Va., W.Va. shun ‘Race to Top’ cash
MINNEAPOLIS | About two dozen states are taking a second shot at millions of dollars for schools in the federal “Race to the Top” grant program, but at least nine others are opting out.
For those nine, the chance at hundreds of millions of dollars wasn’t enough to overcome the objections of teachers unions, reluctance to pass laws to suit the program or fears of giving up too much local control.
Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota, Oregon, South Dakota, Virginia, West Virginia and Wyoming will all be on the sidelines for the second round.
None of the nine did very well in the first round and needed to pass new education laws to be competitive. Some wanted to do so, but decided there wasn’t enough time before the Tuesday deadline for the second round.
So far, only two states, Delaware and Tennessee, have been approved for the money.
Calif. begins steps to enact reforms
SACRAMENTO, Calif. | The debate over national health care reform has moved to the California Legislature, which will begin taking the initial steps to implement overhauls prescribed by Congress.
More than 20 bills have been introduced and as many as a dozen might be voted on this week.
The legislation would prohibit health insurers from denying coverage because of pre-existing conditions and create an exchange through which people could buy insurance.
Another bill would make insurance companies obtain state approval before raising their fees.
Republican lawmakers say the state is acting prematurely and that some of the changes could make health insurance more expensive.
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