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DOJ releases guidelines on drone operation by federal law enforcement

Last week, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) published guidelines for the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) or, as more commonly called, drones, by federal law enforcement. Currently, the FBI is the only agency using...more

Florida drone bill passed into law, more concerns raised about its restrictions

At the end of April, we posted on the passing of S.B. 766 through the Florida State legislature, and now on May 14, 2015, Governor Rick Scott signed into law the Freedom from Unwarranted Surveillance Act, in the State of...more

Justices Spar Over Pre-Emption as High Court Allows State Law Antitrust Claims to Proceed Against Interstate Pipelines

On April 21, 2015, in a 7-2 decision authored by Justice Breyer, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that state law antitrust claims brought against interstate pipeline companies by a group of manufacturers and other retail buyers...more

Supreme Court Update: Perez V. Mortgage Bankers ASS'n (13-1041), Dep't Of Transportation V. ASS'n Of American Railroads (13-1080)...

It's been a great week for admin-law junkies; maybe not so much for the D.C. Circuit, which suffered two unanimous reversals in Perez v. Mortgage Bankers Ass'n (13-1041) and Dep't of Transportation v. Ass'n of American...more

2014 Eminent Domain Year in Review & 2015 Forecast

At first it seemed 2014 had been a relatively slow year for eminent domain cases. But looking back, there was more activity than we initially recalled. There were few decisions that provided any dramatic shift in the...more

California Supreme Court To Resolve Appellate Court Split on Federal Preemption in Railroad Regulation

On December 10, 2014, the California Supreme Court granted petition for review in Friends of the Eel River v. North Coast Railroad Authority to resolve a split between the First and Third District Courts of Appeal. (230...more

First District Holds CEQA’s Application To Public Agency’s Approval of Railroad Operations Is Preempted By Federal Law Despite...

The North Coast Railroad Authority (NCRA), a public agency established by state law, contracted with Northwestern Pacific Railroad Company (NWPRC) to allow NWPRC to conduct freight services on tracks controlled by NCRA....more

Texas Railroad Commission Proposes New Rules Related to Pipeline Eminent Domain Claims

The November 2011 issue of the Energy Newsletter addressed the case of Texas Rice Land Partners, Ltd. v. Denbury Green Pipeline-Texas, LLC, in an article titled Texas Supreme Court Ruling May Slow the Installation of Certain...more

Amtrak's Metrics-Making Power Hangs In The Balance

In July 2013, the D.C. Circuit ruled that Section 207 of the Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act of 2008 ("PRIIA"), under which Amtrak and the Federal Railroad Administration ("FRA") jointly established metrics and...more

Supreme Court Grants Certiorari to Review D.C. Circuit Decision Hampering Amtrak's On-Time Performance

On June 23rd, the U.S. Supreme Court granted the government’s Writ of Certiorari to review the decision of the D.C. Circuit that many believe may be hampering Amtrak’s leverage with freight railroads and its on-time...more

Congress Considers Transportation Appropriations Provisions, Other Legislation Impacting Aviation

On Capitol Hill, legislators are working to pass a Transportation Appropriations bill that will fund aviation programs during the 2015 fiscal year. As part of the appropriations process, members of the House and Senate are...more

Interesting Valuation Dispute in Caltrans Eminent Domain Battle

The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) and the owner of Silveira Ranch are involved in an interesting valuation dispute stemming from Caltrans' acquisition of part of the ranchland needed for Highway 101...more

Eminent Domain to Be Used for I-80 and I-680 Interchange

California continues to move forward with more infrastructure improvement projects. According to an article in the Daily Republic, Agency starts eminent domain proceedings for I-80/680 project, the Solano Transportation...more

Spirit Airlines v. U.S. Dep’t of Transportation

Brief Of Amici Curiae CATO Institute And The National Federation Of Independent Business Small Business Legal Center In Support...

It is axiomatic that the freedom of speech is vitally important to our democratic society and that being able to criticize the government is at the core of this freedom. Yet government officials are constantly inventing new...more

New York Publishes MTA Payroll Tax Protective Refund Claim Procedures

Refund claims for employers should be filed on or before November 2, 2012. On October 17, the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance (Department) published guidance regarding the procedures for taxpayers to...more

Potential Refund Claims: New York MTA Payroll Tax Held Unconstitutional

Taxpayers should act now to protect refund claims based on the New York Supreme Court's recent determination that the MTA Payroll Tax is unconstitutional. On August 22, the New York State Supreme Court held that the New...more

New Virginia Supreme Court Opinions Affecting Virginia Local Government Law – November 4, 2011

The Virginia Supreme Court issued new opinions today. Two opinions relate to Virginia local government or laws applied by Virginia local governments. One opinion involves a Virginia local government (Montgomery County)...more

Supreme Court Rejects Railroad Commission Approval of Common Carrier Status in Condemnation Cases

On August 26, 2011, the Texas Supreme Court reversed and remanded a decision by the Ninth Court of Appeals to affirm the common carrier status and the eminent domain authority of a carbon dioxide (CO2) pipeline company,...more

Getting a Passport as a citizen of a State under Article IV, Section 2, Clause 1 of the Constitution of the United States of...

There are two provisions that relate to getting a passport in the United States (of America). The first provision deals with citizenship. The second concerns identity. This article deals with the first. 22...more

Electronic Privacy Information Center, et al., v. Janet Napolitano, et al.,

Opening Brief for Petitioners Electronic Privacy Information Center, et al.,

In Opening Brief, EPIC Urges Federal Appeals Court to Suspend Airport Body Scanner Program EPIC has filed the opening brief in EPIC v. DHS, No, 10-1157, a case that challenges the unilateral decision of the TSA to make...more

2008 General Election California Initiative Summary

In two weeks, Californians will go to the polls and vote for a new president, their legislative representatives in Washington and Sacramento and whether 12 ballot initiatives governing everything from the future of high speed...more

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