Local Governance

News & Analysis as of

The Ethics Advisor: The Proper Roles of Staff and Elected Officials

Most cities in California (an overwhelming 97 percent) operate under the “Council-Manager form of government,” under which the elected councilmembers directly hire and oversee one top-level employee (the city manager) to...more

California Governor Signs Bill Limiting Cities and Counties Use of Sales/Use Tax Agreements

The governor of California has signed SB 533, which, beginning on January 1, 2016, further limits the power of a city or a county to enter into an agreement with a retailer that would result in the payment, transfer,...more

Real Estate and Land Use - September 2015 #2

Use It or Lose It: San Clemente Required to Refund $10 Million in Unused Impact Fees: Walker v. City of San Clemente (August 28, 2015, G050552) - Why It Matters: In a strict reading of a local agency’s...more

Massive Terminations: A 2015 Key Issue for China Labor

“Massive terminations” occur in China when an employer terminates more than 20 employees or more than 10 percent of its total employees at one time. Even though there are no official statistics on massive terminations of...more

Successful Strategies for Doing Business in Asia: India (Updated)

1. WHAT ROLE WILL THE GOVERNMENT OF INDIA PLAY IN APPROVING AND REGULATING FOREIGN DIRECT INVESTMENT? Historically, India has been a regulated economy since its independence. The government of India (GOI) launched a new...more

Changes to Sunday Trading Laws – Good News for Retailers?

In his emergency summer budget of July 8, Chancellor George Osborne announced changes to the Sunday trading rules in England and Wales. In this bulletin we provide a brief reminder of the current rules and look at what the...more

County's Decision to Reject Controversial Ad Did Not Violate the First Amendment

Rejecting a First Amendment challenge, a county can choose to not run an advertisement on its own bus system if it might cause vandalism and violence, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals held this week. The court...more

CEQA Alert UPDATE: Petitions for Review Filed in Greenhouse Gas and ICCTA Preemption Cases

As previously reported, two decisions by California’s Fourth Appellate District in late 2014 highlighted CEQA compliance challenges facing local governments charged with implementing state and local greenhouse gas emissions...more

Michigan Puts New Road-Funding Tax Structure Up For May 5 Referendum Vote

Michigan voters will have the final say on approving a deal between Gov. Rick Snyder and the Michigan Legislature to overhaul the state’s tax structure to fund road improvements at a referendum election on May 5, 2015. The...more

Seven Attributes of Good Local Government Leadership

As a long-time local government attorney, I have had the opportunity to study local government officials a lot. Over the years, I have sat on the dais or in the meeting room or in a conference room and examined the traits of...more

Asheville City Hall's Celebratory "Rainbow Flag" Challenged on Basis of Local Government Powers

All are presumed to know about the recent activity around the legal issue -- not the human issue, the legal issue -- of same-sex marriage. In Asheville, in response to the coming legal change, the City Council earlier...more

A Pending Supreme Court Case and an FCC Rulemaking May Impact How Local Planning Agencies Handle Wireless Facilities

As wireless towers and other facilities continue to sprout at a rapid pace, regulations that balance your community’s needs and those of wireless providers must keep up. Local governments and their planners should watch two...more

Here’s an Energy Idea More Municipal Leaders Need to Consider

Municipal leaders, both first-termers and seasoned incumbents, are reviewing energy usage by and within their municipalities. The buck often starts and stops with using CFL light bulbs, installing LED traffic lights, and...more

Ninth Circuit: City Requirement That Cell-Tower Company Obtain Voter Approval Upheld

When T-Mobile sought to place a cell-tower in a park owned by the City of Huntington Beach, California, the City granted the company all the regulatory approvals it required. But the City also informed T-Mobile that before...more

Court Denies Cell-Tower Company's Challenge to Initiative Requiring Voter-Approval Before City Can Lease Property

Decision Could Be Relevant to Upcoming FCC Rulemaking - An appellate court last week ruled that a provision of the federal Communications Act limiting how a local government may regulate the “placement, construction,...more

Q&A With Bilzin Sumberg's Al Dotson

Originally Published in Law360 on March 13, 2013. Q: What is the most challenging case you have worked on and what made it challenging? A: One of the most challenging matters in which I am involved is the Miami...more

Public Works Employment Verification Act Impacts Certain Projects Awarded by State and Local Governments in 2013

Pennsylvania's General Assembly recently enacted the Public Works Employment Verification Act (the "Act" or "Verification Act") (43 P.S. §§ 167.1 et seq.), aimed at ensuring that contractors and subcontractors on public works...more

Change To Local Delaware Rule Governing Deadline For Filing And Service Of Motions

On February 1, 2013, the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware adopted a revised version of the Local Rules of Bankruptcy Practice and Procedure of the Court (the Local Rules). This Alert provides the...more

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