A roundup of legislative and Capitol news items of interest for Thursday, April 8, 2021:
NEW YORK (AP) — Several weeks have passed since Texas ended its COVID-19 mask mandate. But if you want to pick up a snack at Soul Popped Gourmet Popcorn in Austin’s Barton Creek Square Mall, you’ll still be turned away if you aren’t wearing a face covering.
BOSTON (AP) — President Joe Biden should help those struggling under crushing student loan debt by immediately canceling up to $50,000 of debt for federal student loan borrowers, Democratic elected officials said Thursday.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Views of the nation’s economy are the rosiest they’ve been since the pandemic began more than a year ago, buoyed by Democrats feeling increasingly optimistic as President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion relief package is distributed across the country.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration is quietly ramping up assistance to the Palestinians after former President Donald Trump cut off nearly all aid. Since taking office with a pledge to reverse many of Trump's Israeli-Palestinian decisions, the administration has allocated nearly $100 million for the Palestinians, only a small portion of which has been publicized.
Travel activist, renowned author and TV host Rick Steves has weighed in on the ways in which he believes the COVID-19 pandemic may continue to impact travel as it begins to resume in earnest.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate passed a bill 92-7 on Thursday to extend the deadline for business owners to apply for forgivable loans through the Paycheck Protection Program, giving applicants two more months to apply for federal aid.
DENVER (AP) — Colorado Gov. Jared Polis on Monday announced a statewide tour to hear from residents and gather ideas on how to spend the state's portion of the federal government's $1.9 trillion plan to support the U.S. economy amid the coronavirus pandemic.
NEW YORK (AP) — The new head of the Small Business Administration says she expects to make changes at the agency that she says will enable it to further help small companies devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic.
NEW YORK (AP) — A trade bottleneck born of the COVID-19 outbreak has U.S. businesses anxiously awaiting goods from Asia — while off the coast of California, dozens of container ships sit anchored, unable to unload their cargo.
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — As New Mexico's annual legislative session came to a close Saturday, legislators charted an economic exit from the COVID-19 pandemic and checked off progressive priorities on policing reforms, abortion rights, medical aid in dying and child poverty.
PHOENIX (AP) — A new voter-approved tax on high-earning Arizonans that will boost education spending is firmly in Gov. Doug Ducey's crosshairs, with the Republican vowing Friday to see Proposition 208's new tax cancelled either through the courts or the GOP-controlled Legislature.
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — A former Republican candidate for governor has agreed to pay a $90,000 civil penalty to settle an elections complaint, marking the largest amount collected from an individual Connecticut candidate.
In the months since the police killing of George Floyd sparked a racial reckoning in the United States, American corporations have emerged as an unexpected leading source of funding for social justice.
CHESTER, Pa. (AP) — President Joe Biden turned up at a minority-owned flooring business in suburban Philadelphia to highlight how his $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package can help small businesses and to put a face on those who have struggled throughout the pandemic.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate on Tuesday overwhelmingly approved President Joe Biden's pick to oversee the Small Business Administration, an agency that has seen its portfolio expand in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) — Legislative leaders on Monday postponed the deadline for Nevada lawmakers to introduce bills for them to be considered in the current 120-day legislative session.
(The Conversation is an independent and nonprofit source of news, analysis and commentary from academic experts.)
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