David A. Lieb/Associated Press
Officials in several battleground states have proposed boosting funding to add staff, enhance security and expand training within election offices ahead of the 2024 race. The proposed funding increases come as many election offices are grappling with a wave of retirements and a flood of public records requests from election skeptics, stemming partly from lingering election distrust seeded by former President Donald Trump. A top South Carolina election official says almost half of county election directors have resigned in the last two years.
An Associated Press analysis has found a growing number of hazardous dams in poor condition across the U.S. The AP tallied more than 2,200 dams in poor or unsatisfactory condition that are rated as high hazard, meaning their failure likely would kill someone. That figure is up substantially from a similar AP review three years ago. Experts say the increase is a result partly of deferred maintenance and new development downstream from old dams that weren't necessarily designed to today's standards. The federal government's National Inventory of Dams has been updated to make the conditions of many dams public, but some agencies still withhold that information.The number of high-hazard dams in deficient condition in South Carolina rose by a third from 2018 to 2021.
The attorneys general of 26 states have filed federal lawsuits challenging a vaccine mandate for employers issued by the Biden administration. They generally contend that the authority to compel vaccinations rests with the states, not the federal government. The new mandate applies to private employers with at least 100 workers. The Biden administration says it is confident its requirement will withstand the challenges, but legal experts are divided over which side is likely to prevail. Several businesses also joined the lawsuits filed Friday, saying they don't want to insert themselves into their employees' health care decisions.