Public Policy

  • July 6, 2015

    EchoStar Says Non-US Satellite Cos. Shouldn't Face FCC Fees

    EchoStar Satellite Operating Corp. on Monday told the FCC that Intelsat’s request that the agency assess regulatory fees on non-U.S. licensed satellite operators that have been granted U.S. market access was inconsistent with U.S. law, commission precedent and established multilateral trade agreements.

  • July 6, 2015

    Wis. Legislators Rip Talk Of $500M Bucks Arena Plan's Risk

    During a Wisconsin legislative hearing on Monday reviewing the latest funding plan proposed for the Milwaukee Bucks' $500 million arena project, several lawmakers blasted insinuations that the state would be on the hook for liabilities with the team's existing facility if the public-private plan is not approved. 

  • July 6, 2015

    FINRA Dangles Cooperation Carrot With Fine-Free Settlements

    The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority's decision Monday to not levy fines against three broker-dealers that allegedly overcharged certain mutual fund customers shows there can be extraordinary rewards for extraordinary cooperation, attorneys say, and that could entice others to come clean to the regulator about internal compliance problems they have discovered.

  • July 6, 2015

    Texas Couple Sues Over County's Marriage License Delay

    A Texas county issued its first marriage license to a same-sex couple Monday within hours of being sued for not complying with the U.S. Supreme Court’s Obergefell v. Hodges ruling, but still faces an allegation that the county clerk violated the U.S. Constitution and should pay the couple’s legal fees.

  • July 6, 2015

    Tighter Local Regulations Prompt Uber To Exit Fla. County

    Uber Technologies Inc. announced on Monday that it will be ending ride-hailing services in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and the surrounding county on July 31 as a result of recently heightened regulations on transportation network companies similar to those governing traditional taxi services.

  • July 6, 2015

    Enviros Sue DOI Over Mexican Gray Wolf Management

    The U.S. Department of Interior has been hit with a suit by a coalition of wildlife conservation groups in Arizona federal court over its new strategy for managing Mexican gray wolves reintroduced to the American Southwest.

  • July 6, 2015

    Schumer Wants Robocallers Subject To Prison Time

    Commercial robocallers could for the first time face criminal penalties for calling recipients without permission, according to a bill introduced last month by Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., which would impose up to 10 years in prison and increase the maximum fine per call to $20,000.

  • July 6, 2015

    Pittsburgh Sues Fiscal Board For $11M In Gambling Funds

    The city of Pittsburgh has filed a suit against the Intergovernmental Cooperation Authority for withholding $11.4 million in gambling revenues allegedly owed to the city, even though the authority has approved the city’s budgets for the past two fiscal years.

  • July 6, 2015

    Fed. Circ. Urged To Revisit Controversial Duty Payouts

    A U.S. anti-friction bearings maker on Monday called for the Federal Circuit to take another look at the constitutionality of an expired law that distributed anti-dumping duties on directly afflicted producers, asserting that the court's 2009 decision supporting the process ought to be overturned.

  • July 6, 2015

    FDIC, Fed Release Public Resolution Plans For 12 Big Banks

    Federal banking regulators on Monday released the public sections of so-called living wills submitted last week by 12 of the world’s largest banks that provide an outline of how the institutions can be taken apart should they fail.

  • July 6, 2015

    5 Real Estate Regs Calif. Developers Are Watching

    California developers and real estate investors are tracking the impact of a variety of changes that took effect or were introduced in the first six months of 2015 and closely monitoring proposed changes to the state’s property tax assessment law. Here, Law360 looks at five real estate-related areas lawyers and developers are watching in the second half of 2015.

  • July 6, 2015

    Covington Brings On Legislative Expert From White House

    Covington & Burling LLP said last week that it had added an Obama administration official to its ranks with Layth Elhassani, a former special assistant to President Barack Obama in the White House's legislative affairs office.

  • July 6, 2015

    Synagro Can't Dodge Challenge To Sewage Sludge Permits

    Pennsylvania’s Environmental Hearing Board has refused to limit a challenge to permits allowing a Synagro Technologies Inc. unit to use sewage sludge as fertilizer on several farms in the state, ruling that a hearing on the merits is necessary to weigh environmental claims from concerned residents.

  • July 6, 2015

    Carmakers Blast Qualcomm's Spectrum-Sharing Proposal

    A coalition of some of the world’s largest automakers has lambasted revisions to a Federal Communications Commission rule proposed by Qualcomm Inc. that would allow certain unlicensed wireless devices to operate in the same spectrum as vehicle-to-vehicle systems, saying it would cause harmful interference with the soon-to-be-released vehicle safety technology.

  • July 6, 2015

    USPTO Chief Says Congress On Right Track With Patent Bill

    With the House of Representatives set to consider a bill aimed at curbing abusive patent lawsuits this month, the director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office said Monday that the legislation is "definitely heading in the right direction" and that she hopes it will become law this year.

  • July 6, 2015

    FCC Office Closures Would Boost Pirate Radio, NY Sens. Say

    New York’s U.S. senators have asked Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler to reconsider closing seven of the agency’s 22 field offices, saying the move would hurt efforts to crack down on unlicensed radio operators.

  • July 6, 2015

    European Central Bank Tightens Loans To Greek Banks

    The European Central Bank on Monday increased collateral requirements on emergency aid to Greek banks, increasing the pressure on the country’s government just a day after voters there rejected further austerity measures that international creditors had been demanding.

  • July 6, 2015

    3rd Circ. Upholds EPA's Chesapeake Bay Pollution Limits

    The Third Circuit upheld a set of U.S. Environmental Protection Agency pollution restrictions for the Chesapeake Bay watershed on Monday, rejecting arguments from agriculture and construction groups that the agency lacked authority to implement a program coordinating outflows in multiple states.

  • July 6, 2015

    NY Closes Loan Interest Rate Loophole For Service Members

    New York state regulators on Monday closed a loophole in state interest rate caps that allowed lenders to offer high-interest-rate loans to some members of the military stationed in the state.

  • July 6, 2015

    Wyo. Tribe's Suit Over ACA Mandate Tossed

    A Wyoming federal judge on Thursday dismissed the Northern Arapaho tribe's suit alleging that it shouldn’t be subject to the Affordable Care Act's large employer mandate, concluding that because the mandate is considered a tax, the suit is barred under federal laws precluding such claims.

Expert Analysis

  • What To Know About The 'Waters Of The United States' Rule

    Andrea M. Hogan

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' final rule fleshing out the jurisdictional definition and limits of "waters of the United States" will likely face several legislative and legal challenges, including arguments that it exceeds the bounds of the Constitution’s Commerce Clause, exceeds the limits of the Clean Water Act and that it is inconsistent with the U.S. Supreme Court’s interpretation of... (continued)

  • US And EU Dynamics And The Future Of Sanctions On Russia

    Eytan Fisch

    Since the outbreak of the Ukraine crisis the United States and the European Union have sought to align their sanctions responses against Russia in the most closely coordinated sanctions effort in recent memory. However, the matter of EU support for additional sanctions remains an open question and the U.S. government’s willingness to impose strong new sanctions without the partnership of the EU may be tested, says Eytan Fisch of Sk... (continued)

  • The Next Step Forward In Disability Rights Law

    Ahaviah Glaser

    Despite the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act 25 years ago, even a cursory look at independent, community-based living for the disabled reveals that significant barriers remain. Passage of the Transition to Independence Act would be a game-changer, says Ahaviah Glaser of Cozen O'Connor PC.

  • This Week In Congress: Post July 4 Tumult

    Richard A. Hertling

    The House and Senate return from the Independence Day recess this week facing a crowded July agenda. Richard Hertling and Kaitlyn McClure of Covington & Burling LLP map the issues, ranging from national transportation and infrastructure funding to the Export-Import Bank's lapsed charter to the slew of fiscal year 2016 spending bills.

  • Could Chief Justice Roberts Have Concurred In Obergefell?

    Janice Mock

    Chief Justice John Roberts' dissenting argument in Obergefell v. Hodges misses the point entirely. If the U.S. Supreme Court has any rights at all, such rights surely include the ability to ensure that states don’t create laws — in Obergefell, bans on same-sex marriage — that abridge a citizen’s right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, says Janice Mock of Nossaman LLP.

  • Haze Of Uncertainty Surrounds EPA Vapor Intrusion Rules

    Donald D. Anderson

    Thirteen years after releasing an initial draft and two years after issuing a draft for public comment, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency at last released its final vapor intrusion guidance document, though how the guidance will be used — or misused — in environmental and tort litigation is uncertain, say attorneys at McGuireWoods LLP.

  • Utah Appeals Court Upholds Construction Statute Of Repose

    Adam T. Mow

    Willis v. DeWitt is a substantial victory for design professionals and contractors working in Utah as it provides certainty on when contract-based claims against them can be made and means that potential plaintiffs cannot rely on their own ignorance to extend the period for bringing a claim, says Adam Mow at Jones Waldo Holbrook & McDonough PC.

  • Cybersecurity For Brokers: 'Only The Paranoid Survive'

    Brian L. Rubin

    Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water and have a quiet summer, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Commissioner Luis Aguilar has hoisted the warning flags — targeting a number of cyber-related problems facing the securities industry, say Brian Rubin and Charlie Kruly of Sutherland Asbill & Brennan LLP.

  • HOA Superpriority Litigation Intensifies In Nevada

    Robin Perkins

    For the last three years, Nevada lenders and homeowners’ associations have been battling over the interpretation of Nevada’s version of the Uniform Common Interest Ownership Act, which provides a limited superpriority lien for HOAs to recover past due assessments. Senate Bill 306 — which substantially revised the statute and these new provisions — will likely diminish investor interest in the HOA foreclosure market, say attorneys a... (continued)

  • Did 'America's Sexiest Man' Almost Doom The ACA?

    Kim Wilcoxon

    Although former Republican Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown didn't cast the deciding vote in the U.S. Supreme Court's 5-4 ruling in King v. Burwell, the one-time Cosmopolitan magazine pick for "America's Sexiest Man" played a significant role in the legal trials and tribulations of the Affordable Care Act, says Kim Wilcoxon of Thompson Hine LLP.