Author

Ariana Figueroa

Ariana Figueroa

Ariana covers the nation's capital for States Newsroom. Her areas of coverage include politics and policy, lobbying, elections and campaign finance.

EPA issues waiver for sales of 15 percent ethanol blend during summer driving season

By: - April 29, 2022

WASHINGTON — The EPA issued a fuel waiver Friday afternoon to allow for a heightened ethanol gasoline blend to be sold at service stations this summer, an attempt by the Biden administration to lower soaring fuel prices. In a letter to Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz, EPA administrator Michael S. Regan wrote that the waiver will allow gas stations to sell […]

Democratic leaders in Congress want more power for regulators over high gasoline prices

By: - April 28, 2022

WASHINGTON —  Democratic leaders in Congress critical of soaring gasoline prices say they will push legislation to allow the U.S. Federal Trade Commission and state attorneys general to go after oil companies that engage in price gouging in times of crisis. “Big oil has profited in this (and) has exploited the market,” House Speaker Nancy […]

U.S. House panel looks into disinformation targeted at communities of color

By: - April 28, 2022

WASHINGTON — Experts tracking disinformation efforts online detailed to lawmakers on a U.S. House Administration panel Thursday how communities of color are targets for those disinformation campaigns. Democrats on the Subcommittee on Elections expressed their concern about how communities of color are the subject of election and COVID-19 misinformation through various social media platforms such […]

Biden issues first pardons and sentencing commutations of his presidency

By: - April 26, 2022

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden on Tuesday granted clemency to nearly 80 individuals charged with nonviolent crimes and unveiled an administration strategy to help formerly incarcerated people secure employment. Of that list, three were pardons and 75 were commutations, which is a reduction in an individual’s prison sentence. They were the first pardons and commutations […]

LGBTQ community, people of color in the crosshairs of banned book movement

By: - April 16, 2022

Students in one Pennsylvania school district are not allowed to read a biography of the first Black U.S. president, Barack Obama. In some Tennessee classrooms, a nonfiction comic book about the atrocities of the Holocaust is banned. And one school district in Wisconsin banned from libraries a picture book about a gay rights activist who […]

DOJ rule cracks down untraceable firearms known as ‘ghost guns’

By: - April 11, 2022

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden unveiled Monday the Department of Justice’s plan to regulate untraceable firearms known as ghost guns, and also announced his nominee to lead the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The Department of Justice’s final rule bans the business of manufacturing ghost guns, such as “buy build shoot” kits that can […]

‘Sitting on a time bomb’: Mobile home residents at risk in red-hot housing market

By: - April 9, 2022

WASHINGTON — Jon Zang walks his dog several times a day in his mobile home community in West Goshen Township, Pennsylvania. It’s quiet, as most of his neighbors are at work. But he often wonders how many more walks he and his bulldog mix, Ladybug, will have down the streets of the place he’s called […]

More than 1,500 books have been banned in public schools, and a U.S. House panel asks why

By: - April 7, 2022

WASHINGTON — A U.S. House Oversight and Reform Committee panel on Thursday examined why thousands of books, predominantly written by marginalized authors, have been banned from public schools, and the impact of those actions on students and teachers. “Most books being targeted for censorship are books that introduce ideas about diversity or our common humanity, […]

immigration migrants border

U.S. House Democrats applaud end of Trump-era policy on migrants at the border

By: - April 6, 2022

WASHINGTON — Democrats at a U.S. House Homeland Security panel hearing on Wednesday praised the end of a Trump-era policy that turned away migrants pleading for asylum at the border. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said that the so-called Title 42 policy, enacted on public health grounds at the beginning of the […]

Pause on federal student loan repayments extended by Biden through Aug. 31

By: - April 6, 2022

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration announced plans Wednesday to extend the pause on federal student loan repayments until the end of August. “I recognized in recently extending the COVID-19 national emergency, we are still recovering from the pandemic and the unprecedented economic disruption it caused,” President Joe Biden said in a statement.  “If loan payments were […]

Migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border

Biden administration to halt pandemic policy blocking migrants who claim asylum

By: - April 1, 2022

WASHINGTON — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Friday the government will terminate a Trump-era policy that prevented migrants from claiming asylum during a health crisis, including the coronavirus pandemic. The policy will end on May 23, the CDC wrote in its notice. “There is no longer a serious danger that the entry of […]

Insulin price cap approved by U.S. House

By: - March 31, 2022

WASHINGTON — The U.S. House on Thursday passed a bill on a bipartisan 232-193 vote that would limit the price of insulin, as congressional Democrats met throughout the day with health care advocates to make their case for the proposal. Democratic Sens. Raphael Warnock of Georgia and Patty Murray of Washington state held a virtual […]