Stranger than fiction: Book bike pedals more library use

By   /  May 15, 2015  /  Legislature, Lobbying, Minnesota, News, State Budgets, State Government  /  No Comments

Rochester Public Library Photo

They call it a little library on wheels. Not a bookmobile, but a book bike — the latest twist in the plot to drive more traffic to flagging Minnesota libraries.

The state’s first book bike just rolled out from the Rochester Public Library, and $7,000 in taxpayer-provided grants from the Legacy Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund and regional library system paved the way.

But libraries hoping to follow in Rochester’s tracks may need to get in gear. Legislators are negotiating a cut in regional libraries’ $3 million annual Legacy Fund appropriation.

Read More →

YMMV: Texas text banning bill moves forward

By   /  May 13, 2015  /  Legislature, News, Texas  /  No Comments

Texting while driving

By Steve Miller |
She was driving south down Greenville in Dallas just past I-635 in a black BMW Z4. Left hand lane, barely moving, slowing up traffic. The middle-aged woman was texting.
Because she could.
It was, in the words of Gov. Greg Abbott, “adult driving behavior.”
Texas is one of four states that allows texting while […]

Read More →

Poor marks for MN teacher board lead to state investigation

By   /  May 13, 2015  /  Education, Government Regulation, Legislature, Minnesota, State Government, Uncategorized  /  No Comments

Copyright MN Hse of Rep. Photo by Paul Battaglia.

It’s responsible for ensuring public schools get quality teachers, yet the Minnesota Board of Teaching is getting progressively poorer marks from administrators, legislators, teachers and education advocates.

The board now faces its toughest exam — a 10-month investigation by the Office of the Legislative Auditor — the equivalent of going to the principal’s office.

Read More →

Down-ticket races in Mississippi important to taxpayers

By   /  May 8, 2015  /  Budget and Spending, Government Regulation, Legislature, Mississippi, News, Politics  /  No Comments

UNDER SCRUTINY: WinVote touch-screen voting machines, used by roughly one in five Virginia voters, could be scrapped by the state Board of Elections on Tuesday.

Two down ticket races in Mississippi — state treasurer and three seats on the Mississippi Public Service Commission — could have huge consequences for taxpayers.

Read More →

Measure eliminating pot prohibition inches forward in Texas

By   /  May 7, 2015  /  Government Regulation, Legislature, News, Politics, State Government, Texas  /  No Comments


To the surprise of many, a legislative committee this week approved a bill that would make marijuana legal. The 5-2 vote in the Texas House Criminal Jurisprudence Committee moves House Bill 2165 forward with little chance of going anywhere, of course.

Texas is no Colorado, after all.

Read More →

Legislation giving PA taxpayers insight into cost of union contracts on the move

By   /  May 7, 2015  /  General, Governor, Legislature, PA Independent, Pennsylvania  /  No Comments

By Andrew Staub | PA Independent
HARRISBURG, Pa. — Two pieces of legislation that cleared the state Senate on Wednesday would give taxpayers a better look at public-sector union contract negotiations, but Democrats and union leaders have decried the effort as an attempt to undermine organized labor.
One bill would require that the Independent Fiscal Office analyze the […]

Read More →