Author: Lisa Soronen

Chicago, San Francisco, and California Sue Over “Sanctuary City” Rules

Two American cities and one U.S. state have filed suit against Attorney General Jeff Sessions over grant restrictions for so-called “sanctuary cities” — raising the prospect of further fights and delays on contentious immigration issues. In July, the Department of Justice (DOJ) added two new requirements for states and local governments to receive federal Edward

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2018 Supreme Court Preview for Local Governments

Lisa Soronen details the four most interesting cases for local governments to be reviewed this coming fall — plus one monumental case still under consideration that will affect every city in America. Most of the Supreme Court’s interesting grants for its new term (beginning the first Monday in October) usually come in the fall. It

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District Court Refuses to Reconsider Sanctuary Jurisdictions Ruling

The court rejected the weight the Department of Justice tried to place on the recent memo from Attorney General Jeff Sessions, concluding it is not likely a binding legal opinion. So, is the executive order currently enforceable? In April, a federal district court issued a nationwide preliminary injunction preventing the Trump Administration from enforcing the

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Supreme Court Review for Local Governments: June 2017

In the last month of its term (June), the Supreme Court often issues opinions at a dizzying pace. Below is a very brief summary of the cases decided last month affecting local governments. When it comes to big cases, the Supreme Court’s last term was the quietest in recent memory. For local governments, though, the

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Supreme Court to Rule on Travel Ban

The court’s consideration of the revised executive order will essentially weigh the need to protect people from discrimination based on religion or country of origin with the president’s power in matters of national security. On its last opinion day of the term, the Supreme Court announced it would rule on the constitutionality of the Trump Administration’s

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Supreme Court to Consider Constitutionality of Partisan Gerrymandering

If the deciding justice finds that there is no clear way to determine constitutionality — and thus no clear way to establish laws against the practice — then the issue will continue to affect politics for the foreseeable future. In Gill v. Whitford the Supreme Court has agreed to decide whether and when it is

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Is the President’s Travel Ban Headed to the Supreme Court?

The Fourth Circuit concluded the revised travel ban likely violates the Establishment Clause, noting that its “text speaks with vague words of national security but in context drips with religious intolerance, animus and discrimination.” The Department of Justice (DOJ) has filed a brief asking the Supreme Court to review the Fourth Circuit’s recent decision temporarily preventing President Donald Trump’s

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The Attorney General Defined Sanctuary Cities. Here’s What You Need to Know.

On Monday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued the government’s first official definition of “sanctuary cities” and made it clear that President Trump’s power to cut off funding from local governments on the basis of immigration policy is limited to cities that “willfully refuse to comply” with a specific section of federal law. For the most

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Dueling Lawsuits Challenge and Defend Texas Sanctuary Jurisdictions Law

It is not just the president who wants to curtail sanctuary jurisdictions — states are getting in on the action, too. Unsurprisingly, local governments are pushing back. On May 7, 2017, Gov. Greg Abbott signed SB 4 into law in Texas. Among numerous other stipulations, it requires local governments to honor Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detainers,

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Supreme Court: Cities Can Proceed With Claims Against Banks for Discriminatory Lending

The Supreme Court recently ruled local governments have “standing” to bring Fair Housing Act (FHA) lawsuits against banks alleging discriminatory lending practices. The glass is more than half full after the Supreme Court’s ruling in Bank of America v. Miami — but not as full as local governments would like. The Supreme Court could have totally

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