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Elaine S. Povich

Staff Writer, Stateline

Elaine S. Povich is an award-winning reporter who covers tax and budget issues for Stateline. Povich has reported from Washington for Newsday, the Chicago Tribune and UPI. She also covered taxes and government finances as a freelancer for The Fiscal Times, Governing, AOLGovernment, Kiplinger and AARP Bulletin. She has written three books and is an adjunct professor of journalism at Maryland.

The need for daily access to computers and the Internet during the COVID-19 pandemic is fueling a push by some lawmakers to reduce the barriers that stand between consumers and computer repairs.
“We vaccinated people on snow machines, on four wheelers, in trucks, in airplanes, standing on tarmacs in -20 windchill, in clinics, in houses — basically anywhere we could to get as many people vaccinated as quickly as possible.”
New Hampshire says Massachusetts may not collect income taxes from employees working at home in another state.
Millions of Americans are working remotely and experts predict that many will continue to do so after the pandemic ebbs. That could lead tax departments in more states to examine the feasibility of taxing remote workers.
The achievement gap is going to get worse.
Governors’ actions have transcended party. Republicans like Charlie Baker in Massachusetts and Larry Hogan in Maryland, as well as Democrats like Andrew Cuomo in New York and Gavin Newsom in California, have taken the lead.
Emergency declarations have activated state price-gouging laws.
The measures would require manufacturers to supply parts to independent repair shops.
Some states are shifting resources to fix problems, finding they must hire more personnel and spend more money to comply by the deadline. The Department of Homeland Security says it has no plans to extend the 2020 deadline.
State police may take driver’s licenses mistakenly deemed to be Real ID compliant.
Several states have moved to get rid of traffic cameras in their communities as complaints pour in from drivers who think they are there to reap revenue rather than prevent accidents.
Despite a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in June allowing states to collect sales taxes when their residents buy online, some online retailers don’t want to help other states collect the money.
Twenty states have some laws that apply widely, but unevenly, to electric bikes. The rest have no e-bike laws at all.
At least 16 states debated bills to regulate the short-term rental industry this year. Only one, Indiana’s, was signed into law.
The use of "marketplace facilitators," like Amazon Marketplace, means many small businesses avoid paying state sales tax. Online amnesty programs are an attempt to bring them back into the fold by allowing them to make good faith estimates of their back taxes.
As the revenue from gasoline taxes decreases with the rise of fuel-efficient vehicles, many states are looking for alternative sources of money to build and maintain their roads, bridges and other infrastructure.
Unlike old-economy taxicab companies, the new ride-hailing services often pay little to none of the license fees or taxes that taxi businesses hand over to cities, counties and states for the right to operate.
Backers of the Internet streaming levy say it’s just another step in governments’ attempts to adapt the tax code to the modern world.
Instead of banning daily fantasy sports sites, some states are looking to regulate and tax them.
Washington is the latest state considering the move, intended to discourage the use of carbon fuel like coal and oil by making them more expensive.
Some states are looking at taxing new or different endeavors, like digital downloads, in the face of a changing economy.
Should Tesla and other auto companies be allowed to sell directly to consumers? Some states say no.
Are DraftKings and FanDuel gambling or games of skill? States are weighing that as they move toward regulating and even taxing the popular daily fantasy sports sites.
Some states are proposing ideas to outfit vehicles with GPS-like tracking devices that will measure mileage and tax citizens depending on how far they drive.
Storing data on the cloud? Some states are preparing to tax that.
Tired of waiting for federal transportation dollars, eight states either hiked gas taxes or scaled back a planned cut to bring in more money.
To shame tax scofflaws into paying up, some states are publishing their names and the amounts they owe on public websites.
California’s drought is grabbing headlines, but other states face water woes too.
Some governors want to close budget gaps by cutting state spending on colleges and universities. Will the cuts make schools more efficient—or less able to fulfill their mission of educating students?
Gas prices are dropping all over the country. Will state lawmakers take the opportunity to raise gasoline taxes?