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PSN In The News

Jun 18, 2009
WASHINGTON — State legislators urged Congress and the White House on Wednesday to enact comprehensive health care legislation that includes a public health insurance component by year's end.

Members of the Progressive States Network, a state government coalition, met with Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to lobby for a public insurance option. They said that would answer Americans' call to provide health care coverage for all.
Jun 18, 2009
Would you buy a health-insurance policy sold by the U.S. government? What if it offered good coverage, affordable rates and were available anywhere in the country?

Pushing back against Republican attacks on President Obama's vision of a public-health plan, a nationwide coalition of state lawmakers, small-business owners, physicians, community groups and others Wednesday launched a public-relations campaign aimed at building support for an option they believe is essential for meaningful health reform.
Jun 17, 2009
Wednesday’s lobbying push starts at the top: Former Senate Majority Leaders Tom Daschle, Bob Dole and Howard Baker announce recommendations at a noon ET press conference in Washington, as organized by the Bipartisan Policy Center.

And it moves down to the state level, with the Progressive States Network fanning out on the Hill and to the White House to make the case.
Jun 17, 2009

Senator Tom Harkin, Democrat of Iowa, has his own event, releasing a letter from more than 600 state legislators urging Congress and the administration to enact health care reform by the end of the year. The letter calls for any reform to include a public health option, something Mr. Harkin firmly backs himself.
Jun 17, 2009
Both Sebelius and Nancy-Ann DeParle, White House director of health care reform, were set to meet Wednesday afternoon with a group of state legislators called the Progressive States Network who support a public option as part of any overhaul plan. The lawmakers said at a press conference that they will bring along a letter signed by 700 legislators calling for a public health insurance plan as part of comprehensive health reform.
Jun 16, 2009
State Sen. Karen Keiser is headed to the Washington, D.C., for the second time in a little over a month. This time she is adding her voice to other state lawmakers calling for health care reform.

The Kent Democrat says she will is joining a group at the White House Wednesday for a meeting with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. Keiser also is attending a related press event with Democratic U.S. Sen. Tom Harkin of Iowa.

The state lawmakers want passage of health care reform by year's end, and they want a public-insurance option.
Mar 19, 2009
President Barack Obama's $787 billion federal stimulus package, now known as the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009, is designed to jumpstart the nation's failing economy not only through grants and middle-class tax cuts, but by funding state ''shovel-ready'' construction projects that will hopefully produce thousands of jobs and small business opportunities, especially in the black community.

Just last week, Pres. Obama unveiled new proposals to allow small businesses easier access to loans and capital through the US Small Business Administration in an effort to empower them to take better advantage of stimulus package opportunities.

But even before North Carolina fully determines how to distribute its $6.1 billion in federal stimulus funding, questions are being raised as to how African-Americans can best access their share of the opportunity pot.
Mar 12, 2009
PORTLAND, Ore. (NNPA) - Rep. Chip Shields (D-Portland) this week introduced a bipartisan bill that would provide oversight of how state-chartered banks are spending money disbursed through the Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP).

The move comes at the same time another new bill would create a statewide “stimulus czar” to oversee the influx of money expected from President Barack Obama’s economic plan.

If passed, Shields’ House Bill 2784 would convene a bipartisan group of Oregon state senators and representatives, as well as members of the Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services and representatives of the financial industry, to provide oversight and evaluate the need for regulation of operations of financial institutions licensed, certified or chartered in this state that receive funds from the TARP program.
Mar 08, 2009
Ever since Steve Watson had his first job at age 16 picking asparagus, he's paid his taxes. And he's always wanted to ensure the government spends his money wisely.

So naturally, when the 53-year-old heard that President Barack Obama pledged a new era of transparency with his 3-week-old $787 billion stimulus package, Watson was glad he could log online and check how every dollar was spent.
Mar 03, 2009
“State leaders face real change, as promised by President Obama. States will need to collect data from agencies, from contractors, from subcontractors, that they have never collected before,” said Nathan Newman, interim executive director of the Progressive States Network, a research group based in New York whose members include many state policymakers.