Apr 18, 2019
Regional Roundup
Beyond the meeting sessions, this year's keynote speakers will deliver valuable insights on  American history and its relation to modern political times, high-impact leadership, and the art of turning a second chance into redemption.

Award winning author and presidential historian, Jon Meacham will discuss The Soul of America and our history of transcending moments of crisis to call upon what Lincoln referred to as "the better angels of our nature."

While leading the first American Women's Everest Expedition, Alison Levine had to demonstrate leadership to avoid unrecoverable errors for her team while also overcoming intense physical challenges as an individual.  During her remarks she will draw from her experiences to demonstrate how leading in extreme environments is applicable off the mountain.

How does a bank robber end up arguing - and winning - U.S. Supreme Court cases? Shon Hopwood will share his personal story illustrating the importance of second chances, setting goals, and persevering to achieve your dreams.

Register today to join us in Big Sky, Montana to hear from our keynotes and other topic experts!
State & Federal Updates
On April 10, President Trump issued Executive Order "Promoting Energy Infrastructure and Economic Growth" aimed at streamlining the federal processes on energy infrastructure development. Among other things, the Executive Order directs the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to consult with states in reviewing section 401 of the Clean Water Act, as well as issue new guidance to states within 60 days. CSG West, along with several regional and national state associations, have previously and consistently expressed to the Administration and Congress that any changes to the Section 401 permitting process must not come at the expense of state authority. CSG West will work with its partners and the relevant federal agencies to ensure that federal action is informed by meaningful and substantive consultation with state officials.

Committee Update
As state legislatures opened their 2019 sessions, an array of topics presented an opportunity for great debate. Many states looked at establishing protections and coverage designed to meet the needs of more uninsured people, as well as ways to keep insurance premiums down. This is especially prevalent in the areas of reinsurance and prescription drug pricing.
Successful ballot initiatives prompted legislatures in Utah, Idaho, and Nebraska to expand Medicaid, while other states are looking at adding eligibility requirements to the program. 
These are just some of the major issues state legislatures are grappling with in 2019 that represent the efforts to make substantial changes to improve the health care experience for patients.

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Border Region

The second largest state in Mexico, Sonora is known for its prime coastal position, ample desert, and elevations reaching as high as 8,600 feet.  In 2017, the population reached over 3 million which includes eight groups of indigenous Sonoran's: The Mayo, Yaqui, Pima, Seri, Cucapá, Papago and Guarijio. The state of Sonora has several ports of entry with the United States, all positioned along the Arizona state border. In  2016, the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Sonora was $32 billion - 3.5% of Mexico's national GDP - with mining, quarrying, oil and gas extraction, and manufacturing contributing to 48% of the State's GDP.

Regional Updates
CSG West Director, Edgar Ruiz, and accompanying staff visited the thirteen western member states during their respective legislative sessions. Each state offered a warm welcome and opportunity to connect with our members while learning more about top areas of concern for the region. 

We hope to see you in Big Sky this July!

From March 25 to March 27, CSG West Director Edgar Ruiz and accompanying staff visited Olympia to meet with legislative leaders and newly elected members. This year's legislative session has been a busy one with over 550 bills still under review as of April 16.  Several bills that seem to be advancing aim to address tenant rights, public school funding, raising the age restriction for purchasing tobacco products, restrictions on debt collections, abolishing the death penalty, and an energy bill requiring electric utilities in the state to reach 100% carbon-neutral supply by 2030 and 100% carbon-free electricity by 2045.  Like other states, Washington also has a bill related to daylight savings time. The Senate  passed legislation that would require the state to permanently observe daylight saving time year-round, but will require voter approval during the next general election in 2020.

In early April, near the half way point of the 120 calendar-day session, CSG West Director Edgar Ruiz and accompanying staff visited the legislature and met with key members including Speaker Jason Frierson and newly selected Senate Majority Leader Nicole Cannizzaro.  With the session still underway and scheduled to adjourn on June 14, the legislature is addressing a wide variety of issues including public safety, criminal justice reform, and gun control. 

Early in February legislators passed SB143, which requires state-administered background checks on almost all private-party gun transfers or sales. On February 15, SB143 became newly elected Governor Steve Sisolak's first bill signed into law. Another first for the Governor came on April 1 when he signed his first executive order establishing Nevada's Complete Count Committee to ensure proper execution and appropriate representation for the 2020 Census.

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CSG West is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization serving western state legislatures. All active legislators are considered members of our organization and included in organizational correspondence regarding news and events. While we hope you find this information of use, we also understand the need for a tidy inbox. If you do not wish to receive email updates from us, please unsubscribe below to be removed from our email list.