Category: Legislation

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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The House Health Care Plan: What City Leaders Need to Know

Yesterday, the U.S. House of Representatives narrowly voted to approve the GOP plan to reform the Affordable Care Act (ACA).  While the first attempt to pass the reform package, the American Health Care Act (AHCA), was unsuccessful last month, the Administration and House leadership were able to amass a 217-213 victory. All 193 Democrats opposed

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Seventh Circuit Holds Employees May Bring Sexual Orientation Employment Discrimination Claims

The Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals’ ruling in Hively v. Ivy Tech provides a wider interpretation of nondiscrimination law. The Seventh Circuit Court has become the first federal circuit court of appeals to rule that employees may bring sexual orientation discrimination claims under Title VII. Hively v. Ivy Tech Community College directly affects state

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Mayor Sal Panto Testifies for Brownfields Redevelopment Funding

“Turning polluted properties back into productive real estate helps us create jobs in distressed communities while simultaneously improving public health and safety.” On Tuesday, Mayor Sal Panto of Easton, Pa., testified before the U.S. House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee’s Environment Subcommittee to advocate for brownfields redevelopment funding. Mayor Panto, Chair of the NLC

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Cities Are Fighting to Close the Pay Gap – But States Are Standing in the Way

NLC Research Director Christy McFarland discusses how state preemption of local authority may be adding to the gender wage gap. The full version of this post can be found on Route Fifty. Tuesday – dubbed Equal Pay Day – symbolizes roughly how many days into the new year that women must work to earn what men

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Local Governments Sue Over Sanctuary Jurisdictions Executive Order

The executive order is under litigation – but how worried should cities be that the president will actually take away money from sanctuary jurisdictions in the near future? Five days after assuming office, President Donald Trump signed an executive order threatening to take away federal funding from so-called sanctuary jurisdictions. The executive order leaves it

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Why the City of New Orleans Just Ended Cash Bail for Low-Risk Crimes

A new policy promises to save the city money and enable the court to tailor conditions to an individual rather than relying on a person’s ability to pay. In the past, low-income defendants who were charged with minor municipal offenses in New Orleans faced a quagmire. People with charges such as loitering or public intoxication

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Update: The Gorsuch Confirmation Hearings

While federalism was rarely discussed, and preemption wasn’t discussed at all, one particular issue of interest to local governments was explored at length. Confirmation hearings generally follow a predictable course, and Judge Neil Gorsuch’s hearings have been no exception. In most cases, senators not aligned with the president’s political party ask the nominee pointed questions

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Supreme Court Will Not Decide Transgender Bathroom Case

The case revolves around the interpretation of a federal regulation that bans discrimination “on the basis of sex” in schools that receive federal money. The legal question is whether it can also ban discrimination based on gender identity. The Supreme Court will not decide – at least not this term – whether transgender students have

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