US states

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America's Most Stressed States Are...

Unemployment helps put Florida top

(Newser) - Florida is the most stressed-out state in the lower 48 and that has nothing to do with pythons , shark attacks , or drug-dealing mayors , according to a new study. Real-estate blog Movoto used factors including commuting times, housing prices, and lack of health insurance to arrive at its findings. It ranked... More »

Why States Are Worried About Your Face Wash

Plastic 'microbeads' prompt environmental concern

(Newser) - Your face wash may be bad for the environment, and several states are trying to do something about it. The problem is "microbeads," minuscule pieces of plastic about the size of Abe Lincoln's eye on a penny, Time reports. They're found in all kinds of products... More »

So Far, 23 States Agree to Build Insurance Exchanges

12 are undecided; feds will build them in the rest

(Newser) - One huge tangible of President Obama's victory: With ObamaCare moving forward, states must decide in a month how they'll go about setting up health insurance exchanges where the uninsured can get coverage in 2014. The original deadline was yesterday (it got extended this week), and the AP takes... More »

How Google Reveals State Stereotypes

It's all about the autocomplete feature

(Newser) - Ever wondered what people really think of your state? Google can tell you: Just type in, "Why is (state name here) so..." and let autocomplete fill in the rest; that'll show you what others have been searching. Blogger Renee DiResta tried it for all 50 states, and... More »

Guess Which State Americans Hate Most?

If you said 'California,' pat yourself on the back

(Newser) - Americans are generally pretty positive, or at least indifferent, about these United States. Public Policy Polling asked 1,200 people how they felt about each of the 50 states, and only five were viewed more unfavorably than favorably. America's favorite state, by an overwhelming margin was Hawaii, while its... More »

States, Cities Gutted Spending in 2011

Medicaid, state jobs, infrastructure hit

(Newser) - The final three months of 2011 saw states, cities, and school districts making their biggest spending cuts in a decade, USA Today reports. Spending dropped 1.6% from the same period the year before, plummeting by $26 billion. The result: States are seeing their smallest shortfalls in years, and in... More »

North Dakota May Not Be a State

Local historian trying to get constitutional 'oops' fixed

(Newser) - North Dakota has been a state since 1889—or has it? An 82-year-old government watchdog and local historian has been trying, for 16 years, to get someone to notice an important flaw in the state's constitution that he says renders North Dakota's very statehood invalid. The state constitution... More »

Video Pokes at 50 State Stereotypes

...in a succinct 2:03

(Newser) - Every one of the 50 states will no doubt be teeming with barbecues, parades, and fireworks today. But that shared love of corn on the cob isn't the only thing the 50 states have in common. Each lays claim to a specific stereotype. Like, for instance, Indiana: "You... More »

And the Least-Stressed US State Is...

Hawaii, Wyoming top list

(Newser) - America is about as stressed as it was last year, a recent poll finds: Some 39.4% of 352,840 respondents called themselves stressed “a lot of the day,” compared to 39.9% last year. The year before was just a little more relaxed, with 38.8% saying... More »

Ten States Losing Smart People

Utah, Texas, Iowa make the list

(Newser) - Some states are not keeping up with the others in regard to education. Declining math and reading scores, lower numbers of people with post-secondary degrees, and loss of white-collar workers all imply a decrease in "smart people" compared to the rest of the country. A look at the states... More »

Top 10 States in Deepest Debt

The worst-off are not who you might suspect

(Newser) - Forty-four states will likely come up short of their budgets in 2012, a development that has lawmakers considering a special bankruptcy provision for states. But which are deepest in the hole? The Daily Beast crunched the numbers, factoring in not just debt but unfunded pension and health care obligations. Here's... More »

Cantor: No Bailouts, Bankruptcy for States

States already have tools to fix budget woes, majority leader says

(Newser) - Lawmakers from both sides of the aisle are in favor of changing the rules to allow cash-strapped states to seek bankruptcy protection , but House Majority Leader Eric Cantor is pooh-poohing the idea. Cantor says states already have the power to balance their books through cutting spending, raising taxes, or renegotiating... More »

Way Out for Struggling States: Bankruptcy?

Idea kept under wraps over market fears

(Newser) - As cash-strapped states scrabble to fix budgets and pay public workers’ pensions, some lawmakers are pointing to bankruptcy as a solution, the New York Times reports. States can't go that route currently because they're technically sovereign entities, but backers say it's a better alternative to what the Times terms "... More »

States That Gained or Lost House Seats in Census

Texas is big winner (4), while New York and Ohio lose 2 each

(Newser) - Here's a look at the states that will either gain or lose seats in the House based on the new Census results , from the Wall Street Journal :
  • Gainers: Texas, 4; Florida, 2; and six states with 1: Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, South Carolina, Utah, and Washington.
  • Losers: New York and Ohio
... More »

How the States Rank on the Environment

Vermont, Maine, and Hawaii lead the way

(Newser) - Which states are the most environmentally friendly? 24/7 WallSt analyzes pollution levels, energy use, and environmental policies to rank them from 1 to 50:
  1. Vermont: Among its many "green" attributes, Vermont has the smallest carbon footprint in the country. It also releases the fewest carcinogenic toxins.
More »

Let States Lead on Health Care

Federal meddling will only lead to higher prices and crappy care

(Newser) - The states have a handle on health care reform, write Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry, and the federal government urgently needs to take a lesson from them. “Texas, for example, has adopted approaches to controlling health-care costs while improving choice, advancing quality of care and expanding coverage” write the... More »

If Swine Flu Is a Test, America Is Failing

States' herky-jerky responses show problems with system

(Newser) - Take a good look at how states are dispensing swine flu shots—if they're dispensing them at all yet—and there's no escaping one conclusion: What a mess. Despite federal guidelines, each state seems to have its own ideas on who should get them first, and when—yet another example... More »

Jobless Rates Jump in 26 States

16 states' unemployment at least 10%

(Newser) - Jobless rates climbed in 26 states last month, suggesting employment recovery will be slow and governors may face worsening budget woes, Bloomberg reports. Unemployment in California, Georgia, Rhode Island, and Nevada was at its highest since record-keeping started in 1976. While California’s rate rose from 11.6% to 11.... More »

US Aid Rules Perplex Needy in Downturn

(Newser) - Hobbled by the recession, millions of Americans are struggling to navigate benefit programs that dispense aid in often arbitrary and frustrating ways, the New York Times reports. In many cases, it's all about geography. Need food stamps? It's better to live in Missouri than California. Unemployment? The lucky live in... More »

Governors Back House on Stimulus

Senate version provides for half as much direct state aid

(Newser) - With the House and Senate reconciling their competing stimulus bills, governors are pushing for the House version to prevail, the Washington Post reports. States would receive billions in aid if that version goes through—or next to nothing if the Senate's legislation passes. "If the Senate version holds, there... More »

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