Tag: Supreme Court

Cell Tower Siting “In Writing” Requirement: Not What it Seems?

In T-Mobile South v. City of Roswell the Supreme Court will decide whether a letter denying a cell tower construction application that doesn’t explain the reasons for the denial meets the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (TCA) “in writing” requirement. T-Mobile applied to construct a 108-foot cell tower in an area zoned single-family residential.  The City

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Supreme Court Decides “Good Neighbor Provision” Clean Air Act Case

Given the Supreme Court’s prominent role in deciding important issues of the day, it is easy to get caught up in the latest juicy Court mishap.  Justice Scalia erroneously depicted precedent in his dissent in EPA v. EME Homer City Generation, which had to be corrected. But don’t let that be the reason you read

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Time to Re-write Outdated Traffic Ordinances?

In Heien v. North Carolina, a police officer pulled over a car because he thought North Carolina law required that motor vehicles have two working brake lights.  It turns out the officer was wrong.  The North Carolina Court of Appeals concluded that state law requires motor vehicles to only have one working brake light. So

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Anonymous Tip: No Corroboration? No problem!

Does an anonymous, unverified tip of dangerous driving justify a traffic stop? Yes, says a divided Supreme Court. In Prado Navarette v. California, an anonymous 911 caller reported that a vehicle had run her off the road.  The Court held 5-4 that a police stop complied with the Fourth Amendment because, under the totality of

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Supreme Court’s Affirmative Action Ruling Likely to Affect Local Government

The Supreme Court’s recent affirmative action ruling should be viewed through the lens of public employment and contracts not just public universities. In Schuette v. Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action the Supreme Court held 6-2 that voters may by ballot prohibit affirmative action in public universities admission decisions.  While this case was limited to the

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Supreme Court Greenhouse Gas Case has Implications for Local Adaptation, Resilience Efforts

As the U.S. Supreme Court hears oral arguments today on a case that could have implications for the Administration’s plans to regulate greenhouse gas emissions, cities continue to seek federal policies and programs that will support their local climate adaptation and resilience efforts. The question in Utility Air Regulatory Group v. EPA is whether the

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A Term of Recurring Themes

Lisa Soronen is the Executive Director of the State and Local Legal Center and a regular contributor to CitiesSpeak. If you follow the Supreme Court’s docket, one theme from this term is unmistakable:  patent cases.  The Court has taken at least five patent cases (out of less than 70).  But patents don’t worry the State and Local

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NLC Supports Arkansas League before the Supreme Court

Lisa Soronen is the Executive Director of the State and Local Legal Center and a regular contributor to CitiesSpeak. To have a case before the United States Supreme Court is quite an honor for most lawyers, and Michael Mosley is no exception. On March 4th, Arkansas Municipal League Attorney Michael Mosley will argue a case

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NLC Joins “Rails-to-Trails” Supreme Court Brief

Lisa Soronen is the Executive Director of the State and Local Legal Center and a regular contributor to CitiesSpeak. Perhaps your city is fortunate and has extensive biking and recreational trails.  If so, have you ever wondered, where do bike paths come from? Many bike paths in the country come from abandoned railroad land grants or

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In Hot Pursuit of Qualified Immunity

Lisa Soronen is the Executive Director of the State and Local Legal Center and a regular contributor to CitiesSpeak. While a recent Washington Post article notes that the Supreme Court isn’t hearing as many cases as usual this winter, the Court has not been shy about taking qualified immunity cases.  Recently, the Court decided to

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