State and Local Government

News & Analysis as of

Local Campaign Finance Reform: Can Local Agencies Wean the Baby From “Mother’s Milk?” (Part 1)

It is an issue that has been with us since the earliest days of politics: The wealthy tend to have disproportionate influence over our political leaders in contrast to the poor and middle class. In the immortal words of the...more

The Saga of Pennsylvania's Act 13 Comes to an End

With a bang, rather than a whimper, the saga of Pennsylvania’s Act 13 appears to have finally come to an end. On September 28, 2016, nearly three years after giving teeth to the long-dormant environmental rights amendment to...more

New Delaware Unclaimed Property Decision Further Complicates Landscape

Another federal judge slams Delaware’s unclaimed property audit methodology but rejects the holder’s reliance on the priority rules as a defense to the audit demands. See Marathon Petroleum Corp. et al. v. Cook et al., No....more

News from Second and State

Yesterday was the first day of fall, and it seems the summer is truly behind us. The House of Representatives reconvened this week for the final stretch of the 2015-2016 legislative session. This week most of the action...more

NHTSA Releases Highly Anticipated Federal Automated Vehicles Policy

60-Day Comment Period Provides Important Chance to Have Local Voices Heard - With the goal of creating a path for the safe testing and deployment of autonomous vehicles on public roads nationwide, the U.S. Department of...more

Legislature to Litigants: “Can’t Touch This!” – Virginia Supreme Court Recognizes Legislative Privilege

The Virginia Supreme Court, interpreting the Virginia Constitution’s speech and debate clauses, has recognized a legislative privilege from responding to a document subpoena substantially similar to that of the better-known...more

Employers Should Not Retreat on Compliance Planning Despite Two-Pronged Attack on OT Rule

Two lawsuits related to the Department of Labor’s revisions to the white-collar exemptions have been filed in East Texas. The first lawsuit, citing (among other things) the severe impact the impending salary increase...more

Federal and State Authorities Take First Steps Toward Regulating Blockchain, Mobile Banking and Digital Financial Services

Last week, federal and state lawmakers took significant steps toward specific regulations targeting digital financial technology, mobile banking and cybersecurity, signaling the possibility of wholesale changes to the legal...more

News from Second and Sate

Summer Recap: - As of our last newsletter, the General Assembly had recessed after pushing a 2016-2017 state budget over the finish line to meet the June 30 deadline just in the nick of time. Gov. Wolf let the budget...more

The SEC Wins First Jury Trial in a Muni Case: SEC v. City of Miami and Michael Boudreaux

In what the SEC called “the first federal jury trial by the SEC against a municipality or one of its officers for violations of the federal securities laws,” a jury in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of...more

California Legislative Update - New Laws Affecting Builders and Contractors

August marks the return to school and bill signing season for California Governor Jerry Brown. In the past month – and like he does every August and September – Governor Brown signed well over one hundred pieces of...more

Legislation Establishes New Reporting Requirements for State and Local Debt Obligations

Annual Reports Filed with the California Debt and Investment Advisory Commission Must Include Additional Information - State and local agencies that issue debt must now file new specified information in the annual...more

The Ethics Advisor: The Details Matter — Recusing Yourself Due to Conflict of Interest

Once, when I had put a lot of time and attention into arranging the particulars of social engagement, an old acquaintance called me a “detallista.” At the time, I think she may have meant it more as a slight than a...more

TN Legislative Update: And, the Deannexation Discussion Continues

Just because the Legislature isn’t in session doesn't mean there isn’t work to be done and post-session obligations to keep. You may recall an issue from this year's legislative session that received quite a bit of attention...more

Worth Another Look: Sentencing Reforms

In January of 2016, the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) published a list of the top ten issues that will be before state legislatures across the nation this year. Since Pennsylvania will close out the...more

Worth Another Look: Electric Vehicle Fees

In January of 2016, the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) published a list of the top ten issues that will be before state legislatures across the nation this year. Since Pennsylvania will close out the...more

Worth Another Look: Human Trafficking

In January of 2016, the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) published a list of the top ten issues that will be before state legislatures across the nation this year. Since Pennsylvania will close out the...more

Worth Another Look: Anti-Discrimination Legislation

In January of 2016, the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) published a list of the top ten issues that will be before state legislatures across the nation this year. Since Pennsylvania will close out the...more

Real Estate and Land Use - August 2016 #3

Supreme Court Clarifies Valuation Rules on Potential for Future Exactions - City of Perris v. Stamper S217738 (Cal. Supreme Court, July 21, 2016) - Why it matters: The California Supreme Court reexamined the rules...more

Executive Orders for Tropical Storm Hermine Provide Development Approval Extension Opportunity

Governor Scott has recently issued emergency declarations applicable to 51 Florida Counties, providing opportunities for extending certain development approvals within those areas. Florida Statute 252.363 provides an...more

I Hate Home Rule

Massachusetts is a Home Rule state (Commonwealth, actually, but that’s a separate issue). Our 351 cities and towns can pretty much legislate as they please, so long as the local action is not preempted. Our state Wetlands...more

Employment Law Commentary, August 2016 - Massachusetts Passes Gender Equity Law – A Harbinger Of Things To Come?

On August 1, 2016, Massachusetts became the first state to pass a law barring employers from asking applicants to disclose their salary history before offering a job. Proponents of Massachusetts’ bipartisan legislation hope...more

California Considers Rules For Data Security, Geolocation ­

On Wednesday, August 24, the California state senate (the “Senate”) took action on a bill that would expand the definition of protected personal consumer data to include geolocation and biometric information while also...more

California's Legislature Puts Additional Disclosure Pressure on Fund Managers with the Passage of AB 2833

On August 24th, the California Legislature approved Assembly Bill No. 2833 (“AB 2833”), which is now headed to Governor Jerry Brown’s desk for signature. If Governor Brown signs the bill, as is expected, all public pension...more

Move Over AB 32, Here Comes SB 32! (and AB 197)

Last week, the California Legislature voted to extend the state's ambitious climate change targets while simultaneously pushing a reform bill covering the California Air Resources Board (ARB). Senate Bill 32 (SB 32)...more

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