Civil Procedure Elections & Politics

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Tuolumne Jobs Case

The California Supreme Court has just issued an opinion which may encourage the use of initiatives. At issue in the case was an initiative to adopt a specific plan to streamline approval for construction and operation of a...more

ALJ Declares NLRB’S Dues Checkoff Termination Decision a Dead Letter

In WKYC-TV, Inc., 359 NLRB No. 30 (2012), the NLRB overruled 50 years of precedent under Bethlehem Steel, 136 NLRB 1500 (1962), and held that going forward, employers could not unilaterally end dues checkoff at the expiration...more

Patent Troll Legislation: Oregon State Courts Curb Abuse of Patent Laws by NPEs

Patent trolls, or more politely, Non-Practicing Entities (NPEs), are firms that collect “license” fees on patent rights by threatening lawsuits. Rarely do NPEs make any products, provide any services or operate any systems...more

Sunshine Ordinance Preempted by City Charter Provision Creating Attorney-Client Privilege

The First District Court of Appeal determined that City of San Francisco (“City”) resident Allen Grossman (“Grossman”) was not entitled to documents related to the development of certain San Francisco Ethics Commission...more

Supreme Court Opens Escape Path From CEQA Via Citizens Initiative – Tuolumne Jobs & Small Business Alliance v. Superior Court

Why it matters: Project proponents may avoid CEQA altogether by gathering sufficient voter signatures and then having the local City Council approve the proposed project, without submitting the measure to a vote of the...more

California Supreme Court Holds No CEQA Review Required for a Voter Initiative-Sponsored Ordinance

In a relatively short decision, the California Supreme Court held in Tuolumne Jobs & Small Business Alliance v. Superior Court of Tuolumne County (Tuolumne Jobs) that the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) does not...more

Decision: Voter-Sponsored Local Land Use Initiatives Not Subject to Environmental Review

The proposed expansion of a Wal-Mart store into a Wal-Mart Supercenter in the City of Tuolumne, Calif. yielded a California Supreme Court decision that says city councils need not comply with CEQA before adopting a...more

Supreme Court Confirms CEQA Exemption for Voter-Sponsored Initiatives

In Tuolumne Jobs & Small Business Alliance v. Superior Court, No. S207173 (Supreme Court, Aug. 7, 2014), the California Supreme Court ruled that the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) does not apply when a lead...more

Supreme Court Blocks Citizens United Advisory Proposition From Ballot

I’ve previously reported on SB 1272 which was rushed through the legislature and allowed to become “law” without Governor Brown’s signature. The bill, authored by Senator Ted Lieu, calls for an advisory vote on whether the...more

The California Supreme Court Further Limits the Scope of CEQA Review for Voter-Sponsored Initiatives in Tuolumne Jobs & Small...

Voter-driven initiatives meeting California Elections Code requirements may be adopted directly by local governments without first conducting a full review under the California Environmental Quality Act ("CEQA"), according to...more

No CEQA Review Required For Initiative Measures, Whether Adopted By City Council Or Voters

The Supreme Court of California has held that CEQA review was not required before the Sonora City Council adopted an initiative measure approving a specific plan for expansion of a Wal-Mart store. The court held that: the...more

California Supreme Court Holds CEQA Inapplicable To City’s Adoption Of Qualified Voter Initiative Approving Wal-Mart “Supercenter”...

In a concise 15-page opinion filed August 7, 2014, the California Supreme Court reversed the Fifth District Court of Appeal’s judgment which had held that a city may not adopt a voter-sponsored initiative with potential...more

California Supreme Court Rules Local Governments Are Not Required to Comply With CEQA Before Adopting a Voter-Sponsored Initiative

Opinion Clarifies When CEQA Review is Required for Local Land Use Initiatives - Local governments may adopt voter-sponsored initiatives without conducing environmental review pursuant to the California Environmental...more

Business Court Modernization Bill is now Law

This session we've watched SB 853 - Business Court Modernization work through the legislative process and we are impressed by freshman Senator Tamara Barringer's first big effort. All you lawyers who take on complex...more

CEQA Alert: California Supreme Court Holds No CEQA Review is Required for Adoption of Voter-Sponsored Initiatives

On August 7, the California Supreme Court filled the last gap in the interpretation of CEQA in the context of land use initiatives. Previously, the courts had determined that (1) CEQA compliance is required for land use...more

CA Supreme Court Rules ‘No CEQA Required’ When Agencies Adopt Citizen-Sponsored Initiatives

The California Supreme Court unanimously ruled that when a city council or county board of supervisors adopts a citizen-sponsored land use initiative, rather than placing it on the ballot, it need not comply with the...more

NLRB Ratifies Administrative Actions Taken during Invalid Recess Appointment Period

On the heels of the U.S. Supreme Court’s June ruling in N.L.R.B. v. Noel Canning, et al., which invalidated President Obama’s 2012 recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), the NLRB recently ratified a...more

Justice Moseley’s Departure Creates Unusual Election Scenario

In early June, Fifth Court of Appeals Justice Jim Moseley (pictured) announced that he would be leaving the Court this month. He has since decided to join Gray, Reed & McGraw, where he will chair the firm’s appellate section....more

Significant Legislation Affecting Business Passed by General Assembly

At the end of last week, the North Carolina General Assembly passed significant legislation affecting the State’s business legal climate. With large bipartisan majorities, the Legislature adopted Senate Bill 853 (SB 853),...more

You May Not Know: Congress Issues Subpoenas, But Also Receives Them

Ted Hester, Eleanor Hill and Dan Donovan of our group are well aware of Congress' penchant for issuing subpoenas for records and the testimony of corporate officials. They often engage in extensive negotiations with...more

'Ralls' Decision Doesn't Alter CFIUS Voluntary Reporting Analysis for Foreign Investment in U.S.

A lot of attention has been given to a recent decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia (D.C. Court of Appeals) unanimously ruling against President Barack Obama relating to his order stopping Chinese...more

Statutory Right to Appeal Does Not Bypass Article III Standing Requirements

Consumer Watchdog v. Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation - The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit dismissed an appeal from the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (the Board) on the grounds that the appellant, a...more

D.C. Circuit Issues Ruling in Important CFIUS Case

The D.C. Court of Appeals recently issued a landmark decision in Ralls Corporation v. Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), No. 13-5315, slip. op. (D.C. Cir. July 15, 2014), that could have...more

Progress Toward Comprehensive Patent Reform Stalls

On May 21, 2014, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) announced that he was removing patent reform legislation from the Committee's agenda, effectively eliminating any chance for Senate consideration this...more

CFIUS and FINSA: Analyzing “foreign control”, “national security risk” and other factors

My recent CFIUS post explained the basic legislative scheme and review process of the Foreign Investment in National Security Act (“FINSA”), which gives the President of the United States, acting upon the recommendation of...more

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