Prescription Drug Transparency, Violent Crime, the Shutdown, and More

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Prescription Drug Price Transparency: There is a movement in states toward requiring drug companies to disclose costs and profits in order to help drive down prices. In Massachusetts, SB 1048 would require such disclosure for a fairly small number of drugs on a “critical prescription drug list.” Other disclosure bills have been introduced in California, North Carolina, Oregon and Pennsylvania.

What, if anything, is causing violent crime to increase? The media have saying that violent crime is on the rise, and it seems to be true—but only in some jurisdictions and not others. Is there a logical reason why homicide has increased significantly in cities like Baltimore and Washington, D.C. while other places like Philadelphia and New York have seen little change? Yes. Read about it on IdeaLog, our blog intended to raise eyebrows and engage minds.

How the federal budget (and the shutdown) affects you: Thursday, October 1 @3pm Eastern, 2pm Central, 1pm Mountain, Noon Pacific. Once again, the federal government may shut down on October 1, this time because of an absurd plan to defund Planned Parenthood. Campaign for America’s Future co-director Bob Borosage will explain what’s going on and how it will affect state and local governments, as well as individuals everywhere. Register for the webinar here.

California passes strong climate change bill: The legislature passed SB 350 which requires the state to increase from 33 to 50 percent the proportion of electricity the state derives from renewable sources. The Environmental Defense Fund considers the bill a historic victory but some compromises were made.

California passes automatic voter registration: The legislature passed AB 1461, the New Motor Voter Act, which automatically registers to vote any adult citizen who gets or renews a driver’s license, gets a state ID card, or fills out a change of address form with the Department of Motor Vehicles—unless he or she declines to be registered.

Latest update on legislation at the state and local levels: Read our newly-updated Compendium. And we welcome input! If you have additions, please contact