June 26, 2020

Regulatory News Roundup

GL Solutions’ weekly newsletter features a brief roundup of notable regulatory news and information from around the country:
Local, state government shed 1.5 million jobs: State and local governments have shed about 1.5 million jobs since March as projected budget shortfalls have mounted, according to reporting by The Pew Charitable Trusts. For the most part, however, the job losses have been temporary and consist of temporary layoffs and furloughs. Still, state and local government employment has fallen to its lowest level since 2001.

Michigan residential center loses license after teen death: A Kalamazoo, Mich., facility for teens with behavioral problems has lost its contract with the state and its license to operate following the death of a 16-year-old resident. According to a Michigan ABC News affiliate, Cornelius Frederick lost consciousness while restrained by staff at the Lakeside Academy April 29. He went into cardiac arrest and died at the hospital May 1.

Minnesota may boost clout of police licensing board: Lawmakers in Minnesota are considering a bill that would require the state board that licenses police officers and establishes training standards to play a more significant disciplinary role, FOX 9 news in Minneapolis reports. The legislation would require the Peace Officer Standards and Training Board to revoke the licenses of officers who violate use-of-force policies. Currently, the board cannot launch independent investigations of an officer’s conduct and doesn’t have its own investigators.

LA ‘social equity’ cannabis-sales program under scrutiny: A Los Angeles “social equity” program that seeks to ensure that licenses to sell marijuana go to people from communities harmed most by the war on drugs is under scrutiny, the Los Angeles Times reports. The controversy involves a business that has become one of the program’s biggest winners by partnering with black entrepreneurs to obtain cannabis licenses. According to the Times, at least one of the company’s partnership contracts allows a subsidiary to buy out “social equity” partners if they refuse direction from the company.

Emergency licensure order helps Nevada teachers: Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak signed an emergency order June 22 to help teachers who are experiencing license-expiration problems attributable to the coronavirus pandemic, FOX5 in Las Vegas reports. The order would allow the state superintendent of public instruction to extend expiring licenses for up to 12 months.

Washington governor cancels raises, imposes furloughs: Washington Gov. Jay Inslee announced June 17 that he would cancel raises for more than 5,500 state workers and impose unpaid furlough days in response to a coronavirus-related budget shortfall, the Seattle Times reports. The canceled wage increases affect the state’s nonunion employees, and the furloughs – one unpaid day per week through July 25, and one day per month after that – affect more than 40,000 state employees.

Rules relaxed for South Dakota gaming machines: At the request of the Deadwood Gaming Association, the South Dakota Commission on Gaming has relaxed rules for gaming machines on casino floors, KOTA TV in Deadwood reports. Normally, any device with a lapsed license must be removed and put into storage. The relaxed rule allows casinos to leave unlicensed machines on the floor. Casinos are expected to relicense them as revenue rebounds.

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