Pluribus AM: AI bills on the brink

Good morning, it’s Wednesday, May 8, 2024. In today’s edition, AI bills die in Conn., still alive in Colo.; Minnesota Gov signs Taylor Swift ticketing bill; Louisiana reforms insurance laws:

Top Stories

ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE: Comprehensive AI legislation in Connecticut died late Tuesday in the face of a veto threat from Gov. Ned Lamont (D). A similar version in Colorado cleared second reading in the state House, putting it just a step away from Gov. Jared Polis’s (D) desk. (Pluribus News)

Both Connecticut and Colorado are slated to finish their legislative sessions today.

CONSUMER PROTECTION: Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz (D) has signed legislation cracking down on speculative sales of concert tickets. The law requires resellers to tell buyers where their seats would be, and it requires a venue’s permission before secondary sales begin. (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

The bill is House File 1989 — a reference to Taylor Swift’s year of birth.

MORE: Louisiana Gov. Jeff Landry (R) has signed bills making it easier for insurance companies to drop policyholders, raise rates and take more time to pay claims after a storm. The bills are meant to attract more insurance companies to the state. (Baton Rouge Advocate)

EMPLOYMENT: The Connecticut Senate voted to expand the state’s paid leave program that offers employees a mandatory 40 hours of paid time off to small businesses. The bill, on its way to Lamont’s desk, would apply to companies with 25 or more employees by 2025, and to all companies by 2027. (CT Mirror)

MORE: The Alabama Senate has given final approval to a bill that will provide tax credits to companies that help their employees afford childcare. The bill also gives tax credits and grants to providers to incentivize new spaces to open. (Associated Press)

EDUCATION: Missouri Gov. Mike Parson (R) has signed legislation requiring voter approval if large school districts want to shift to four-day school weeks. The law raises minimum teacher pay from $25,000 to $40,000 a year, and it expands a scholarship program for students who want to attend private or charter schools. (Kansas City Star)

HOUSING: The Missouri Senate has approved legislation barring local governments from placing moratoriums on eviction proceedings. The bill also increases penalties for squatting, and it limits a local government’s authority to require property inspections before residential home sales. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

GUN POLITICS: Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves (R) has signed legislation banning the manufacture, sale or possession of machine gun conversion devices known as “Glock switches.” Anyone in possession of such a device would be subject to up to 10 years in prison. (Supertalk)

In Politics & Business

INDIANA: State Republicans chose U.S. Sen. Mike Braun (R) as their nominee to replace term-limited Gov. Eric Holcomb (R). Braun captured 40% of the primary vote, nearly double the share of his closest rival, Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch (R), who won 22%. (Indianapolis Star)

NEW YORK: A state Supreme Court judge has blocked an abortion rights amendment from appearing on the November ballot. The judge found lawmakers approved the measure before obtaining a written opinion from the Attorney General, violating state law. (State of Politics)

GEORGIA: Gov. Brian Kemp (R) has signed a new law defining probable cause for removing voters from the rolls when their eligibility is challenged. The bill defines death, evidence of registering elsewhere, a tax exemption indicating a primary residence is elsewhere or a nonresidential address as probable cause for removing voters. (Associated Press)

Republican activists have challenged the eligibility of more than 100,000 voters in recent years.

CRIME BLOTTER: North Dakota Rep. Claire Mara Cory (R) was charged with driving under the influence after an early morning traffic stop Tuesday. Cory will be arraigned May 21. (Grand Forks Herald)

By The Numbers

159: The number of bills introduced in states across the country this year to crack down on or ban the use of environmental, social and governance metrics in investing. Just four passed. (Pluribus News)

11.5%: The increase in patient demand at free health care clinics across Virginia over the last year, after the state’s Medicaid program began unwinding pandemic-era rules, leaving hundreds of thousands without insurance. At the same time, the number of clinic volunteers has been cut in half. (WTKR)

111: The number of firearm incidents reported in American schools this year, through April 29, according to the K-12 School Shooting Database. Nearly a quarter of K-12 teachers reported experiencing a gun lockdown last year. (Axios)

Off The Wall

More than a thousand sea lions have invaded San Francisco’s Pier 39, showing up in the highest numbers in 15 years. Researchers say they’re flocking to the Bay Area because of a massive school of anchovies swimming near the Farallon Islands. (Los Angeles Times)

The town government in Brooklyn, Ill., is in search of a new home after its building was condemned following a failed OSHA inspection. The building also houses the town’s fire department, though Mayor Vera Glasper Banks said firefighters are still responding to calls. (First Alert 4)

Quote of the Day

“Indeed, no auditor sets out to become a bathroom monitor.”

Utah Auditor John Dougall (R), writing to legislators objecting to a new law that requires his office to monitor reports of transgender people using bathrooms that conform to their gender identity. Dougall said his office had been inundated by thousands of frivolous complaints since setting up a reporting form last week. (KSL)