Some states are still struggling; California has lost 32,000 teaching positions since 2008. Here, teachers, parents and supporters rally as the Los Angeles Unified School District board meets to consider budget cuts and layoffs on Feb. 14.
Credit Damian Dovarganes / AP
In Kansas, legislators are considering devoting extra funds to tax relief instead of hiring more state workers. Republican state Rep. Joe Patton of Topeka, shown in November, talks about proposals to eliminate the state's income tax.
At the end of most previous recessions, hiring has increased among state and local governments, helping the broader economy to recover.
That's not happening this time around.
Layoffs have started to taper off, and tax receipts are starting to improve. But states are still a long way from bringing their workforces back up to pre-recession levels. And cities and counties remain in greater fiscal peril.
As he's been reporting for NPR.org in recent months, Alan Greenblatt has noticed something unusual: he's increasingly being asked to prove who he is and that he is, in fact, a journalist. Here's what he found when he started to ask why that's happening:
How many people would bother to impersonate a reporter? Enough, apparently, to cause some government officials to do preliminary background checks on people to whom they grant interviews.
A shooting spree that left three African-Americans dead in Oklahoma and the death of unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin have renewed public debate about hate crime laws. Host Michel Martin speaks with law professor and former federal prosecutor Paul Butler about hate crime statutes and whether they're necessary.
Originally published on Tue April 10, 2012 7:31 am
The key moment in the manhunt for suspects in a murder spree that terrorized African-Americans in Tulsa, Okla., came Saturday morning when a tip was called in to the city's Crime Stoppers hotline, the Tulsa World says.