Category: Legislation

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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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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In Congress, NLC Experts Discuss the State of America’s Cities

What is the state of America’s cities and towns? Where are our most successful and our most challenged communities? What should the federal government’s role in cities be — and is there a road map to urban success? On Wednesday, NLC Second Vice President Karen Freeman-Wilson, mayor, Gary, Indiana, and NLC Senior Executive Brooks Rainwater

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America’s Fight for Independence Has Always Been Local

Our country’s growing political tension between city leadership and state legislatures has long historic roots in America, NLC Director of Research Christiana McFarland writes this week in Route Fifty. Current issues ranging from municipal broadband to civil rights to the minimum wage have been involved — but the pattern is not new, says McFarland: “A

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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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Legislation Would Allow Tourists to Carry Concealed Weapons in Your City

Consider the following scenario: Tom, who lives in Arizona, plans to take a trip to New York City to see the sites, visit the Statue of Liberty, and walk through Central Park. In Arizona, he can carry a concealed handgun without a permit. When he visits New York City, he plans to bring his weapon

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New Legislation Would Make Local Police Officers Federal Agents

If the Stop Dangerous Sanctuary Cities Act passes, it could set a dangerous precedent that would allow the federal government to nationalize the police and limit local authority to manage their police departments. Local officials have historically been responsible for managing local police departments in the United States, and officials in more than 19,000 cities

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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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