Pluribus AM: ‘In sausage-making, things are unpredictable’

Good morning, it’s Tuesday, June 4, 2024. In today’s edition, states ask for federal cannabis rules; Vermont to levy EV charges; Massachusetts unveils housing plan:

Top Stories

MARIJUANA: State cannabis regulators will renew calls for federal oversight of their industry at a meeting in Minnesota this week, a dozen years after Washington and Colorado became the first states to approve recreational marijuana. The group cheered the Drug Enforcement Agency’s move to reschedule marijuana. (Pluribus News)

SOCIAL MEDIA: Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes (R) has sued TikTok, alleging the company knowingly profits off the sexual exploitation of minors. It’s Utah’s second complaint against TikTok, this one focusing on the social media company’s TikTok Live feature. (Deseret News)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Vermont Gov. Phil Scott (R) has signed omnibus transportation legislation that includes a new $98 annual fee for electric vehicle registration. The fee, in lieu of gas taxes EV owners don’t have to pay, will be directed to the state transportation fund. (VTDigger)

HEALTH CARE: Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) has signed legislation raising the cap on civil damages those injured in medical malpractice cases can seek to $875,000, up from $300,000 currently allowed under state law. Damages for wrongful deaths will rise to $2.1 million. (Denver Post)

ABORTION: A federal judge on Monday issued a permanent injunction against North Carolina laws restricting medication abortion. The judge ruled against laws barring prescriptions during virtual appointments and laws requiring a 72-hour waiting period. (Raleigh News & Observer)

CRIMINAL JUSTICE: Louisiana lawmakers have approved legislation allowing judges to order the surgical castration of people convicted of sex crimes against minors. Louisiana would be the first state to allow such a punishment if Gov. Jeff Landry (R) signs the bill. (Associated Press)

HOUSING: Massachusetts House leaders unveiled a $6.2 billion bond proposal to combat the state’s housing crisis. The proposal would steer money toward affordable housing, tax credits and an overhaul of statewide zoning rules. (Boston Globe)

In Politics & Business

INDIANA: Paige Miller, the founder of Hamilton County Moms for Liberty, will run for governor as an independent. Miller and her running mate, defeated Republican candidate Jamie Reitenour, will need to collect 37,000 signatures by the end of this month to win a spot on the ballot. (Indianapolis Star)

ALASKA: State Sen. Click Bishop (R) is considering a run for governor in 2026, when Gov. Mike Dunleavy (R) faces term limits. Bishop did not file to run for re-election by the filing deadline over the weekend. (Alaska Beacon)

SOUTH DAKOTA: Secretary of State Monae Johnson’s (R) office has validated signatures for a ballot measure to legalize recreational marijuana, setting up a third try for legal pot backers. The court struck down the measure approved in 2020, and voters rejected the initiative in 2022. (Associated Press)

OREGON: In a leadership shuffle ahead of the elections, Senate Majority Leader Kate Lieber (D) will step down from her post next month to become co-chair of the Joint Ways and Means Committee. Lieber takes over for Sen. Elizabeth Steiner (D), who is leaving that role to focus on her bid for state treasurer. (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

By The Numbers

91%, 96%: The share of school vouchers in Ohio and Wisconsin, respectively, that went to students attending religious schools. Florida’s voucher program costs more than any other state, at about $3 billion a year. (Washington Post)

$1.7 billion to $1.9 billion: The estimated cost of rebuilding Baltimore’s Francis Scott Key Bridge, according to a request for proposal Maryland issued this week. The state hopes a new bridge can open by 2028. (WYPR)

6,100: The number of severe thunderstorms reported to NOAA in May, 85% higher than the average number of storms over the month in recent years. (MassLive)

4: The number of Oregon state workers who earned more than $500,000 last year, through both base and bonus income. Three of the four top earners work for Oregon’s Health Authority, while the fourth is the state Treasury’s chief investment officer. (Oregonian)

Off The Wall

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands will visit Georgia and New York next week, 415 years after Dutch explorer Henry Hudson put his name on the river bordering New York City. They have meetings scheduled with Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) and New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D). (State of Politics)

New York City Mayor Eric Adams (D), known for his hatred of rats, has been ticketed for a rat infestation at his Bedford-Stuyvesant townhome. It’s Adams’s fifth rat-related ticket since he became mayor in 2022. (Associated Press)

Los Angeles led the country last year in dog attacks on letter carriers. With 65, it topped Houston’s 56, Chicago’s 48, St. Louis’s 46 and Cleveland’s 44. California led all states with 727, followed by Texas with 411 and Ohio with 359. (U.S. Postal Service)

Quote of the Day

“It’s sausage-making, and in sausage-making, things are unpredictable.”

Illinois House Speaker Chris Welch (D), on the difficulties of passing a state budget despite Democrats’ large majority. (WTTW)