members, The Council of State Governments champions excellence in state government. Learn more about how CSG works for you.

Public Policy Issues

CSG is releasing the reports of its Healthy States National Task Force and its Future of Work National Task Force, as well as shorter summaries that include a checklist of suggested state strategies and opportunities.

12 Democracy in Action

32 Your Road to Success

A record number of U.S. citizens voted in the 2020 elections, securing seats for incumbents as well as a new wave of firsttime legislators. Explore data from the polls.

Supporting state leaders in their commitment to public service is one of the key components of The Council of State Governments. Discover national and regional leadership development opportunities for resources and networking opportunities.

15 State Stimulus Payments



The CARES Act established payments to state, local and tribal governments to help navigate the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak. Check on payments to each state as of January 2021.



16 Ringing in New State Laws





24 Serving with Excellence Under the leadership of CSG South/Southern Legislative Conference Director Colleen Cousineau, the southern region has provided trusted advice to state leaders, convened to explore pertinent policy topics, pursued impactful research and developed networks. She leaves behind a legacy of great service after 38 years at CSG.

8 State of the States David Biette, director, CSG East/Eastern Regional Conference

As new — many first-time — lawmakers are sworn in and a new president occupies the Oval Office, it is more important than ever to understand the roles of the state and federal governments, how the relationship works and how it has changed over time.

A new year ushers in new additions to state lawbooks. Despite the ongoing pandemic in 2020, states not only address the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, but also continued to serve the needs of their constituents in areas such as elections, taxation, domestic violence, equal rights, health, education and criminal justice.

35 Meet the New Director of CSG East

David Biette has been named the new director of CSG East/Eastern Regional Conference. Biette served the last three years as the deputy director of CSG East and will succeed long-time director Wendell Hannaford who retired at the end of 2020.

40 Final Facts How much do you know about the winged friends that represent the states? Grab a pair of field glasses and check out these state bird feathery facts.

Gov. Laura Kelly

Rep. Joan Ballweg

KANSAS CSG National President

WISCONSIN CSG National Chair


Graphic Designers

DAVID ADKINS dadkins@csg.org

THERESA CARROLL tcarroll@csg.org


STEPHANIE NORTHERN snorthern@csg.org

KELLEY ARNOLD karnold@csg.org

Managing Editor BLAIR HESS bhess@csg.org

JESSICA RUSHER jrusher@csg.org

Email capitolideas@csg.org

Associate Editor JOEL SAMS jsams@csg.org Hon. Ted Arnott, Speaker ONTARIO, CANADA CSG East Co-Chair

MPP Gila Martow,

Member of the Provincial Parliament ONTARIO, CANADA CSG East Co-Chair

Contributing CSG Staff Writers MARY ELIZABETH LONERGAN mrobertson@csg.org

SARAH NEEDLER sneedler@csg.org

ROGER MOORE rmoore@csg.org

Sen. Gary Cammack SOUTH DAKOTA CSG Midwest Chair

Speaker Cameron Sexton TENNESSEE CSG South Chair

CSG CAPITOL IDEAS, ISSN 2152-8489, ISSUE 1, Vol. 69, No. 1 – Published five times annually by The Council of State Governments, 1776 Avenue of the States, Lexington, KY 40511-8536. Opinions expressed in this magazine do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Council of State Governments nor the views of the editorial staff. Readers’ comments are welcome. Subscription rates: in the U.S., $42 per year. Single issues are available at $7 per copy. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to CSG Capitol Ideas, Sales Department, The Council of State Governments, 1776 Avenue of the States, Lexington, KY 40511-8536. Periodicals postage paid at Lexington, Ky., and additional mailing offices. Mailing lists are available for rent upon approval of a sample mailing. Contact the sales department at (800) 800-1910. Copyright 2021 by The Council of State Governments. An accessible version of this publication is available upon request. Please email capitolideas@csg.org.

Rep. Jeni Arndt COLORADO CSG West Chair

30 SFI-01681

David Biette

Colleen Cousineau

CSG EAST DIRECTOR dbiette@csg.org

CSG SOUTH DIRECTOR fitzgerald@csg.org

Michael H. McCabe

Edgar Ruiz

CSG MIDWEST DIRECTOR mmccabe@csg.org

CSG WEST DIRECTOR eruiz@csg.org


David Adkins CSG EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR/CEO dadkins@csg.org




Announcing the 2021 CSG Policy Academies The CSG Policy Academy series provides customized training and a deeper dig on critical policy topics facing the states. During the year, policy academies are typically invitation-only, serving members whose work is directly impacted by the issues at hand. Policy academies convened at the annual CSG National Conference, however, are open to all conference attendees. The 2021 lineup includes: • CSG Medicaid Leadership Academy, Sept. 29 – Oct. 1, Washington, D.C. • CSG 2022 Forecast for Legislative Leaders, Oct. 2021, Dates and Location TBD • Dec. 1 – 4, Santa Fe, New Mexico - CSG Privacy & Cybersecurity Policy Academy - CSG Sustainability Policy Academy - CSG State Medicaid Programs 101 Policy Academy.

New CSG University Connects and Advises Freshman Legislators CSG University is a four-part series that aims to help new state policymakers jumpstart their time in legislative service and find success in their new roles while introducing newly elected legislators to their peers from around the country. In each session, seasoned state policymakers and senior staff will share their experiences and expertise to help equip new legislators with best practices and resources on a range of topics, including communicating with constituents and leading a committee hearing, as they begin their service in the legislature. Sessions include What Does Success Look Like (Feb. 8), The ABCs of Communicating with Constituents (Feb. 22), Dream to Draft: How to Write Effective Legislation (March 8) and Planning a Productive Committee Meeting (March 22). To learn more, visit csg.org/events/conferencecalendar.aspx.

Assessing State Policies and Practices for Occupational Licensing Occupational licensing has grown exponentially over the last 60 years. Nearly one in four of all employed U.S. workers, including nurses and teachers, are in a profession that requires an occupational license. Since early 2017, The Council of State Governments has worked with the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) and the National Governors Association (NGA) Center for Best Practices to produce resources designed to help state policymakers better understand the variances in licensing laws and the challenges they present for many workers. Their new report provides multiple policy examples on occupational regulation and reviews policy trends from all 50 states ranging from structural changes in overall licensing regulation to smaller and targeted approaches aimed at reducing barriers for a certain occupation or population group. To view the full report, visit csgovts.info/3nDMd1I.

To learn more or to register, please email registration@csg.org.

Disability-Inclusive Telework for States ISSUE 1 2021 | CSG CAPITOL IDEAS

State Strategies for Public Policy


CSG released the reports of its Healthy States National Task Force and its Future of Work National Task Force, as well as shorter summaries that include a checklist of suggested state strategies and opportunities. While the state examples and intricate narrative around each recommendation are outlined in each report, the checklist offers a visually scannable list of directives, potential investments and legislative opportunities, as well as partnership ideas that can guide states in addressing some of the themes outlined in the report. Learn more on page 28 of this magazine. The reports and checklists are available on their respective websites at web.csg.org/healthystates and web.csg.org/futureofwork.

States are increasingly developing and implementing telework policies and programs for state government employees. Through the State Exchange on Employment and Disability, The Council of State Governments and its partners at the U.S. Department of Labor Office of Disability Employment Policy published a report highlighting state approaches to increasing access and inclusion through telework. “DisabilityInclusive Telework for States” provides guidance to state policymakers on developing more inclusive telework policies and programs. It includes an overview of workplace protections under the Americans with Disabilities Act and details the components of state telework programs and how each can be modified to better accommodate all employees. To read the report, visit: csgovts.info/392FB8h.

THEY T WEETED IT Tram T. Nguyen @TeamTram • Dec 17, 2020 I’m thrilled to be a part of this virtual ceremony w/ elected& appointed officials — all under 40 —from across the country who exemplify strong leadership skills & demonstrate a true commitment ot public service. TY @CSGovts for this 20 under 40 leadership award & congrats to all

Kathy Tran @KathyKLTran • Dec 18, 2020 I joined the @CSGovts 2020 conference yesterday to talk about how inclusive telework policies can support greater workforce participation and employment success for people with disabilities. As our economy recovers, we must ensure that no one is left behind.

Sen. Emily Randall @SenEmilyRandall • Dec. 17, 2020

Senator Tony Vargas @TonyVargas • Dec 24, 2020 I’ve been named a national top “20 Under 40” @CSGovts elected official!

As the proud son of Peruvian immigrants, a #firstgen college grad, a former public school teacher, a former @TeachForAmerica + @AmeriCorps member, and a current State Senator, this recognition means a lot.

Sara Howard @saraehoward1 • Dec 18, 2020 Yesterday I finished packing up my office. What an amazing privilege to sit in the same chair as some of my HHS heroes. Onward! #neleg #nextsteps Mask swag courtesy of @CSGovts !!!

Honored to celebrate the accomplishments of young leaders all over the nation today with @CSGovts! Winning the CSG 20 under 40 award is a testament to the way my community has raised me: to serve my neighbors, to amplify every voice, to lead with compassion and courage.

CDE What Can You Do? @CDETweets • Jan 7, 2021

In support of @GovMikeDeWine’s EO establishing #Ohio as a Disability Inclusion State & Model Employer of Individuals with Disabilities, @OhioOOD’s @KevinMIllerOH

discussed the state’s Vocational #Apprenticeship Program on a @CSGovts webinar. #StateStandout ISSUE 1 2021 | CSG CAPITOL IDEAS




Alexander Twilight Alexander Twilight of Vermont became the first Black state legislator when he was elected to the Vermont House of Representatives in 1836. Twilight was the first Black man to receive a college degree in the United States and was the only Black person to be elected to a state legislature prior to the Civil War.

In honor of Black History Month, CSG celebrates a few truly monumental firsts in state government.




Jonathan Jasper Wright In 1870, the South Carolina legislature appointed Jonathan Jasper Wright to the state supreme court, making him the first Black person to serve as a state supreme court justice. Wright came to the bench after becoming the first Black man to be admitted to the South Carolina Bar.



John Roy Lynch

Crystal Bird Fauset

Velvalea “Vel” Phillips

John Roy Lynch was the first Black individual to serve as a state house speaker upon his election as Speaker to the Mississippi House of Representatives in 1872. He went on to secure another first in 1884 when he became the first Black person to deliver a keynote address at the Republican National Convention.

In 1938, the voters of Pennsylvania voted the first Black woman into a state legislative seat. Crystal Bird Fauset began her career as a public school teacher in Philadelphia, but went on to not only serve as a state legislator, and went on to serve not only as a state legislator, but also as race relations director in President Roosevelt’s Office of Civil Defense. Fauset founded the United National Council of Philadelphia.

Velvalea “Vel” Phillips was the first Black woman to hold an elected statewide executive office when she was sworn in as Wisconsin’s secretary of state in 1979. Phillips was the first Black woman in Wisconsin to graduate from the University of Wisconsin at Madison Law, be elected to the Milwaukee City Council and become a judge.




Pinckney Benton Stewart Pinchback

Cora Mae Brown

Douglas Wilder

Elected in 1952, Cora Mae Brown was the first Black woman to be elected to a state senate. Prior to representing Detroit in the Michigan Senate, Brown served as a social worker, Detroit police officer and a private practice attorney. Following her time in the Michigan Senate, Brown would go on to serve as special general counsel for the U.S. Post Office during the Eisenhower Administration.

Lawrence Douglas Wilder became the first elected Black governor in the U.S. when he was sworn in as the 66th governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia in 1990. Wilder is a Korean War Veteran and received a Bronze Star for combat. Wilder is also an accomplished chemist, lawyer and legislator.

P.B.S. Pinchback was a Louisiana legislator, a Union Army officer and the first Black person to serve as governor of a U.S. state. In his position as senate president pro tempore, he became the acting lieutenant governor of Louisiana after the death of the serving incumbent. In 1872, he served as acting governor of the state during the impeachment hearing of Henry Clay Warmoth.




state of the


Last year was certainly a year of unique challenges and situations for leaders in every state and U.S. territory. However, as governors delivered their annual state of the state addresses, many focused on a renewed sense of hope and belief that better days are indeed ahead. CSG wanted to take an opportunity to highlight the aspirational, motivational and inspiring words from this year’s round of gubernatorial addresses.

If there’s an upside to the unique circumstances, it’s that for this year’s address we have more people than ever watching us live from across the state. What we’ve lost in ceremony, we’ve gained in citizen engagement. — GOV. DOUG DUCEY Arizona | Jan. 11

…Thanks to all of you, and our amazing scientific community which has developed a safe and effective vaccine in less than one year, there is a hopeful light on the horizon, our state and our nation are on the mend, and Connecticut’s comeback is happening. — GOV. TED LAMONT


Connecticut | Jan 6


…The pandemic also reminds us that in troubled times, we have choices. We can choose compassion over conflict. Listening over lecturing. Humanity over hostility. These choices start with each one of us, individually, in our hearts. It is a concept that aligns perfectly with the fiercely independent and self-reliant spirit of the people of Idaho. — GOV. BRAD LITTLE Idaho | Jan. 11

Some people look at the upcoming session and predict that it will be acrimonious and accomplish little. I wholeheartedly disagree with that assessment. I expect us to meet the challenge of the moment and to pass legislation that will give our health care workers and public the tools needed to defeat the Coronavirus. — GOV. ASA HUTCHINSON Arkansas | Jan. 12

Ladies and gentlemen, coming off 2020, I’m convinced 2021 can be the best ever. So, the central question before us all is, how can we seize this day? Thankfully, in Indiana, our capabilities will be aided by our momentum for sure, but we must not slow down. In fact, we must accelerate, and “go-go-go! — GOV. ERIC HOLCOM Indiana | Jan. 19

The way that Kansans have stepped up these past 10 months has been nothing short of heroic — from health care workers to first responders, teachers and parents, farmers and ranchers — the character of Kansas has been on full display. — GOV. LAURA KELLY, Kansas |Jan. 12

And, as our statewide vaccination program continues to grow, we will begin to see the light on the horizon get a little brighter. Be assured, we will get back to being able to gather and celebrate with our families and friends. We will be able to see all our children back in the schools they love. We will see our economy recover and flourish. — GOV. PHIL MURPHY New Jersey | Jan. 12


North Dakota | Jan. 22

— GOV. PHIL SCOTT Vermont | Jan. 7

But I know this, Nevadans are battle born. We face our challenges head on. And we will get through this difficult time together, because the State of our State is determined, resilient and strong. — GOV. STEVE SISOLAK Nevada, Jan. 19

Ladies and gentlemen, now is our time to be bold in tackling the tough issues. Now is our time to be fearless in examining our flaws. Now is our time to reject hate and make opportunity available to all Utahns. Now … is our time to push.

In Washington state, we know how to succeed. We’ve proven it. Why not do it again? It’s time to take back the torch. Our careers, our dreams, our lives: We are getting back on track.



Utah | Jan. 21

Washington, Jan. 12

We are not competitors; we are all on the same team. A team with different jerseys representing different ideas, philosophies, perspectives and experiences — but a team none the less — committed to doing what we think is best for the future prosperity, success, health and happiness of over five million South Carolinians.” — GOV. HENRY MCMASTER South Carolina | Jan. 13


Today the State of the State is one of optimism and new beginnings built on our confidence of overcoming adversity and the knowledge that we will emerge stronger than ever. Here today, we pause for reflection in the midst of a fight that is not yet over but one in which we are gaining positive ground and making significant progress daily, thanks to the incredible efforts of our federal, state, and local partners, communities, businesses, families, faith-based organizations, nonprofits, and the citizens of North Dakota.

The memories that stand out the most aren’t the tough calls, praise or criticism. It’s the image of Vermonters coming together to support one another, to care for each other, to light the way out of darkness.


CSG is Where You Belong Learn more about how The Council of State Governments works for you


The Council of State Governments is the nation’s largest nonpartisan organization serving all three branches of state elected and appointed officials. CSG champions excellence in state governments to advance the common good and brings together state leaders from 56 states and territories to discuss public policy issues of mutual importance and to support interstate partnerships and collaborative relationships.


CSG founded by Toll.

Henry Wolcott Toll, a Colorado state senator, created the American Legislators' Association



The organization executes this mission through four major platforms — its national office, its four regional offices, the CSG Justice Center and its affiliated organizations — in order to offer unparalleled national, regional and policy-specific opportunities for officials to network, collaborate, problem-solve and form life-long partnerships. CSG is an extension of your staff and is here to work for you.

Illinois state Sen. T.V. Smith III becomes first CSG national chair.

Washington, D.C., office opened.

The Book of the States first published.

Eastern Regional Conference, or ERC, established.



CSG Suggested State Legislation (now Shared State Legislation) program launched.


State Government News (now CSG Capitol Ideas) first published.

Midwestern Legislative Conference, or MLC, established.


New CSG Headquarters building in Lexington, Kentucky, dedicated.

Southern Legislative Conference, or SLC, and CSG West established.





CSG National

CSG Affiliated Organizations

The CSG national office, located in Lexington, Kentucky, houses many national projects, publications and special initiatives that foster collaboration and community between elected and appointed officials from across the country and the six U.S. territories. At the CSG national headquarters, staff work within the CSG Center of Innovation and the CSG National Center for Interstate Compacts and on national projects including CSG Capitol Ideas magazine and the CSG Henry Toll Fellowship.

CSG is home to 10 affiliated organizations that also serve as partners for many of its projects. Those include: american probation and parole association association of air pollution control agencies

CSG Regions CSG East | CSG Midwest | CSG South | CSG West

military interstate children’s compact commission

The regional offices allow state officials to connect on shared issues that are geographically based, including federal lands, water rights, agriculture, border relations and more. CSG regional offices also host conferences, in-state visits and leadership development programs that allow officials to network regionally. The regional offices also incorporate the Eastern Regional Conference, Midwestern Legislative Conference and the Southern Legislative Conference.

national association of state facilities administrators national association of state personnel executives national association of state technology directors

CSG Justice Center

national emergency management association

The CSG Justice Center brings together state and local officials along with subject matter experts to discuss challenges and best practices in policy areas directly related to issues of public safety and justice. Learn more at csgjusticecenter.org.

national hispanic caucus of state legislators state international development organizations women in government

MLC Bowhay Institute for Legislative Leadership Development established.

CSG Henry Toll Fellowship established. Alumni: 1,326




ERC's Robert J. Thompson Eastern Leadership Academy established.

CSG West's Western Legislative Academy established.



CSG Center of Innovation established.

CSG national headquarters SLC's Center for the Advancement of rededicated and a new address adopted: Leadership Skills 1776 Avenue of the established. States.

CSG's National Center for Interstate Compacts established.


CSG Justice Center becomes a national resource.






American Probation and Parole Association affiliates with CSG.

CSG Associates Program established.


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U.S. citizens broke voter turnout records across the country during

the 2020 election, securing seats for incumbents as well as a new wave of first-time legislators. While fewer than 10 states elected more

first-time legislators than were voted in during the previous election cycle, freshmen elected officials still maintain an impactful percentage of state legislatures across the country.

First-time State Legislators Over the Past Two Elections Total # of Legislators

First-Time Legislators in 2019

2019 First-Time Legislators as % of total seats

First-Time Legislators in 2021





No 2020 legislative elections



































































































No 2018 legislative elections










No 2020 legislative elections











29 (No Senate elections)











2021 First-Time Legislators as % of total seats

No 2020 legislative elections 22.00%

Total # of Legislators

First-Time Legislators in 2019



No 2018 legislative elections

























New Hampshire






New Jersey


No 2018 legislative elections

New Mexico






New York






North Carolina






North Dakota






























Rhode Island






South Carolina






South Dakota
































No 2018 legislative elections







West Virginia



















2019 First-Time Legislators as % of total seats

First-Time Legislators in 2021

2021 First-Time Legislators as % of total seats

No 2020 legislative elections

No 2020 legislative elections

No 2020 legislative elections

For more 50-state comparative data tables on a variety of topics, check out the 2020 Book of the States. Volume 52 includes 195 in-depth tables, figures and infographics illustrating how state government operates. CSG mined more than 500 sources to obtain the information shared in this year’s edition. Discover more at csg.org/publications.


2020 Book of the States Now Available


Increase in General Election Voter Turnout I n the 2020 general election, voter turnout increased in

population turnout in the 2020 election. Redistricting data from the Census will not be available until the end of March, and more specific data will not be available until July.

every state. The following graphic is based on data from the PEW Research Center, the U.S. Census Bureau and the United State Election Project, and it reflects estimated voting-eligible

+10.4 +10.6 +8.1 +8.0 +4.6 +7.9



+5.2 +6.0

+6.6 +6.3

+11.1 +10.9 +11.0


+6.1 +8.7 +7.6


+8.1 +2.5



+5.2 +4.3 +3.6


+6.9 +5.9

+6.4 +9.4 +6.1 +4.0




+3.0 +3.7


+4.5 +4.3







Estimated voting-eligible population turnout in the 2020 election






Percent within each state represents percentage increase from 2016-20 according to the PEW Research Center


CORONAVIRUS RELIEF An update of federal stimulus funds distribution to states and localities The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act established payments to state, local and tribal governments to help navigate the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak. This $150 billion Coronavirus Relief Fund issues funds to states, eligible units of local government, Washington, D.C. and the U.S. territories, including Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa and the Northern Mariana Islands, as well as tribal governments.

The figures below represent the distribution of federal funds to states and their eligible units of local government as of January 2021. To learn more about eligible uses of fund disbursements, visit treasury.gov.

Total Allocation $15,321,285 $11,243,461 $8,328,221 $7,543,325 $4,964,107 $4,913,633 $4,532,573 $4,117,019 $4,066,866 $3,872,510 $3,444,164 $3,309,738 $2,952,756 $2,822,400 $2,672,641 $2,648,085 $2,610,490 $2,379,853 $2,344,277 $2,257,711 $2,233,011 $2,186,827 $1,996,469 $1,901,262 $1,802,619

Kentucky Oregon Oklahoma Connecticut Alaska Arkansas Delaware Hawaii Idaho Iowa Kansas Maine Mississippi Montana Nebraska Nevada New Hampshire New Mexico North Dakota Rhode Island South Dakota Utah Vermont West Virginia Wyoming

Payment to State $1,598,595 $1,388,507 $1,259,073 $1,382,478 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $927,233 $862,824 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,034,052 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,083,866 $836,051 $1,250,000 $1,067,817 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $934,766 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000

Total Allocation $1,732,388 $1,635,472 $1,534,358 $1,382,478 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000 $1,250,000

Source: The United States Department of Treasury; Federal Funds Information for States. Monetary distributions as of Jan. 31, 2021.


California Texas Florida New York Pennsylvania Illinois Ohio Georgia North Carolina Michigan New Jersey Virginia Washington Arizona Massachusetts Tennessee Indiana Missouri Maryland Wisconsin Colorado Minnesota South Carolina Alabama Louisiana

Payment to State $9,525,565 $8,038,314 $5,855,807 $5,135,625 $3,935,169 $3,518,945 $3,754,115 $3,502,871 $3,585,391 $3,080,690 $2,393,851 $3,109,503 $2,167,079 $1,856,988 $2,460,842 $2,363,434 $2,442,177 $2,083,702 $1,653,268 $1,997,295 $1,673,850 $1,869,921 $1,905,115 $1,786,346 $1,802,619

Amounts paid to the states, territories and eligible local governments are based on population as provided in the CARES Act.


new year brings new state laws ALABAMA | Gas Tax Increase – HB 2

CALIFORNIA | Transgender Respect, Agency and Dignity Act – SB 132

Increases the gas tax by 2 cents per gallon. It is part of a multi-year, 10 cent increase that began in 2019. The 2021 increase is the last scheduled increase and will bring the tax rate to 28 cents for gas and 29 cents for diesel. * goes into effect Oct. 21, 2021

Requires the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to ask those entering custody to specify their gender identity. It allows transgender, non-binary and intersex inmates to be both housed and searched according to their gender identity.


ALASKA | Minimum Wage Increase – Alaska Statute 23.10.065(A)


A brand-new year always ushers in new additions to the state lawbooks. Despite the ongoing pandemic in 2020, states not only address the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, but also continue to serve the needs of their constituents in areas such as elections, taxation, domestic violence, equal rights, health, education and criminal justice. Below is a sampling of laws that went into effect on Jan. 1, 2021 (unless otherwise noted) in each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia.

The minimum wage will increase from $10.19 to $10.34. The increase is the result of a 2014 ballot initiative passed by voters requiring the minimum wage to be adjusted annually for inflation. The adjustment is based on the Consumer Price Index for urban consumers in the Anchorage metropolitan area for the previous calendar year.

ARIZONA | Cell Phone Use While Driving – HB 2318 Drivers can be fined if not using their phone in hands-free mode while driving. Drivers can be pulled over for the offense even if no other traffic laws have been violated. First offense fines range from $75 to $149 and repeat offense fines are $150 to $250.

ARKANSAS | Tax Competitiveness and Relief Act – Act 182 The final phase of the Act goes into effect in 2021. It reduces the top income tax rate in the state from 6.6% to 5.9%. In 2020, the first phase reduced the rate from 6.9% to 6.6%.

COLORADO | The Immigrant Tenant Protection Act – Sb 20-224 The act prohibits landlords from asking tenants about their citizenship status. It also forbids landlords from including a citizenship status question on housing applications.

CONNECTICUT | Diabetes Supplies – HB 6003 If a patient has less than a one-week supply of insulin or diabetes-related supplies, pharmacists are required to dispense one 30-day emergency prescription per year. The prescription covers insulin and supplies such as syringes and glucose test strips.

DELAWARE | Single Use Plastic Bags – HB 130 The law prohibits stores with more than 7,000 square feet of retail space or chains with three or more stores each having 3,000 square feet or more of retail space, from providing single use plastic bags at checkout. Retailers may charge customers for reusable or paper bags, but it is not required under the law.

The Address Confidentiality for Victims of Domestic ILLINOIS Violence Act – 750 ILCS 61 Allows victims of domestic violence to use a substitute address instead of their actual address in public records to help prevent perpetrators from finding them.

INDIANA | Transparency in Health Care Pricing – SB 5 Requires hospitals, urgent care facilities and same-day surgery centers to post information on their websites about provided services and associated costs. Information posted must include the weighted average of negotiated charges for the services. Service providers must have the information posted to their website by March 31, 2021.

IOWA | Online Sports Betting Registration – SF 617 Legalizes online registration for sports betting from anywhere in the state. It allows for registration via gaming apps and sports betting websites. Previously, citizens were required to register inside a casino before placing a sports-related bet online.

KANSAS | Commercial Industrial Hemp – Senate Substitute for HB 2167 Allows for the legal cultivation of commercial industrial hemp. Previously hemp was only grown for research purposes. Persons wishing to grow commercial industrial hemp are required to obtain a license and follow regulations established by the Department of Agriculture. * went into effect January 8, 2021

KENTUCKY | Savings and Loan Associations Tax Repeal – HB 458 Repeals the savings and loan tax that previously existed. All savings and loan associations are subject to the corporation income tax and the limited liability entity tax instead of the savings and loan tax.

LOUISIANA | Drivers Education Courses – Act 223 Requires drivers’ education courses to include information and instruction relating to handicapped accessible parking spaces and aisles. Also requires that information to be included on tests taken to receive a driver’s license.

MAINE | Mandatory Paid Leave – SP 110/LD 369

FLORIDA | Greyhound Racing – Amendment 13 An amendment approved by 69% of voters in November 2018 bans the act of greyhound racing in the state. An attempt at overturning the ban was unsuccessful and the lawsuit was dismissed in federal court in June 2020.

GEORGIA | Lacee ’s Law – HB 1125

HAWAII | Sunscreen Ban – SB 2571 Passed and signed in 2018, the newly effective law bans the sale of sunscreen containing oxybenzone and octinoxate. Both chemicals have been proven to be harmful to coral reefs. Hawaii is the first state in the nation to have such a ban.

IDAHO | Idaho Patient Act – HB 515 Establishes steps for health care providers to follow before initiating bill collection litigation against patients. Requires health care providers to bill to a patient’s health insurance company within 45 days of providing a service. Also limits the amount of attorney fees that can be assessed against a patient in collection cases.

MARYLAND | Health Insurance Coverage for In Vitro Fertilization – HB 781 Allows unmarried individuals to have their in vitro fertilization treatments covered by insurance if certain requirements are met. It also reduces the wait time from two years to one year for treatment coverage after an unsuccessful attempt for married and same-sex couples.

MASSACHUSETTS | Nicky’s Law – H 4074/S 2367 Establishes a registry of providers and caregivers with histories of proven abuse. The registry will be managed by the Disabled Person Protection Commission. Any person on the registry cannot be hired or work for the Department of Developmental Services or any of its licensed or funded providers.* went into effect January 31, 2021

Clean Slate” Expungement Legislation – MICHIGAN “ Multi-Bill Legislative Package Reforms and simplifies the state’s expungement processes. Expands the types of offenses eligible for expungement. Changes include an automatic procedure for expunging certain misdemeanors after seven years and certain non-assaultive felonies after 10 years. Also allows a person to set aside marijuana offenses if they would not have been a crime after the use of recreational marijuana became legal. * goes into effect April 11, 2021


Requires state health insurance plans to provide coverage for additional screening to anyone considered high risk for breast cancer due to circumstances such as family history. Previously only those 35 and older were covered. The law is named for teacher Lacee Landrum who was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer at age 29.

Requires private employers with more than 10 employees to provide one hour of paid leave for every 40 hours worked, up to a maximum of 40 hours of paid leave per year. The leave may be used for any reason. It does not apply to seasonal workers, independent contractors, employees working fewer than 120 days in a calendar year, and any employee subject to a collective bargaining agreement during Jan. 1, 2021 and the expiration of the agreement.


MINNESOTA | Sexual Assault Kits – HF 1

NEBRASKA | Indoor Vaping Ban – LB 840

Requires both law enforcement agencies and hospitals to submit unrestricted sexual assault kits to the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension within 60 days. Kits must be stored by the BCA for at least 30 months. Previously, kits were destroyed by agencies at three or six months.

The smoking of electronic cigarettes, also known as “vaping”, is now prohibited in indoor businesses including retail, restaurants, bars and offices. The law amends Nebraska’s 2008 Clean Indoor Act to include an electronic smoking ban where cigarette smoking is prohibited. * went into effect Nov. 14, 2020

NEVADA | Sexual Assault Survivors’ Bill of Rights – AB 176

MISSISSIPPI | Ending Prohibition – HB 1087

Partially enacted on July 1, 2020 and fully enacted Jan. 1, 2021, this new law ensures that every survivor of a sexual assault received is given access to a victim advocate/sexual assault counselor during the entire process of evidence collection. The law also includes a tracking program for forensic kits that also allow victims to receive updates.

Legalizes the possession of alcoholic beverages throughout the state. Mississippi was considered a completely dry state under previous state law, even though counties have been allowed to vote to become wet. The new law does not legalize the sale of alcohol in every county — they are still required to vote to become wet.

NEW HAMPSHIRE | Aggravated DWI for Commercial Drivers – HB 1182

MISSOURI | Raise the Age Act – SB 793

Any person caught driving a vehicle weighing over 10,000 pounds and registering a blood alcohol level of 0.08 or higher, will automatically be charged with an aggravated DWI. Penalties for aggravated DWI in New Hampshire include mandatory fines and mandatory jail time.

Raises the age at which a person can be tried in court as an adult from 17 to 18. The law does allow for certain instances where someone between the age of 12 and 18 can be certified as an adult. Prohibits anyone under the age of 18 from being detained in an adult jail unless they have been certified as an adult.

NEW JERSEY | Daniel’s Law – A 1649 The law prohibits disclosing the home of address of any federal, state or municipal officer, prosecutor, law enforcement — current or retired — or their immediate family members. Daniel’s Law is named for U.S. District Judge Esther Salas’ 20-year-old son Danial Anderl who was fatally shot and killed by a gunman who had found Judge Salas’ address online. * went into effect Nov. 20, 2020

MONTANA | Legalization of Marijuana – Ballot Initiative I-190 Adults over the age of 21 are legally allowed to grow and possess marijuana under the new law. Citizens can possess up to one ounce of marijuana or eight grams of concentrates and can grow up to four plants at their homes. It does not allow for cannabis to be sold commercially until January 2022.

s tat e s w i t h n o m i n i mum wag e r equ i r e d

Alabama Louisiana Mississippi

South Carolina Tennessee


fe d e r al minimum wag e

2019-21 Minimum Wage by State

s tat e s equal to fe d e r al m i n i mum wag e

Georgia Iowa Idaho Indiana Kansas Kentucky North Carolina North Dakota New Hampshire

WA $13.69

Oklahoma Pennsylvania Texas Utah Virginia Wisconsin Wyoming Puerto Rico CNMI

OR $12.00

NV $8.00-9.00 CA $13.0014.00


s tat e s abov e fe d e r al m i n i mum wag e


Alaska Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Connecticut Delaware Florida Hawaii Illinois Maine Maryland Massachusetts Michigan Minnesota Missouri

Montana Nebraska Nevada New Jersey New Mexico New York Ohio Oregon Rhode Island South Dakota Vermont Washington West Virginia District of Columbia Guam U.S. Virgin Islands

MT $8.75 ID $7.25

WY $5.15

CO $12.32

NM $10.50

ME – $12.15

MN $8.21– 10.08

VT – $11.75 WI $7.25

SD $9.25 IA $7.25

NE $9.00

UT $7.25

AR $12.15

ND $7.25

KS $7.25 OK $2.00-7.25

TX $7.25

IL $11.00

MO $10.30

MI $9.65 IN $7.25

OH $10.34

KY $7.25

PA $7.25 WV $8.75

MS n/a*

AL n/a*

AK $10.34

GA $5.15

ML – $11.75 DC – $15.00

SC n/a*

HI $10.10


Employers subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act must pay Federal minimum wage. A range of rates indicates stipulations based on company size, company income, industry, etc. Cities and municipal governments may have set higher rates than the state. * In state where no minimum wage exists, the federal minimum wage applies.


GUAM $8.75

MA – $13.50 RI – $11.50 CT – $12.00 DE – $9.25

VA $7.25

FL $8.65

PUERTO RICO $5.08–7.25

NH – $7.25

NJ – $12.00

NC $7.25

TN - n/a*

AR $11.00

LA n/a*

NY $12.5015.00

CNMI $7.25

NEW MEXICO | The Disclosure Requirements for Private Colleges Act – HB17

TEXAS | Voter Approval for Increased Tax Revenues – HB 693

All state-authorized private universities and colleges must provide the total estimated cost to attend, median amount of student debt incurred and median earnings of recent graduates. The information must also be posted on the institution’s website.

New property tax law requires cities, counties and localities wanting to raise tax revenue by more than 3.5% in a year, to put it before voters in the November general election for approval. The previous rate cap was 8%.

NEW YORK | Child-Parent Security Act – AB 6959

UTAH | Straight-Ticket Voting – HB 70

The Child-Parent Security Act establishes parental rights to those who use assisted reproductive technology (using third party surrogacy or donation) to conceive a child. Parents choosing to use assisted reproductive technology, known as “intended parents”, have legal rights from the moment or birth. *went into effect on February 15, 2021

Utah will no longer offer the ability to “straight-vote” on ballots. Voters will have to vote for their preferred candidate in each race instead of being offered the ability to auto-populate ballots with only the candidates of their preferred party.

NORTH CAROLINA | Mental Health Needs of Students – SB 476

Native Americans belonging to state-recognized indigenous tribes will be issued free hunting and fishing licenses. In order to qualify, tribe members will need to provide a certified form by their appropriate tribal official along with state-acceptable proof of identification.

Requires the state board of education to adopt a school-based mental health policy and requires all K-12 schools to implement a plan that includes mental health training and a suicide risk referral protocol. Topics covered by the training program should include youth mental health, suicide prevention, substance abuse, sexual abuse prevention, sex trafficking prevention and teen dating violence.

NORTH DAKOTA | No new laws. OHIO | Porch Piracy Act – HB 2777 Those convicted of stealing delivered packages left outside a residence, also known as “porch pirates,” will face misdemeanor charges that carry a potential $500 fine and up to a year in prison. The third offense within 60-days carries a possible felony charge. Also, restitution also must be paid to victims.

OREGON | Drug Addiction Treatment and Recovery Act – Ballot Measure 110 This law decriminalizes small amounts of illegal drugs meant for personal use. Those guilty of minor possession will only be charged a fine of up to $100 but must also submit to a mandatory health assessment. After the assessment, drug treatment and recovery program referrals will be provided. *went into effect on February 1, 2021

PENNSYLVANIA | Autonomous Delivery Robots – SB 1199 Personal delivery devices, or PDDs, weighing up to 550 pounds are now legally classified as pedestrians. These devices can use sidewalks, pedestrian areas, roadways and shoulders. The devices are required to yield the right-of-way to human pedestrians and cyclists.

RHODE ISLAND | Parentage Act – H 7541 The Rhode Island Parentage Act repeals the state’s previous paternity law that was viewed as only protecting heterosexual partners who conceived through traditional means. The new law provides protections for all individuals — including members of the LGBTQ community — when establishing parentage, using surrogacy and seeking other assisted reproduction methods.

SOUTH CAROLINA | Administration of Opioid Antidotes – H 3728 This act requires all South Carolina health care facilities and all first responders to report every time an opioid antidote is administered to the state health department. Information reported should include patient information (name, address and birth date) along with the date and type of antidote administered.

VIRGINIA | Driver Privilege Cards for Undocumented Immigrants–HB 1211 Allows undocumented immigrants to obtain driver’s license if they have reported income or can be claimed as a dependent on an individual tax return filed with the Commonwealth of Virginia. It does not grant undocumented immigrants the ability to vote or permit an individual to waive any part of the driver examination.

WASHINGTON | Abusive Litigation – SB 6268 Creates a process that prevents those who have abused an intimate partner from using the judicial system to further abuse a person through lawsuits, proceedings and paperwork. This law gives “considerable discretion” to the courts when deciding to dismiss or deny further litigation from those deemed as intimate partner abusers.

WEST VIRGINIA | Students’ Right-to-Know Act– SB303 Requires the state board of education to provide certain information to students and parents to help with planning for employment after high school. Post-secondary education costs, job prospects, potential job earning and military service information are all included.

WISCONSIN | Veteran-Related Tuition Grants – SB 537 Provides a grant for tuition and fees for veterans attending private nonprofit institutions that are members of the Wisconsin Association of Independent Colleges and Universities. *went into effect on March 3, 2020

WYOMING | Microbreweries – HB 158 Allows for Wyoming microbreweries, those brewing between 50 and 50,000 barrels a year, to have more than one location for producing malt beverages. The previous law required that all production take place at a single location. *went into effect on March 24, 2020

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA | Foam Ban D.C. has amended the ban on businesses serving food and beverage in polystyrene, or Styrofoam, to include additional measures. Stores and retail establishments may no longer sell foam food service items, foam coolers/ice chests or foam “packing peanuts.”

Anyone age 16 or older may consent to a forensic medical exam without the consent of a parent or guardian. However, health providers should take reasonable steps to notify parents or guardians that the exam has taken place.

TENNESSEE | T- CPR Delivery – SB 1958 This act requires the emergency communications board to provide frontline, emergency dispatchers with training and guidelines for telecommunicator cardiopulmonary resuscitations, or T-CPR. Dispatchers are also required to offer T-CPR instruction over the phone to emergency callers or bystanders although callers may decline instruction.

CSG Shared State Legislation Launched in 1941, The Council of State Governments Shared State Legislation (SSL) is a member-driven process detailing topics of current importance to the states. The program’s goal is to facilitate the sharing of legislative ideas among members. Learn more at csg.org/ssl.


SOUTH DAKOTA | Age of Consent for Forensic Medical Exams – HB 1103

VERMONT | Hunting and Fishing Licenses for Indigenous Tribes – H 716


partners in government CSG advocates for the rightful role of the states as partners in the federalist system By Joel Sams

relationship between the states W andat isthethefederal government? Where do the




prerogatives of the one begin and the other end? How has the relationship changed over time, and what steps can state leaders take, today, to best serve their communities?

As a trusted, nonpartisan resource, The Council of State Governments can help answer questions like these and provide resources for state leaders seeking to better navigate the state/federal relationship. Since 1933, CSG has advocated for the proper role of the states in our federal system and continues to serve as a point of connection between the states and the federal government.

The Role of the States In “Federalist Paper No. 45,” James Madison argues that the state and federal governments exist in a symbiotic relationship — both are necessary to promote the happiness and well-being of citizens. Madison goes on to state that state governments are closer to the people and should be related to “the lives, liberties and properties of the people” while the federal government will be concerned with “external objects, as war, peace negotiation and foreign commerce.” But just as the world has greatly changed since the age of Madison, the relationship between state and federal governments has also changed and continues to change, evolve and transform with every passing day. Issues such a pre-emption, public lands, unfunded mandates and, most recently, the COVID-19 pandemic continue to challenge the idea of the equal and cooperative relationship referenced by the Federalist Papers. “Over the course of history, as power shifted toward the federal government, states have been thought of not as drivers, or partners, but as another special interest,” said CSG Executive Director/CEO David Adkins.

 he powers not delegated T to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” — 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution

“What we fight for in this current era of federalism is to reduce the coercive influences of the federal government, to recognize that the states are the laboratories of democracy, and government works better when each state is as strong as it can be and has the ability to learn from every other state.”

“There was no unifying strategy at the federal level, and a lot of things devolved to the states to compete against each other,” Adkins said. “I think going forward, instead of coercion, what we have to have is collaboration and cooperation, and the ability to commit to that in a way that all of the parties are seen as partners, not just states that have to be bailed out, or states that need to be told what to do.” Tim Storey, executive director of the National Conference of State Legislatures, agrees that COVID-19 has drawn attention to the importance of cooperation between the states and the federal government.

For state leaders who want to better navigate the state/federal relationship, Adkins advises networking and open communication — two tools that can go a long way in building a productive partnership. “There are a lot of former governors and a lot of former legislators in Congress — don’t be afraid to reach out to them,” Adkins said. “We’re proud of the fact that many alumni of the CSG Henry Toll Fellowship (p. 10) have been elected to Congress or serve in cabinet positions throughout the federal government. Use that network of former state officials. They speak our language. They know the demands on state government.” Storey advises state leaders to be upfront with federal leaders about how policies will be received on a state and local level. “Make sure your federal delegation knows where you stand on the issues and how they impact your state,” Storey said. “A policy solution may look


The COVID-19 pandemic provides a warning about what can happen when the relationship between the state and federal government breaks down.

“It highlights the necessity of a strong, cooperative partnership — and I emphasize the word partnership,” Storey said. “We are in this together. This country has not seen anything like this for more than a century and there’s been no guidebook on how to address it.”


“Not every solution should come from Washington, D.C. We recognize that state governments are closer to the people.” — CSG Executive Director/CEO David Adkins

good on paper in Washington, but when it is pushed down to the state level, it may be a whole different ball game.” As they seek to better navigate the state/federal relationship, state leaders can take advantage of many CSG resources, and they are always welcome to reach out for advice, research, networking support and more. “Be engaged, stay engaged, and when you need help, we’re there,” Adkins said. “We’ve got your back, we can point you in right direction, we can help you sort through complexity, and we can help get you in front of decision makers that you otherwise might not think you have the ability to reach.”

CSG Resources for Navigating the State/ Federal Relationship ★ p olicy academies

Offered annually, the CSG Medicaid Policy Academy is an annual program that introduces new members of legislatures to how Medicaid works. A well-developed understanding of this state/federal partnership is essential. On average, one out of every three dollars spent by the state goes toward Medicaid. Other policy academy topics have included privacy and cybersecurity, sustainability and a variety of health care and workforce-related issues. Learn more: web.csg.org/forum/csg-policy-academy-series.

★ i nterstate compacts

Through its National Center for Interstate Compacts (NCIC), CSG provides the states a resource to solve regional, bi-state, multi-state or even 50-state issues among themselves. Currently, NCIC is managing and/or advising the drafting, development and implementation of compacts including the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact (IMLC), the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC) & Advanced Practice Nurse Compact, Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology Interstate Compact (ASLP-IC) and more. Learn more about interstate compacts: compacts.csg.org.

Defining the Relationship


CSG national leadership share their perspectives on state/federal issues.


COVID-19 has underscored the need for open lines of communication between both state and federal governments. Constituents call with problems that sometimes, we can’t answer in state government, so it has made offices like mine interact much more with our federal partners. The pandemic is an issue that is affecting everyone across the U.S., so it really has made this relationship even stronger and states have welcomed the fiscal support in response to COVID.”

STATE SEN. JOAN BALLWEG | WI national chair

Work with your state’s leadership and present a coordinated approach to your state’s congressional delegation and to federal agencies. And by working with The Council of State Governments, a strong and united voice can be presented. CSG’s Washington, D.C., office and staff provide important information on what is happening that impacts state governments. Through the CSG website, staff and conferences, I can keep track of issues and get questions answered.”

STATE SEN. SAM HUNT | WA national chair-elect

Continue the Conversation CSG Capitol Ideas Presents: Perspectives on the State/Federal Relationship Tune in for a conversation with CSG national leadership. March 3, 3-4:30 p.m. ET. Register from the digital edition of this magazine or by emailing registration@csg.org.

★ c sg office in washington, d.c.

Located in The Hall of the States, the CSG office in Washington, D.C., serves as an advocate for state governments. The office communicates regularly with congressional, agency and White House officials to ensure the interests of states are known and understood, and helps members understand how their work in state capitols interacts with federal laws and policies. In addition, CSG helps state officials understand how pending and recently passed federal laws will impact their state.

Learn more: csg.org/about/dc.aspx

★ s tate and local legal center

The State and Local Legal Center files amicus curiae briefs in support of states and local governments in the U.S. Supreme Court, conducts moot courts for attorneys arguing before the Supreme Court, and is a resource to states and local governments on the Supreme Court. Learn more: statelocallc.org/

★ c sg intergovernmental affairs committee

The Intergovernmental Affairs Committee is the primary policy body for CSG and the primary body setting the federal-state relations agenda for CSG. It is particularly concerned about federalism issues

STATE REP. JULIA HOWARD | NC national vice chair

The mission of the Intergovernmental Affairs Committee is to serve as CSG's monitoring and advisory arm on major federal issues before Congress and the administration. The committee strives to interpret changing national conditions and to prepare states for the future, and to promote the sovereignty of the states and their role in the American federal system. Learn more: csg.org/about/intergovermentalaffairscommittee.aspx

★ a dvocacy with “the big 7”

CSG serves as a voice for the states along with its partners in the Big 7 — a group of nonpartisan, nonprofit organizations representing state and local government. In addition to CSG, these include the International City-County Management Association, National Association of Counties, National League of Cities, National Conference of State Legislatures, National Governors Association and U.S. Conference of Mayors. In partnership with the Big 7, CSG supports the State and Local Legal Center — a conduit through which partners file briefs in the Supreme Court in support of state and local government. Since 1983, the SLLC has filed about 400 amicus briefs in the Supreme Court.

Pay attention to what the federal government does and what the states' responses are, and become knowledgeable on that subject matter. Know what programs are state-funded and handled, and know what programs are federally funded and handled. Pay attention to the civics lessons you might have missed in high school as far as duties and responsibilities of government. It’s a learning process, and you’ve got to be part of that learning process, and we need entities to help us with the learning process.”

STATE SEN. LOU D’ALLESANDRO | NH immediate past national chair


Whether it’s reaching out to particular part of the federal government to help a constituent or looking for explanations about a particular policy, being patient and being willing to ask questions is the most important part. That’s true for new folks and seasoned folks, but particularly for new lawmakers, who are experiencing some real stress right now. They’re multitasking, addressing the needs of constituents, trying to understand the legislative process and getting acquainted with committee work. All that can be pretty overwhelming in the first few days.”

and other issues impacting states' rights. The bipartisan committee is comprised of officials from all branches of state government, as well as CSG Associate members.




Director looks back on 38 years with Southern Legislative Conference

By Joel Sams


triving for perfection has never been optional for Colleen Cousineau. She expects it of herself; she expects it of her staff; and as its director for 32 years, she has expected it of CSG South/the Southern Legislative Conference (SLC).

Did you know?

Under her leadership, the region has provided trusted advice to state leaders, convened meetings to explore pertinent policy topics, pursued impactful research and developed networks of collaborative communication across state and party lines. To understand her tenure only in those terms, however, would miss an important part of the picture. As she approached the end of her time at CSG, state leaders and staff alike paid tribute not just to her expertise, but also to her friendship and caring spirit. Both as a leader and as a friend, she not only expected excellence — she exemplified it. “Ms. Cousineau’s many warm friendships with Southern state legislative leaders reflect how much her consummate professionalism and decades of service have been appreciated by them,” said CSG Executive Director/CEO David Adkins. “With her resignation, Ms. Cousineau leaves behind a rich legacy of leadership at the CSG Southern Legislative Conference.” Cousineau’s career at CSG was more serendipitous than planned, she says. Armed with a degree in political science and government and administration, in addition to seven years of experience in Georgia state government serving people with disabilities, she was hired to work on a grant for CSG South/SLC in 1980. After the grant was completed, she consulted for the 1982 CSG South/SLC annual meeting, and returned for other projects in 1983. She has served as director of the SLC since February 1989.

Colleen is an accomplished rock drummer and has travelled with a band. “Few of the members know about that!” she says.

“It just evolved from there,” Cousineau said. “I tell people there is rarely a day I didn’t want to go to work in almost four decades. You get tired, but I think few people can say that you wake up with just some joie di vivre, some wonderful opportunity to do myriad things, not have a structured schedule, and sometimes fly by the seat of your pants when a crisis comes up. Who would not want a job that had those sorts of unknowns, and great challenges, but also the opportunity to do remarkable work with remarkable people?” Kentucky Senate President Robert Stivers, who has known Cousineau since the mid-2000s, has appreciated her wealth of knowledge about the region.

Her knowledge went beyond politics, though. Stivers says she also understood what was going on underneath a person’s political life. “My chief of staff, Becky Harilson, and Colleen would stay in touch about how Becky’s husband was doing after open heart surgery,” Stivers said. “She knew my son had

Cousineau speaks during an SLC Executive Committee meeting with former Missouri Senate President Ron Richard (then-SLC chair, right) and former Louisiana House Speaker Taylor Barras (then-SLC chair elect, left).


“I was always amazed by Colleen in one thing — she knew everything that was going on,” Stivers said. “She knew the policy side of it, what the big issues were. She had a pulse on what was going on in every state and who the players were, and that amazed me. But she also knew the people, and to me, that was her big strength. She could say, “Kentucky is working on this, and it could be beneficial in Tennessee, or Alabama is doing this, and Mississippi could join with Alabama.”


“We are the stewards of state money,” she said. “The foundation of our service work is state appropriations, and so that commitment to using those resources as effectively and as carefully as we can, to provide programs and services that are relevant and pertinent, is what really gives me that purpose of going into the office every day.” Fulfilling that duty to the states hinges on others’ contributions as well, and Cousineau considers herself fortunate to have talented and dedicated support in the SLC, both from staff and from the CSG South/SLC executive committee. Additionally, she credits her close association with — and reliance on — her fellow CSG regional office directors with keeping her grounded and focused. “It’s easy to brainstorm, but if you don’t have competent staff to execute those programs and provide the best level of service that you can, you’re just not going to succeed,” she said. “We could not be where we are if we didn’t have that kind of staff in our office. I credit much of my success to my staff and, of course, to the members. The CSG South/SLC executive committee has such trust in me to run the organization, and, by and large, that’s what keeps you going — their support, guidance and trust.”

Cousineau is pictured with then-Arkansas Gov. and former President Bill Clinton during a Washington, D.C., briefing about the Southern Regional Project on Infant Mortality.

just left for the Marines and would ask how he was doing. […] She’s quite the softy, if you really want to know the truth, because she’s always checking in on people.” “Softy” or not, Cousineau lets nothing stand in the way of her pursuit of excellence. “Falling short is not really an option,” she says, and credits her parents, who “loved the possibility of what this nation could become,” as early influences who encouraged her to be her best. Her motivation, though, is largely internal — and it’s intense. “I’m just like a bulldog on a pants leg,” she said, laughing. “Once I get on it, I’m not going to let it go.” A sense of duty to the states, as well as her tenacity, guides Cousineau’s leadership.

In Their Own Words ISSUE 1 2021 | CSG CAPITOL IDEAS

State leaders and staff reflect on Cousineau’s contributions to CSG South/SLC


I can’t imagine SLC without her! When I came into state government service over 30 years ago, Colleen was at SLC. […] She is the consummate professional and a great person to work with. She has been an awesome ambassador for our Southern legislative family and will be sorely missed.” — Cindy Mancuso, executive counsel, Office of the Speaker of the House, Louisiana

Cousineau ranks The Southern Regional Project on Infant Mortality near the top of the achievements of the SLC during her tenure. Running from 1984-1997, the project provided both a foundation and framework for state elected and appointed officials to explore and implement policy interventions that would impact the health and well-being of future generations. “During that period, it made great headway in terms of reducing infant mortality and infant morbidity in the region, and that was a monumental undertaking. The Project was successful because of the collaboration of bipartisan support from governors, legislators and health policy officials,” Cousineau said. “Notwithstanding the tragic issue in and of itself, we recognized that the most effective way to get this in front of governors

[…] As a staff person, I most appreciate the importance she has placed on providing learning opportunities for legislative staff. She is also a true advocate for the Southern states. She understands the importance of tradition within the Southern states but also understands the value of providing the Southern state legislatures with information to compete nationally and globally.” — Marty Garrity, director, Bureau of Legislative Research, Arkansas

Colleen is not only a leader to her states but also to her staff. She is very caring and supportive of her staff — always encouraging them to achieve tasks they perhaps thought they couldn’t achieve. She has the ability to see someone’s potential and encourages them to reach for it.” — Susan Lanter, coordinator, Finance and Events, Southern Legislative Conference

and legislators was to show the fiscal impact of infant mortality and the health of young mothers and the high rate of adolescent pregnancy. So we spent a year just developing the fiscal impact and we took that to all the legislatures in the South and all the governors and had lots of success in moving the needle on reducing infant mortality.”

The “boundless opportunities to affect change” have been some of the most rewarding aspects of her career at CSG, Cousineau says. She emphasizes to her staff that things don’t have to be done the way they’ve always been done — there’s room for innovation and new ideas. Above all, everything must be done with excellence, because that’s what members deserve.

According to Cousineau, the SLC also pioneered the coordination of state primary elections in what has come to be known as Super Tuesday.

“We have to maintain the highest expectation we can,” Cousineau said. “Knowing that staff are there to support members at the same level of high expectation that the members have of their own staff is critical. We have the opportunity to see firsthand the challenges and difficulties that public servants have. We’re not here to judge; we’re here to support them.”

“In 1984, at the Greenbrier in West Virginia, we convened almost every house speaker, senate president and lieutenant governor and basically held strategy meetings as to how we could move the presidential preference primary to March 8 of 1988,” Cousineau said. “While the Southern region was firmly held by Democrats at the time, contrary to popular belief, the objective of Super Tuesday was to ensure presidential hopefuls spent time in the region to learn about our issues, our concerns.” At that time, the 15 states in the Southern region included Maryland, but did not include Missouri, according to Cousineau. The effort was significant — Cousineau says the Southern region has “notebooks and notebooks of every tarmac visit, every visit of every candidate — and it became a significant focus of our work for nearly four years.”

Pictured from left: Cousineau, former Georgia House Speaker Tom Murphy, former South Carolina House Speaker and Ambassador to Canada David Wilkins, former Georgia state Rep. Larry Walker, and former Georgia state Sen., former Georgia Gov. and former U. S. Department of Agriculture Sec. Sonny Perdue.

“And in 1987, at our CSG South/SLC annual meeting in Little Rock, we had six of the presidential hopefuls and two of the Republican hopefuls come and meet with us. Then-Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton was the host. It was managed chaos — but a lot of energy, as you can imagine.” Other achievements of the SLC are many, from legislative staff exchange programs to international delegations to policy workshops and leadership programs, like the Center for the Advancement of Leadership Skills (CALS) and the newly created Staff Academy for Governmental Excellence (SAGE).

[…] I was introduced to Colleen very early in my legislative career (I’ve celebrated my 30th year) and consider her a dear friend, loyal and true, and concerned about me as a person, not just as chief of staff. I will miss her greatly. Congratulations to Colleen with much gratitude.” — Rebecca J. Harilson, chief of staff, Office of the Senate President, Kentucky

Did you know? Colleen is also a mechanic.

— North Carolina state Rep. Julia Howard


She has the unique ability to work with everyone while being a stickler for details and timeliness. […] Colleen is such a talented individual, always wanting to give credit to others, never wanting the spotlight on her, while just doing what it takes to get the job done. I know I am a better person by having the opportunity to know and work with Colleen Cousineau. She will be missed, but Godspeed in her new endeavors.”

She learned the skill by necessity when she was about 18. “If an automobile has a carburetor, I know how to rebuild the engine — particularly if it’s got two SU carburetors.”


CSG National Task Forces Share Results on Two Key Issues Members worked together to collaborate on pressing public policy topics impacting every state. These reports detail more than 80 strategic recommendations to improve public policy.



n early 2019, The Council of State Governments launched two national task forces focused on the future of the workforce and healthy states, each with 50 members from around the country. The CSG Healthy States National Task Force and the CSG Future of Work National Task Force were bipartisan and made up of state government officials from executive and legislative branches as well as a handful of non-voting advisors from the private sector.


Each task force was divided into four subcommittees, and the two-year goal was to convene four times in order to hear from experts, engage in robust discussions, share experiences and develop consensus around the areas of focus for each subcommittee. CSG policy analysts worked alongside each subcommittee to assist with research and fact-finding and to facilitate communication and information sharing in the interim between formal in-person meetings. The goal was that at the end of the two-year period, each task force would develop a framework offering recommendations and innovative solutions paired with state examples and opportunities for addressing pressing policy concerns.

When these task forces first convened in 2019, no one could have anticipated the onset of a global pandemic. However, topics including telehealth, access to broadband and the possibility of a worldwide health crisis were already being discussed. The COVID-19 pandemic added value and importance to the work of both national task forces. One of the realizations that surfaced as these groups convened and conversed during the pandemic is just how interconnected and integral both of the task forces are, as states worked diligently to implement technological solutions to navigate health-related issues while simultaneously working to solve the myriad of impacts resulting from COVID-19 on the workforce, on education, on businesses and on communities and families across the country. The importance of cross-sector work and the value of partnerships in solving our nation’s greatest challenges is now more apparent than ever. CSG is releasing the reports of its Healthy States National Task Force and its Future of Work National Task Force, as well as shorter summaries that include a checklist of suggested state strategies and opportunities. While the state examples and intricate narrative around each recommendation are outlined in each report, the checklist offers a visually scannable list of directives, potential investments and legislative opportunities, as well as partnership ideas that can guide states in addressing some of the themes outlined in the report. These are available on their respective websites at web.csg.org/healthystates and web.csg.org/futureofwork.

Healthy States National Task Force NATIONAL CO-CHAIRS


What’s Next? Leveraging Innovation co-chair, sen. stephen meredith | ky co-chair, rep. elizabeth thomson | nm rep. ruth briggs king | de sen. elaine bowers | ks sen. lou d’allesandro | nh rep. tom demmer | il

rep. shevrin jones | fl rep. nicole macri | wa rep. rena moran | mn sen. carmelo rios | pr sen. george young | ok rep. rick youngblood | id

Capacity, Preparedness and Resiliency co-chair, rep. susan concannon | ks mr. brad richy | id co-chair, assemblywoman tremaine wright | ny rep. cindy ryu | wa rep. chad caldwell | ok commissioner vicki schmidt | ks sen. rhonda fields | co rep. denise tepler | me sen. gayle harrell | fl rep. mat erpelding | id rep. john mizuno | hi sen. randall head | in rep. kim poore moser | ky rep. shelby maldonado | ri

State Health Systems Return on Investment co-chair, rep. pam delissio | pa co-chair, rep. kevin jensen | sd rep. deborah armstrong | nm sen. john bizon | mi rep. ed clere | in rep. karla drenner | ga

rep. debra gibbs | ms sen ferrell haile | tn rep. patricia mccoy | vt secretary courtney phillips | la assemblywoman nancy pinkin | nj delegate matthew rohrbach | wv

Interventions to Save Lives



Workforce of Tomorrow co-chair, assemblyman walter moseley | ny co-chair, sen. lisa keim | me sen. joan ballweg | wi sen. heather carter | az sen. david givens | ky

rep. patsy hazlewood | tn rep. ryan mackenzie | pa sen. mark messmer | in rep. vandana slatter | wa sec. john tilley | ky

What’s Next? Embracing the Future co-chair, deputy commissioner amy carter | ga co-chair, rep. andrew mclean | me sen. juan barnett | ms sen. bill hansell | or assemblyman gordon johnson | nj

rep. corey mock | nd rep. tom phillips | ks rep. lee qualm | sd assemblywoman ellen spiegel | nv rep. kitty toll | vt rep. margie wilcox | al

Smart Government co-chair, sen. marc pacheco | ma co-chair, rep. holli sullivan | in rep. marvin abney | ri sen. stuart adams | ut rep. becky beard | mt delegate mark chang | md

sen. matt hansen | ne cabinet secretary marcia hultman | sd sen. sam hunt | wa rep. stephen ross | nc sen. amy sinclair | ia sen. wesley bishop | la

Equity & Inclusion sen. sara howard | ne sen. joan lovely | ma rep. suzie pollock | mo rep. josh revak | ak ms. heather smith | wi rep. jonathan steinberg | ct

co-chair, rep. andre thapedi | il co-chair, rep. deann vaught | ar assemblyman michael benedetto | ny rep. donna bullock | pa rep. jeff currey | ct sen. jimmy higdon | ky

rep. javier martinez | nm sen. becky massey | tn mr. mike mower | ut rep. john patterson | oh rep. melissa sargent | wi sen. michael von flatern | wy


co-chair, rep. steve eliason | ut co-chair, rep. brigid kelly | oh rep. john allen | az sen. troy carter | la sen. laura fine | il sen. gayle goldin | ri

Future of Work National Task Force


A Look Inside healthy states

The following is a sample from each of the task force reports.

Healthy States

n a t i o n a l t a s k fo r c e


The CSG Healthy States National Task Force began its work in January 2019 with the goal of establishing a national structure for state officials to build the best possible framework for health care in their states. Coming together in an inclusive, nonpartisan space, the state officials on this task force were selected for their knowledge and work in health care and workforce related issues. America spends more money on health care than any other industrialized nation. But when it comes to outcomes, the U.S. isn’t at the top of the heap. This task force knew there was work to be done, and it set out to help states reduce costs and improve outcomes to help communities across the country exist in a more healthy state. When the task force began its work, it could not have predicted the arrival of the COVID-19 virus. However, the task force did anticipate that states should begin to prepare themselves in the areas of health innovation, tech-



The Council of State Governments Future of Work National Task Force set out in June 2019 to analyze workforce issues and determine how to grow state economies. Important topics like education, state governance and the delivery of state services, emerging technology, the evolving economy and equal opportunity and diversity were outlined as important pressing issues that should be addressed.



nology, affordability, capacity, preparedness and access to ensure that state health systems were prepared to meet any challenge. With the arrival of 2020, these topics already being explored by the task force members were no longer areas that required future planning; they had become vital, critical and immediate. The ultimate impacts of the COVID-19 virus on state health systems likely will not be fully known for some time. We do know one thing for sure: state leaders will be able to use lessons learned through innovation and from one another to guide the recovery process and maximize preparedness for future events.

CSG originally convened this task force of state officials and private sector partners to analyze workforce issues and explore how to grow economies and succeed globally. However, when a global health crisis swept across the world in 2020, the focus and priorities of this national task force were quickly realigned to meet the needs of quickly changing landscapes in state education, workforce and technology. While the long-term impacts of this pandemic and its resulting changes are still unknown, state leaders — including those

serving on this national task force — are working to anticipate what the coming years might hold for the future of the country’s workforce. In the past year, states have dealt with the impacts of closed schools and the challenges presented by moving to online learning in the wake of rising cases of COVID-19, but policy conversations will return to how education serves the future of work. State leaders are recognizing the value of putting people first in an economy that will become more tech-centered and internet-based. Virtual court sessions and livestreamed government meetings during the COVID-19 pandemic have shown how smart governments are able to maintain continuity and enhance government services. Additionally, the future workforce will almost certainly include high levels of automation, and opportunities still exist for stakeholders to shape how automation will be introduced to the workplace.

New in 2021 In 2021, CSG will launch its next two-year Healthy States National Task Force, an initiative that will assist states with a variety of health and well-being issues, all of which have been exacerbated by the pandemic. This will include expanding on some of the themes from the previous task forces. The new Healthy States National Task Force will be composed of subcommittees focused on Fiscal Health, Human Health, Economic and Workforce Health and Civic Health. Its first formal meeting will occur virtually in June 2021.


digital divide — the gap between those with access to internet and those who lack access — at both the state and federal levels. Between April and June of this year, state legislatures introduced more than 40 bills addressing some aspect of broadband access.26 State officials in Pennsylvania27 and Maine28 were among those who called for making broadband access more of a priority.


What is Broadband? The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) defines broadband as reliable highspeed internet having download speeds of at least 25 megabits per second (Mbps) and upload speeds of at least 3 Mbps. It can be delivered via multiple technologies, including fiber, fixed wireless, digital subscriber line or cable. Some states have defined broadband in statute using different download and upload speeds or other parameters. Source: Federal Communications Commission. “2019 Broadband Deployment Report,” Accessed from: https://docs.fcc.gov/public/attachments/FCC19-44A1.pdf

This summer, Maine voters approved a ballot measure that called for borrowing $15 million to invest in high-speed Internet in communities that lack broadband or have limited connectivity. The bond money is being matched by up to $30 million in federal, state, private and local funds.29

Broadband is defined here as >25/3 Mbps in the form of ADSL, Cable, Fiber, Fixed Wireless or Satellite




NO PROVIDERS SUGGESTED STRATEGIES States may consider working with broadband providers to identify and address shortcomings and inequities in broadband coverage and reliability brought to light by the coronavirus pandemic.






OF RUR AL POPUL ATIONS investment.138 Increasing funding for public

Funding is still one of the biggest hurdles for most states. In South Carolina, where nearly 500,000 residents live without highspeed internet, it’s estimated that statewide connectivity could cost $800 million.32

Cyber Emergency Support Functions

School-based Health Centers Capital Program Grantees

cost of disasters than without prior mitigation






OF NON-TRIBAL POPUL ATIONS epidemics and prevent a variety of diseases from




OF TRIBAL POPUL ATIONS The unpredictable and reactionary nature of

health at the federal, state and local levels would support basic capabilities to reverse trending

Source: Health Resources and Services Administration, hrsa.gov

School-based health centers are a major component of the country’s health care safety net. These centers enable children with acute or chronic illnesses to attend school and improve the overall health and wellness of all children through health screenings, health promotion and disease prevention activities.

becoming widespread.

funding doesn’t allow for public health officials to provide comprehensive services nor does it allow for the steady construction of an overall robust health care infrastructure that would allow the health care workforce to both respond to crises and simultaneously improve general health outcomes, concluded a report from the Millbank Memorial Fund.139


Many states are expanding access to broadband through legislation. In 2011, Minnesota established a broadband task force which then led to the establishment of a broadband office within the state’s Department of Employment and Economic Development in 2013. Minnesota also started a grant program in 2014 that invested $85 million in expanding broadband access to over 40,000 sites.30 Even with this framework and plan in place, Minnesota faces challenges. An estimated 140,000 — or 16% — of rural households in the state still don’t have high-speed internet. That prompted Minnesota’s SECTION I Isenior I: CAPACITY, PREPAREDNESS AND RESILIENCY U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar to propose legislation this year that would invest $100 billion in broadband infrastructure in unserved and underserved communities around the country.31


Percentage of U.S. Population with Broadband Providers

The Affordable Care Act appropriated $200 million for 2010-2013 to support capital grants to improve and expand services at school-based health centers. $95 million was awarded to 278 school-based health centers in July 2011, enabling them to serve an additional 440,000 patients. These facilities currently serve approximately 790,000 patients.

There are roughly 2,000 school-based health centers operating across the country, approximately 70% of which receive state funding, but these health centers are not yet available in all states.140 Often a partnership between the school and a community health organization, the services at such centers vary based on community needs and resources. School-based health centers receive financial support from a wide variety of sources, including state government grants and reimbursement through Medicaid.141 In fact, at least 13 states allow for Medicaid reimbursement for services provided at these school-based centers.142 According to a School-Based Health Alliance survey, 18 states provided general funds and federal block grant dollars to these centers totaling $85 million in 2017. I The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security SEC TION I: WHAT’S NE X T ? LE VER AGING INNOVATION SUBCOMMIT TEE 23 Agency (CISA) put out a fact sheet demonstrating how misinformation and disinformation often comes from foreign actors who want to further divide and confuse Americans on a variety of states have issues and topics.161 at

needed to bring health care delivery into the future. The fifth-generation technology standard for cellular networks — better known as 5G — is expected to offer faster speeds, greater capacity and better reliability. In health care, those requirements are expected to allow for enabling things like the streaming of patient data, which could make reliable, real-time remote monitoring BARRIER TO ACCESS: 5G and mobile triage of patients possible.33 EXAMPLES IN ACTION Additionally, 5G is needed to enable augmented Broadband is not the only communications reality an applications, infrastructure technology that experts say is Virginiaand West hasvirtual undertaken education and allow for the fastmisinformation transfer of largeand data imaging files and campaign to combat disinformation.160


With those funds, the school-based health centers modernized or built new facilities, purchased needed equipment and increased access to health services for children.

RECOMMENDATION: States consider enacting small cell legislation that seeks to speed the installation of equipment to make possible fifth-generation wireless systems (5G) offering faster speeds, greater capacity and better reliability.


want it.


RECOMMENDATION: States consider prioritizing transitions to next generation technologies and ensuring access to broadband for all who

As is covered extensively in the What’s Next? Leveraging Innovation Subcommittee section, the pandemic reinforced the need for states to prioritize access to broadband and other wireless technologies to facilitate effective telehealth, telework and telelearning. These technologies are critical for many services provided during emergencies and are relied upon for for residents and first responders alike. When residents CSGcommunications HE ALTHY ALTHY SSTATES TATES NATIONAL NATIONAL TA TASK SK FORCE FORCE have access to essential technologies and the digital literacy skills to be able to utilize them, states can develop and better implement effective telelearning programs for schools and advise telework for businesses, as was done in most states during the pandemic. States are taking note of access and affordability issues to public Wi-Fi hotspots and private broadband services in rural and urban areas and are implementing broadband task forces, commissions or authorities. These groups coordinate broadband expansion by convening network operators and other stakeholders to explore cost effective broadband solutions that are affordable and make sense in each group’s region of the country — there has not yet been a one-size-fits-all solution to broadband access. In order to increase the populations served, states and internet service providers are leveraging a mix of investments and technologies, such as TV white spaces, fixed wireless and satellite coverage, to reduce both the initial capital and the ongoing operating costs of these networks.

Cyber Emergency Support Function (ESF) within the state Emergency Operations Center (EOC), dedicated to cybersecurity.

4 1

Consumer data privacy legislation:



Number of School-based Health Centers Capital Program Grantees per State

at least

at least









2 18 5



13 1 9

3 1





7 4

1 5


4 6


3 1







states have privacyrelated task forces


1 2


passed privacy laws








8 2 53


states have introduced privacy laws.

Source: National Governors Association. “State Cyber Disruption Response Plans,” July 2019. Accessed from: https:// www.nga.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/IssueBrief_MG.pdf




SPECIAL SECTION: EDUCATION IN THE COVID-19 ERA SECTION I I: SMART GOVERNMENT Learning Outside: Faced with the challenge of social distancing in crowded school buildings, some are pondering the particulars of teaching class outside. The National COVID-19 Outdoor Learning Initiative is a coalition of educators, architects, school administrators, landscape designers, curriculum experts and other stakeholders who are developing guidelines and resources for outdoor learning.

ONLINE LEARNING Effectiveness of Remote Instruction: In a July Education Week survey of school district leaders, principals and teachers, just 8% of educators said remote instruction provided by their district or school was “very effective.” Another 46% said it was “somewhat effective.” Twenty-six percent said it was “somewhat ineffective” and one fifth said it was “very ineffective.”16 Professional Development of Teachers: In the same survey, educators said they had received at least some professional development in areas critical to making remote instruction work, including posting digital materials and organizing group learning with video conference tools. But only 17% said they had received help with pacing lessons in a digital learning environment and less than half said they had received instruction on how to maintain socialemotional learning and connect with students virtually.17



Hybrid Models: On a CSG webinar in July 2020, Marni Baker Stein, provost and chief academic officer for the online university Western Governors University, expressed her concern about online/in-person hybrid education models. WGU consulted with other higher education institutions and with a number of large K-12 school districts during the pandemic. Stein said there has been a rush to get instruction up and running without an understanding of the resources needed to make hybrid models work.19 Digital Divide: Distance learning, or remote learning via the internet, became the fallback option after schools were forced to close. But the experience was frustrating for many. One of the reasons is America’s unequal internet access. Fourteen million African Americans and 17 million Hispanics don’t have access to computers in their homes. Thirty-five percent of Black households and 29% of Hispanic households don’t have broadband.20 It’s estimated that 15 million students and 400,000 teachers lack a reliable home internet connection.21 Students in California, many from low income families, need more than a million computers and hot spots, state officials told the Los Angeles Times.22 Urban-Rural Divide: More than 26% of rural residents lack access to fixed broadband, according to a 2017 FCC report. The number of Americans without access to broadband service at the FCC’s benchmark level of at least 25 megabits per second for downloads is estimated to be 19 million, the vast majority of whom live in rural areas. For urban and suburban dwellers, while broadband is available, it can be unaffordable for many, with monthly fees that can range from $50 to $100.23 According to a report from the Center for Reinventing Public Education, students in rural communities were far more likely to have access to fully in-person instruction in the fall of 2020 than suburban

The Digital Divide EXAMPLES IN ACTION:

Distance learning, or remote learning via the internet, became the fallback option after schools were forced to close. But the experience was frustrating for many. One of the reasons for this frustration was America’s unequal access to internet.

35% 29%



17 million HISPANICS

Nebraska focuses on college students by utilizing them as interns and works with universities to ensure students acquire realworld knowledge of IT work. Additionally, through LB 1160, the state adopted the Nebraska Statewide Workforce and Education Reporting System to promote economic development in the state through data-driven decisions on lifelong learning and workforce development issues.108 The law came out of a 2019 Economic Development Task Force report that identified four recommendations to address the gap between the availability of IT and STEM-related jobs and the skills acquired by workers needed to fill those jobs. Those recommendations are:



• Supporting a longitudinal data system to identify gaps in our education and training system, responding to those needs and building on strengths.


do not have broadband

do not have access to computers in their homes.


• Investing in apprenticeship programs aligned with high demand skills and industries. • Developing a career-education scholarship program for students pursuing careers in high demand, high skill, high wage jobs. • Retaining young Nebraskans with needed skill sets through student loan repayment initiatives.


& 400,000 STUDENTS


Online or In-Person: Davidson College and The Chronicle of Higher Education tracked the reopening plans of nearly 3,000 institutions for the fall semester and found that 6% planned to be online only, 27% primarily online, 15% a hybrid of online and in-person, 20% primarily in person, 2.5% solely in-person, 6% planned to do something else entirely and 24% still had not finalized their plans in late August.34 The California State University system and the state’s community college system both announced they would shut down campuses and go completely online for the fall. Others like Boston University and nearby Northeastern University planned to allow students to choose all-online or some classes in person. Stanford University said they would allow half of its students on campus each quarter. The SPECIAL SEC TION : EDUC ATION IN THE COVID -19 ER A 17 to send students home and go online after University of Michigan planned Thanksgiving.35


lack a reliable home internet connection

Examples in Action

In September 2020, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced that 625,000 essential workers in the state who reported for work during the height of the pandemic and who don’t have a degree are eligible for free college under a program called Futures for Frontliners. The program, inspired by the post-World War II G.I. Bill, is made possible with $24 million in federal CARES Act funds that went to the Governor’s Education Relief Fund. The program is open to not only those in medical fields but also those who worked in manufacturing, nursing homes, grocery stores, sanitation, delivery, retail and other sectors. Applicants are required to be Michigan residents, have worked in an essential industry and worked outside the home for 11 of the 13 weeks between April 1 and June 30, 2020, have not previously earned an associate or bachelor’s degree and who are not in default on a federal student loan.40

Davidson College and The Chronicle of Higher Education tracked the reopening plans of nearly 3,000 higher education institutions for the Fall 2020 semester. 2.5% solely in-person 6% online only 6% something else entirely 27% primarily online

24% plans not finalized by the end of August 2020

15% hybrid of online and in-person

20% primarily in person

Missouri developed a three-day training program for senior leaders, managers, supervisors and emerging leaders called The Missouri Way.109 The goal of the program is to accelerate professional growth while also ensuring these leaders have the skills and shared understanding to improve the productivity and morale of their departments. The program creates a network of leaders from all departments that together improve government performance for citizens.

Distance Education Fees: Some students at the University of North Texas in Denton found their fees increasing this fall as they were asked to pay “distance education fees” to support the management, delivery and technology for distance education courses. While not a new fee, the distance education fee is being applied more widely as the pandemic has necessitated more students going remote, university officials said.37 College Admissions: Admissions officials were left scrambling this year trying to figure out what student metrics they might consider since the pandemic left many applicants without standardized test scores or complete GPAs. Extracurricular activities couldn’t be counted on to differentiate candidates either. Some institutions allowed students to submit Advanced Placement (AP) test scores and writing samples to demonstrate what best represented them in the academic space. Other schools began to talk about how to identify characteristics that might have value in the academic setting, such as citizenship, social justice and tenacity.38

California and West Virginia are two states with comprehensive broadband implementation plans that states may consult 44


The Future: An August Global Learner Survey by the education publishing and assessment company Pearson found that 81% of surveyed learners in the U.S. believe that primary and secondary education will fundamentally change because of the pandemic. Eighty-three percent believe that higher education will fundamentally change, 74% said they expect more online learning in K-12 over the next 10 years and 82% said the same for higher education.39

Business Model: The core business model of college education began to shift as classes had to quickly move online. For most universities, online classes are being credited and billed in the same way as face-to-face delivery. In a March op-ed for The New York Times, college education innovation experts Richard Arum and Mitchell L. Stevens found that quickly moving classes to the internet prevented investment in “the pedagogical expertise that might have rendered online learning options complementary in practice and commensurate in quality to face-to-face instruction.”36





as they build their own. Through legislation, California created an environment for state agencies to collaboratively identify ways to improve broadband access to increase the chances of updated infrastructure. West Virginia allowed the formation of cooperatives to provide broadband service, created a loan guarantee program to reduce the fiscal risk to commercial lenders for their participation and allowed Internet Service Providers to use microtrenching to install infrastructure, an action that reduces barriers to wider broadband deployment.


RECOMMENDATION: States consider identifying best practices from successful smart city solutions and expanding them into state projects.


RECOMMENDATION: States consider improving cybersecurity by not only looking at the people handling the sensitive information, but at the devices storing that information as well.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has the potential to be used by state policymakers to quickly analyze and learn from both new and old data110 in order to make informed decisions. For example, in San Diego, California, smart streetlights assist law enforcement with public safety. Not only are the lights equipped with sensors that can detect unusual sounds — such as car crashes — and alert police, the streetlights also allow public safety officials to monitor intersections and take note of traffic changes and backups.111 All three features could be used to make better transportation policy decisions regarding safety and traffic flow. This is an example of smart enablement of technology that empowers public officials to make informed decisions on policies that will affect entire communities. AI and cloud computing can have direct impact on how states govern. For example, several states112 including Rhode Island and North Carolina relied on cloud technology during the coronavirus pandemic to help process

unprecedented unemployment claims as it allowed them to modify their systems and scale their website needs. Maryland113 hopes to streamline its workers’ compensation claims in a way that frees its workforce from processing paperwork so that their skills could be better utilized elsewhere. These examples showcase how a smart government can carefully implement new technologies to increase efficiency. Cybersecurity is also a big concern for states as they seek to protect their data and equip their workforces with the necessary tools to identify and mitigate potential security threats at a time when cyber-attacks on municipalities are rising, wreaking havoc on service delivery and generating high price tags.114 In Massachusetts, the state’s Cybersecurity Awareness Program grants provide training for 1,075 municipal and public school employees. North Carolina’s appropriation of $2 million during the COVID-19 pandemic strengthened security around unemployment insurance, and in North Dakota, the state boasts a central, shared service approach to cybersecurity strategy across all aspects of state government.

SUGGESTED STRATEGIES: When considering the implementation of these recommendations, states may utilize the following strategies: • Using AI to find areas of improvement in service delivery. • Using AI and cloud technology to reduce the need for manual labor. • Providing workers with free cybersecurity trainings. • Authorizing a central, shared service approach to state cybersecurity.

• Designating appropriate funding to strengthen cybersecurity. • Requiring manufactures of technological devices to equip them with reasonable security features.

EXAMPLES IN ACTION: In 2019, Oregon required manufacturers to equip connected devices with “reasonable security features” such as preprogrammed passwords and requirements to generate a new means of authentication before accessing the device. The features are meant to protect that device and the information it stores from access, destruction, modification, use or disclosure that user does not authorize.115


RECOMMENDATION 16: States consider promoting cultures of digital transformation to encourage the practice of datadriven decision making.


RECOMMENDATION 17: States consider creating data hubs that can share data across multiple entities/platforms to stop the issue of data silos.

By equipping an engaged and valued public workforce with smart technologies, state governments can attain streamlined processes to improve service delivery and decisionmaking. States must also work to create a culture of digital transformation that allows these ideals to grow. Small-scale examples of such a culture include Georgia and Maryland which, through the implementation of E-procurement, demonstrate how their governments value streamlining, workflow management, functionality and fiscal savings. 116




Savings from Remote Learning: There was an assumption among policymakers in some areas that all-remote learning might save millions of dollars this fall. The degree to which that was the case depended on a number of factors, notably district leadership, financial stability, readiness for remote learning and expected state budget cuts, Education Week reported. While some districts saved money by laying off bus drivers and other personnel, many also dealt with new costs for professional development, hiring online learning consultants and paying overtime to in-house experts on how to discipline students online, write effective lesson plans and use new technology. Other costs included those for gadgets and software, printing and paper for

lesson plans and homework assignments for students without access to Wi-Fi or devices and postage to make sure everybody had what they needed.18


Road to Success

CSG offers opportunities to turbocharge your public service impact Supporting state leaders in their commitment to public service is one of the key components of The Council of State Governments. CSG offers national and regional leadership development opportunities, as well as professional development avenues, to provide members with resources and networking opportunities. These opportunities help policy leaders develop and implement forward-thinking solutions, adapted for each state, to improve and strengthen communities. While leadership is an innate trait for many public servants, it is also a skill that must be continually practiced and honed. Elected and appointed state officials across the country can access many CSG training programs, offered virtually and in person. We are proud to partner with state leaders in their dedication to continual learning and collaboration.

Leadership Development Opportunities henry toll fellowship

| csg.org/tolls

Each year, the CSG Henry Toll Fellowship, named in honor of CSG founder Henry Wolcott Toll, brings together a group of rising state leaders to Lexington, Kentucky, for an intense week of leadership training. Participants are encouraged to both evaluate and adapt the way they interact with each other and the world around them — setting aside titles, politics and party lines. Designed to help state officials from all three branches take an introspective look at how they view themselves as public servants, colleagues and community members, the program provides a unique experience unlike any other in the nation. The Toll Fellowship is designed as a “graduate” level program complementing leadership development programs offered by CSG regional offices. It is suggested, but not required, that applicants first complete their respective regional program. Elected, appointed and merit officials may all apply. The list of Toll Fellow alumni is long and distinguished. Past Toll Fellows have achieved great success including serving as governors, secretaries of state, chief justices, speakers and U.S. Congress members. bowhay institute for legislative leadership development


CSG Midwest/Midwestern Legislative Conference csgmidwest.org/BILLD/default.aspx


Each summer, 37 lawmakers from the 11 member states of CSG Midwest and its affiliate members gather for a unique five-day educational experience — the Bowhay Institute for Legislative Leadership Development (BILLD). Named in honor of the first director of CSG Midwest, the late James Bowhay, the Bowhay Institute is the only leadership training designed exclusively for Midwestern legislators. BILLD helps newer legislators develop the skills necessary to become effective leaders, informed decision-makers and astute policy analysts. The BILLD program is conducted by CSG Midwest in cooperation with The Center for the Study of Politics and Governance at the University of Minnesota’s Humphrey School of Public Affairs.

center for the advancement of leadership skills

CSG South/Southern Legislative Conference slcatlanta.org/CALS The Center for the Advancement of Leadership Skills (CALS) seeks to create skilled, educated and confident state leaders by developing and enhancing core competencies that play a vital role in the service of public officials in both professional and personal arenas. CALS prepares emerging and mid-career legislative, executive and judicial branch state leaders for their roles in state government. Through activities and instruction focusing on the leadership program’s four central components — communication, conflict resolution, consensus building and critical decision-making — CALS scholars have an opportunity to reinforce and refine these crucial skills.

CSG East/Eastern Regional Conference csg-erc.org/leadership-academy Named for Pennsylvania state Sen. Robert J. Thompson — a beloved state and local government leader whose 30-year career was a model of personal and professional integrity, fairness, optimism and humility — the Robert J. Thompson Eastern Leadership Academy (ELA) annually brings together as many as 30 state and provincial officials from the 18 Eastern region member jurisdictions. This select group of state officials, from all three branches of state government, receives training from a

western legislative academy

CSG West csgwest.org/legislativeacademy/WesternLegislativeAcademy.aspx Each year, CSG West brings together a distinguished national faculty to offer the West’s premier training experience for Western state legislators in their first four years of service. The goals of the Western Legislative Academy (WLA) are to help newer legislators to become more effective and to build stronger state legislative institutions. To that end, a faculty of outstanding academics, corporate, military and public trainers work with a small class of lawmakers who come from each of the 13 Western states. Members of the academy are selected on the basis of their dedication to public service, desire to improve personal legislative effectiveness and commitment to the institution of the legislature. The WLA reinforces CSG West’s mission to provide opportunities for Western state legislators to share good ideas across state borders.


eastern leadership academy

variety of experts in media, education and government to enhance officials’ leadership and communication skills. Held in partnership with the Fels Institute of Government, ELA is a unique opportunity to learn with the best and the brightest from across the region. The ELA is designed for legislators, as well as legislative staff, executive branch and judicial branch officials, primarily in the early to middle stages of their government careers.


Awards and Recognitions the csg

0 under 0 leadership award | web.csg.org/0-

This national award recognizes the outstanding work of 20 up-and-coming elected and appointed officials from across the country who not only exemplify strong leadership skills but have also demonstrated a true commitment to serving the citizens of their state/ territory. Recipients demonstrate the ability to engage officials across party, departments, branch and/or state lines in meaningful ways to advance the common good for their state or territory, provide exceptional leadership to state projects, committees, chambers, commissions or special groups, and serve as a champion of change, seeking to enhance the lives of all constituents within important policy areas.

featured 0 nonpartisan public policy programming CSG University: Welcome to the Legislature (virtual)

Geared toward incoming freshman legislators February – March

CSG 2021 Forecast for Legislative Leaders (virtual) February – March

CSG 2022 Forecast for Legislative Leaders October

CSG Medicaid Leadership Academy

Policy Academies and Additional Programming


The CSG Policy Academy series provides customized training and a deeper dig on critical policy topics facing the states. Rather than exploring a topic for several hours only, a policy academy allows state leaders to unpack the complexities of an issue during a day-long or multi-day event. During the year, policy academies are typically invitation-only, serving members whose work is directly impacted by the issues at hand. Policy academies convened at the annual CSG National Conference, however, are open to all conference attendees, providing an outstanding opportunity for state leaders to broaden their knowledge of shared issues.


Sept. 29-Oct. 1 | Washington, D.C.

CSG Privacy & Cybersecurity Policy Academy Dec. 1-4, Santa Fe | New Mexico

CSG Sustainability Policy Academy Dec. 1-4 | Santa Fe, New Mexico

CSG State Medicaid Programs 101 Policy Academy Dec. 1-4 | Santa Fe, New Mexico

These programs may be invitation-only or geared toward a specific audience. To learn more, visit csg.org or email registration@csg.org.

David Biette Named New Director of CSG East Former deputy director selected to succeed Wendell Hannaford


ith the coming of the new year, The Council of State Governments celebrated a new beginning for one of its valued leaders. David Biette has been named as the new director of CSG East/Eastern Regional Conference.

Biette served the last three years as the deputy director of CSG East and will succeed long-time director Wendell Hannaford who retired at the end of 2020. “Wendell has left a great legacy for me to build on,” Biette said. “During my time as deputy director, Wendell was intent on my getting to know many of our members in the region and to know the important relationships he developed over his many years with CSG.” Under Biette’s leadership, CSG East will continue to engage state policymakers so they can learn from each other and from the various policy and training programs offered by the regions and national office, he said. “The relationships that we have nurtured over the years are important to CSG. We’ve been a great resource for our members, who are making sure that we can continue those professional relationships in whatever way they can. Our partnerships are important, and will help carry us through 2021, which will likely be as challenging as 2020, if not more so.”

“We congratulate David on this achievement and look forward to continuing to work closely with him,” said CSG Executive Director/CEO David Adkins. “David’s success is our success, and we look forward to supporting him in the months and years ahead. While we will miss Wendell, David has the benefit of building on Wendell’s legacy of success.” Biette is the author of numerous chapters, policy briefs and op-eds and has appeared regularly in the U.S., Canadian and international media. He earned a Master of Arts in international relations from The Johns Hopkins University in Washington, D.C., and a Bachelor of Arts with honors — majoring in both government and Romance languages/French — from Bowdoin College in Maine.


Before joining CSG in May 2017, Biette served as executive director of the Association for Canadian Studies in the United States and as a political, economic and public affairs officer at the Consulate General of Canada in New York City, where he was responsible for relations with the states of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut on a variety of issues including political, energy and environmental affairs. He was also the director of the Canada Institute at the Wilson Center.


CT / DE / MA / MD / ME / NH / NJ / NY / PA / RI / VT / NB / NS / ON / PE / PR / QC / VI

More Vaccines

New York Announces More Than $17 Million for High-Impact Clean Energy Actions New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced $17 million in funding and expanded high-impact actions under the state’s Clean Energy Communities program to help drive stronger community leadership to reduce carbon emissions, expand assistance for disadvantaged areas and foster further investments in the growing clean energy economy. The program’s new Leadership Round increases the options a community can choose from to lower its carbon footprint, recognizes its leadership through a point rewards system and provides access to additional grant opportunities for actions taken. Cuomo aims to direct 40% of the benefits from clean energy investments into disadvantaged communities.


Currently, more than 300 local governments in New York have earned the Clean Energy Community designation. Since the program launched in 2016, more than 600 communities, representing more than 91% of the state’s population, in 61 counties have completed 1,700 high-impact actions through the program.


Four high-impact clean energy actions must be completed to earn a Clean Energy Communities designation. This new program round builds on the previous round with new opportunities for communities to save energy and reduce costs. This includes adopting Community Campaigns for qualifying clean energy initiatives such as electric vehicles, community solar, clean heating and cooling, energy efficiency or demand response, among others. Those participating in a Community Campaign must identify partners, volunteers, local officials and formal roles and responsibilities needed to achieve a clean energy initiative.

For more on CSG East, visit csg-erc.org. 212.482.2320 • info@csg-erc.org

Vaccines are available to more Connecticut residents. Gov. Ned Lamont announced in January that, as Phase 1B of the state’s COVID-19 vaccination plan, residents over the age of 75 can make an appointment to receive the vaccine. In addition to residents 75 years of age and older, this phase of the vaccine rollout includes residents and staff of congregate settings and frontline essential workers. The state estimates this portion of the plan covers approximately 1.3 million Connecticut residents. The state expects to receive 46,000 of the first dose each week from the federal government. Since December 2020, more than 160,000 individuals have received the vaccine in Connecticut. Nationally, the state is fifth in terms of percent of the population that have been vaccinated.

Accommodating Students New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy signed off on new policies for the 2020-21 school year. The changes include a waiver of the graduation assessment test required for seniors who have satisfied all other statutory graduation requirements. The policy removes the Student Growth Objectives as part of formal educator evaluations and it allows for more time for those who are or will be certified teachers to serve as substitute teachers. Executive Order 214 will help districts manage vacancies by allowing those in the process of being certified to fill teaching vacancies for a maximum of 60 school days and allows fully certified teachers who are substitutes in areas outside of their credentials to fill vacancies for a maximum of 60 days.

Unemployment Legislation Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker and Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito refiled unemployment insurance legislation in January that was originally filed in December 2020. The legislation strives to sustain unemployment benefits and provide an estimated 1.3 billion in unemployment insurance relief to employers over the next two years. The legislation includes three components: short term employer tax relief through a two-year tax schedule freeze; authorization for the issuance of special obligation bonds for the purposes of repaying federal advances; and an employer surcharge on

contributory employers. This legislation would include measures to ensure that federal borrowing is repaid in a responsible and affordable manner.

Affordable Housing Pennsylvania has received more than $1 million in funding through the HOME Investment Partnerships Program to support affordable housing in Centre County. Through this program, $945,000 will be distributed to State College Borough. This money will acquire and transform eight three-bedroom townhomes on one parcel. The State College Community Land Trust will own the land and the Temporary Housing Foundation will operate the improvements and manage the units. Three of the units will be rented to those at less than 50% of the median area income and five units will be occupied by those at less than 80% of the median income of the area.

Youth Hockey Remains Suspended in Eastern States Together, the governors of New Jersey, Maine, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Vermont, Connecticut and Massachusetts have extended the temporary ban on interstate youth hockey competitions for both public and private schools. The suspension originally was set to expire in December 2020 but will continue until the end of January 2021. The suspension does not impact national hockey teams, although they must follow safety protocols. The suspension is due to the related coronavirus outbreaks involving youth hockey activities.

IA / IL / IN / KS / MI / MN / ND / NE / OH / SD / WI / AB / MB / ON / SK

Student Athletes Michigan and Nebraska are among the first states in the nation with laws that allow collegiate athletes to use their own names, images, likenesses and reputations for financial compensation. Michigan’s HB 5217 and 5218 were signed in December and take effect in 2023. The bipartisan measures were sponsored by two former college athletes: Reps. Brandt Iden and Joe Tate. In late 2019, the NCAA’s governing board voted to allow student-athletes to earn compensation from the use of their names, images and likenesses. Under HB 5217 and 5218, Michigan’s post-secondary institutions are barred from denying eligibility or scholarships based on an athlete pursuing certain financial opportunities. The bills also allow agents to enter into contracts with student-athletes. Nebraska’s LB 962 was signed into law in July and becomes effective on July 1, 2023.

Computer Science Education By fall of 2022, every high school in Iowa will be required to offer instruction in computer science, and the state is making plans now to have its teacher workforce ready and a strong curriculum in place. Legislators approved HF 2629 in 2020, a bill that created the new instructional requirements and established a Computer Science Work Group. This group began meeting early this year to develop recommendations on how to teach computer science and promote this subject area among K-12 students and families. Under Iowa’s HF 2629, high schools must offer at least one computer science course by July 1, 2022. One year later, Iowa’s elementary and middle schools must begin providing instruction in at least one grade level.

Remote Session

Combatting Asian Carp As part of a spending bill approved in December, the U.S. Congress authorized an $858 million project to add a new electric barrier and other fish-control technologies at Brandon Road Lock and Dam near Joliet, Illinois. The goal: keep Asian carp and other invasive species from reaching the Great Lakes via the Chicago Area Waterway System. The new barrier and controls at Brandon Road are a project of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Such projects typically require a non-federal sponsor that pays for 35% of the costs, but Great Lakes advocates and congressional supporters were able to boost the federal share of Brandon Road’s costs to 80%. Illinois has signed an agreement with the Army Corps to be the project’s nonfederal sponsor for the pre-construction engineering and design phase. Michigan has committed $8 million for this phase of the project. Illinois will contribute the remaining $2.5 million that is needed. The two states entered into an intergovernmental agreement in late December.

Postpartum Medicaid Coverage A new Kaiser Family Foundation report recommends that states seeking to reduce maternal mortality should expand their Medicaid programs’ postpartum coverage from the federally mandated 60 days to a full year from the date of birth. Medicaid pays for prenatal care, childbirth and delivery services. States that adopted Medicaid expansion must also cover certain services recommended by the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force. Illinois and Indiana are seeking federal waivers to expand coverage from 60 days to one year. Illinois’ plan, submitted in January 2020, would extend coverage to reduce maternal deaths and better address social determinants of health, as well as improve the health of babies covered by the Children’s Health Insurance Program. Indiana wants to expand coverage for mothers who are living at or below 213% of the federal poverty level and who are suffering from opioid use disorders. Michigan’s 2021 budget includes $12.6 million for the Healthy Moms, Healthy Babies initiative, which expands coverage to a full year.

U.S. Population Growth Slowed in the Past Decade, More Pronounced in Midwest In a decade of historically low population growth nationwide, most states in the Midwest had even smaller increases, with one experiencing a net decline in residents between 2010 and 2020, according to U.S. Census Bureau estimates released in late 2020. Only North Dakota and South Dakota outpaced the U.S. growth rate; a third state in the upper Midwest, Minnesota, has had a population increase on par with the rest of the United States. Conversely, the latest estimates show Illinois as one of six U.S. states losing people between 2010 and 2020. Three factors cause changes in a state’s population: 1) the number of births vs. the number of deaths; 2) domestic migration (movement between states); and 3) international migration. On that first factor, there has been a natural increase in population of every Midwestern state, though one notable recent trend across the nation has been a smaller and smaller birth-to-death ratio. Patterns in domestic migration are caused by factors such as quality of life and economic opportunity. For example, much of North Dakota’s decennial increase occurred in the first part of the decade, during an oil boom in the western part of that state. Before the last decade, the lowest rate of decennial population growth in U.S. history was 7.3% and occurred in the 1930s, according to demographer William Frey, a senior fellow in the Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program. The new U.S. Census Bureau estimates show last decade’s increase as being below 7%.

For more on CSG Midwest, visit csgmidwest.org. 630.925.1922 • csgm@csg.org


Session began for the Minnesota House of Representatives in early January with some members in the chamber, but most taking their oaths of office through Zoom, according to the online House publication Session Daily. For the entirety of the 2021 session, too, House leaders had procedures in place to allow for online legislating, including plans for all committee meetings to be held remotely. The Minnesota Senate is employing a mix of in-person and online meetings. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, most states did not have specific laws spelling out when and how legislatures could meet

remotely. States such as Minnesota have instead used changes in legislative rules.


AL / AR / FL / GA / KY / LA / MO / MS / NC / OK / SC / TN / TX / VA / WV

Budget Earmarks

Behavioral Health Training for Rural Providers A program called Pediatric Access to Telehealth Services (PATHS) helps Alabama physicians who are facing a shortage of qualified pediatric mental heath providers in rural parts of the states. Since its inception, PATHS has aided rural primary care providers in diagnosing, treating and managing mild to moderate behavioral health conditions in children and adolescents. The program is a partnership between the Alabama Department of Mental Health and Children’s of Alabama, a pediatric medical center.


The program revolves around three components. First, physicians, nurses and other providers can access a series of online training sessions with behavioral health experts to gain specialized knowledge, as well as discuss relevant behavioral health cases they have faced or are currently facing. The second component allows enrollees’ patients to call a dedicated line at Children’s of Alabama for one-to-one teleconferences with behavioral health professionals during non-crisis situations. Finally, participating physicians have the opportunity to access consultations with experts after they have implemented treatment recommendations for patients.


The PATHS program addresses the unmet need to provide more accessible behavioral healthcare for children in Alabama, particularly those living below the poverty line and in rural areas. More than one in five children living below the poverty level have a mental, behavioral or developmental disorder, and rural areas often lack specialized behavioral health experts. According to the CDC, almost 10% of children ages two to 17 were diagnosed with ADHD, totaling about 6.6 million nationally. Another 4.5 million have a diagnosed behavioral health problem, along with millions more suffering from anxiety and depression. For more on CSG South, visit slcatlanta.org. 404.633.1866

The South Carolina Senate approved a rule change that will increase transparency of earmarks during the state’s budget process. Under the new rules, information about earmarks must be available upon request, including who made the request, how much was requested and an explanation of the project before the budget is adopted. The change comes after a previous report found that more than $40 million in spending was approved in 2019 on earmarks without public knowledge, including $2 million for tennis courts, $500,000 for a nature trail and $300,000 for a golf and swimming club. Prior to the rule change, Governor Henry McMaster called for an end to the practice of undisclosed earmarks.

COVID-19 Vaccine Success West Virginia outpaced the rest of the country in administering COVID-19 vaccines to its residents during the first few weeks of the vaccination campaign, with at least 7.4% of the state’s population receiving the first shot as of the middle of January, compared to the national average of 3.7%. The state was the first in the nation to finish offering first doses to all long-term care centers before the end of December, with second doses administered by the end of January. The success has been attributed to the state’s decision to enlist local pharmacists, rather than national chains, to set up clinics in rural communities to administer the vaccines.

Law Enforcement Training Effective January 1, a new law in Missouri requires all law enforcement officers to annually complete two separate onehour training sessions covering de-escalation techniques and how to recognize implicit bias. The law was approved in October by the Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Commission, a government body established by state statute that is responsible for the curriculum of basic and continuing education of law enforcement officers. The new curriculum will be part of each officer’s existing 24 hours of annual training.

Pharmacy Benefit Manager Regulations The U.S. Supreme Court unanimously ruled in favor of an Arkansas law regulating the practices of pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs), which act as intermediaries between pharmacists and insurers. Act 900 passed in 2015 following complaints from pharmacists that PBM reimbursement rates were too low, often below the pharmacists’ cost of procuring prescription medicines. The Arkansas law required PBMs to increase reimbursements for generic drugs if they are below wholesale costs and created an appeals process for pharmacies to challenge reimbursement rates. The Supreme Court ruling potentially could allow other states to enact similar regulations on PBMs.

Air Force Space Command HQ The U.S. Air Force selected the Army’s Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Alabama, as the preferred location for the headquarters of its new Space Command, Governor Kay Ivey announced. Upon relocating from its current Colorado Springs headquarters in six years, the Space Command is expected to bring approximately 1,600 new jobs to the Huntsville area as its missions continue growing. The Space Command was established in 2019, and a search for a new base began the following year, with 24 states submitting competing bids. The decision to relocate to Huntsville will not be final until an environmental impact study is complete, which is expected in spring 2023.

AK / AZ / CA / CO / HI / ID / MT / NM / NV / OR / UT / WA / WY / AB / AS / BC / CNMI / GU

Aquaculture Grant

Prioritizing Cybersecurity

Oregon State University received a nearly $700,000 grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to provide software tools for investors interested in starting aquaculture businesses in Oregon. Researchers from several Oregon State entities, including the College of Agricultural Sciences, Oregon Sea Grant, the College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences, and the Institute for Natural Resources, will work closely with Oregon Aquaculture Association on this three-year grant. The funding will also support new partnerships with state agencies.

During the Utah legislative session, legislators have filed a series of bills seeking to bolster data privacy and create a statewide privacy officer to help protect people’s personal information, as well as to criminalize catfishing efforts. House Bill 80 creates an affirmative defense for companies in lawsuits over data breaches if the company can prove that they maintain up-to-date data security. House Bill 239 escalates the criminal penalty of individuals who impersonate others for the purposes of perpetuating a fraud or harassing someone else. Additional bills regulate the state’s use of facial recognition technology and prohibit law enforcement from performing reverse keyword searches without a warrant.

Boosting Local Economy In New Mexico, legislators are introducing a bill to drive more government contracting dollars to local businesses and help boost the state’s economy. Senate Bill 53 would allow state agencies and local governments to award contracts for goods and services only to in-state companies. For example, a local municipality may be looking for a company to complete projects like cleaning services, construction, or road work. Under this bill, they would be allowed to open up bidding to New-Mexico owned companies only. The New Mexico General Services Department said the state spends more than $5 billion a year on goods and services, which this bill wants to see in contracts with New Mexico businesses.

COVID-19 Response Education Grants

The Montana House Judiciary committee held a hearing in late January on a bill that seeks to protect free speech on public university campuses in the state. Rep. Mike Hopkins introduced the bill, which would require universities to pay between $2,000 and $75,000 in damages to students or groups whose free speech rights are violated. If the measure is signed into law, Montana would join at least 17 other states with similar measures protecting free speech on campuses.

California state lawmakers passed an emergency measure to deliver billions of dollars — some from federal stimulus funds — in rental assistance and extend an eviction moratorium through June, according to “The Mercury News.” The passage of SB 91 clears the way for the distribution of $2.6 billion to landlords and utilities to settle at least some of the unpaid bills of low- and moderate-income Californians impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. The budget bill measure came days before the expiration of a statewide moratorium on evictions. Gov. Gavin Newsom is expected to sign the measure. The state expects to begin distributing aid in March. These federal funds are aimed at renter families making less than 80% of the area median income, with priority given to those making less than half the median income. Under the new state measure, landlords can receive 80% of back rent due between April 2020 and March 2021. Landlords must agree to waive the remaining 20% of the debt and not seek eviction. Landlords refusing to waive their right to evict may collect 25% of back rent. Tenants will be eligible for protection through June 30 by meeting several requirements; they must declare they have lost income from the pandemic and pay at least one-quarter of the back rent owed between September and June. Tenants may also be eligible for partial assistance of up to three months future rent. Landlords are required to notify tenants about rental assistance programs.

For more on CSG West, visit csgwest.org. 916.553.4423 • csgw@csg.org


Colorado Gov. Jared Polis announced the second round of Response, Innovation, and Student Equity (RISE) Fund awardees to “innovate and transform public education.” This follows the first round of RISE grantees from November 2020 after the September 2020 announcement of the RISE fund, which supports innovation in high-need school districts, charter schools and public colleges and universities to address the learning challenges related to the economic, social and health impacts of COVID-19. These grants are award to create sustainable innovations to improve student learning, close equity gaps and enhance operational efficiency for grades K-12. These most recent grants bring the total awards to over $40 million.

Campus Free Speech

California Approves Rent Relief, Eviction Protection


Final Facts

For the Birds

Everyone knows the bald eagle is a prominent federal symbol for our country, but how much do you know about the winged friends that represent the states? Grab a pair of field glasses and check out these feathery facts. You can hear your state bird’s call by visiting the National Audubon Society at audubon.org.

WILLOW PTARMIGAN, or willow grouse,

change from light brown in the summer to snow white in the winter to match Alaska’s changing landscape.

Despite its name,

T HE CALIFORN I A GU LL IS ACTUALLY T HE STATE BIRD O F U TA H. Believed by many to have miraculously saved early pioneers from swarms of crickets looking to feast on crops, a monument to the bird was place in Salt Lake City.

P E N N S Y L VA N I A ’ S

Ruffed Grouse

creates a unique drumming sound with its wings to attract potential mates. The drumming can be heard for at least a quarter mile radius.

The cardinal has the distinction of representing

7 different states.

Illinois Indiana Kentucky North Carolina Ohio Virginia West Virginia

The HERMIT THRUSH of Vermont has been immortalized in the poems of Amy Clampitt, Walt Whitman and T.S. Elliot.

Delaware and Rhode Island weren’t afraid to make their state birds a




— the Delaware Blue Hen and the Rhode Island Red.

THE CACTUS WREN — state bird of Arizona — is so named for its nesting and roosting behavior in desert cacti plants such as the cholla and saguaro.

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Capitol Ideas | Issue 1 | 2021| The State-Federal Relationship