Public Policy

  • April 28, 2017

    NSA To Stop Collecting Emails About Foreign Targets

    The National Security Agency is halting a controversial surveillance method that had allowed it to scoop up internet communications that merely mention a foreign intelligence target, including messages from Americans who aren’t under investigation, the agency said Friday.

  • April 28, 2017

    Trump's Remarks Again Haunt Him In Sanctuary City Ruling

    In blocking an executive order provision aimed at barring sanctuary cities from receiving federal funds, a judge once again pointed to President Donald Trump’s own past statements, continuing a pattern of the president’s rhetorical flourishes showing up to bite him in court.

  • April 28, 2017

    Chicago Schools Lose Bid To Halt Payments In Funding Suit

    Mayor Rahm Emanuel vowed that Chicago Public Schools would not close three weeks early, as the district had threatened, as a result of a loss in Cook County Court on Friday in a suit filed against Gov. Bruce Rauner that alleges the state's school funding formula discriminates against the majority-minority Chicago school system.

  • April 28, 2017

    Trump Puts Trade Agreement 'Abuses' In The Crosshairs

    The Trump administration continued its sweeping audit of U.S. trade policy on Friday by teeing up a new investigation that will focus on the “violations and abuses” currently plaguing U.S. free trade and investment agreements — including the World Trade Organization.

  • April 28, 2017

    ISPs Say Internet Will Remain Open After FCC Regs Rollback

    FCC Chairman Ajit Pai’s announcement that he wants to open a probe regarding broadband’s classification as a Title II common carrier has drawn the applause of internet service providers, including AT&T, Comcast and Verizon, and the ire of internet trade groups this week.

  • April 28, 2017

    FCC’s Net Neutrality Plan Sets Up Repeal Without Replace

    Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai’s proposal to undo the reclassification of broadband as a utility leaves open-ended how, or if, the FCC will continue to compel broadband providers to follow net neutrality principles, experts say, with some questioning Pai’s desire to set rules of the road.

  • April 28, 2017

    FCC's Clyburn Pushes Help For Independent Programmers

    Federal Communications Commissioner Mignon Clyburn on Thursday called for the FCC to move forward with a final order to boost independent programmers by limiting certain provisions in agreements between them and pay-TV providers.

  • April 28, 2017

    Agency Vacancies Threaten Trump Rollback Of Energy Regs

    President Donald Trump's offshore drilling executive order inked Friday is the latest directive calling for the review and rollback of energy and environmental regulations crafted by the Obama administration, but former government officials say Trump's efforts will be compromised by dozens of vacancies in politically appointed positions at the agencies responsible for carrying out his orders.

  • April 28, 2017

    Trump Exec. Order Seeks To Expand Offshore Drilling

    President Donald Trump on Friday signed an executive order that directs the U.S. Department of the Interior to review his predecessor’s restrictions on offshore oil and gas drilling, declaring that America is better when it takes full advantage of its natural resources.

  • April 28, 2017

    No EIS Required For USDA Role In Oregon's Wolf Program

    The U.S. Department of Agriculture escaped a lawsuit filed by conservationists over wolf removal in Oregon after a federal judge ruled Thursday the agency did not have to conduct an environmental impact statement before it killed two wolves at the state's request.

  • April 28, 2017

    DOT Raises Fines For Pipeline Safety Violations

    Entities that violate federal pipeline safety laws will face new, increased fines of $209,002 for each day the violation continues, or more than $2 million for a related series of violations, under revised maximum civil penalties that the U.S. Department of Transportation announced on Thursday.

  • April 28, 2017

    Hobby Lobby Moots Co.'s Contraception Rule Case: 7th Circ.

    The Seventh Circuit on Friday vacated an injunction blocking the Affordable Care Act’s pre-Hobby Lobby contraceptive mandate for for-profit employers, noting the grounds for such relief were mooted when Congress amended the ACA to shield religious beliefs after the high court ruled on the case.

  • April 28, 2017

    FERC Commissioner Honorable Won't Seek New Term

    Federal Energy Regulatory Commissioner Colette Honorable will not seek another term when her current one expires at the end of June, she announced Friday, a move that could leave the already quorumless agency with just one commissioner.

  • April 28, 2017

    High Court Urged To Reverse 6th Circ.'s Waters Of US Ruling

    Several industry groups, states and environmental organizations on Thursday asked the U.S. Supreme Court to reverse the Sixth Circuit’s ruling that it has sole jurisdiction to hear challenges to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s rule clarifying its ability to issue permits under the Clean Water Act.

  • April 28, 2017

    Trump’s Corporate Tax Reform Poised To Fuel More M&A

    The Trump administration rolled out an early outline for corporate tax reform recently, suggesting that a steep rate reduction and an incentive to repatriate offshore funds are in the works, changes that are expected to give companies access to more capital to do deals, experts say.

  • April 28, 2017

    CSX Dodges Fines Over Ohio Blocked-Crossing Law

    The city of Defiance, Ohio, can’t fine CSX Transportation Inc. for blocking public roadways because the state law it's relying on is preempted by the Interstate Commerce Commission Termination Act, an Ohio federal judge ruled Friday.

  • April 28, 2017

    DHS Policy Limits Privacy Rights Of Foreigners In US

    The Department of Homeland Security issued new policy guidance Thursday that limits the privacy rights of immigrants and nonimmigrant foreigners in light of President Donald Trump's executive order excluding anyone other than U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents from the protections of the Privacy Act.

  • April 28, 2017

    Senators Revive Bill To Speed Up Generic Drug Approval

    A bipartisan group of U.S. senators on Thursday revived the CREATES Act, a bill aimed at lowering drug prices by streamlining the process to get generic drugs on the market.

  • April 28, 2017

    Ga. Law Aims To Slash Funds For Sanctuary Campuses

    As part of a growing movement against so-called sanctuary campuses across several states, Georgia will slash funding to any private university protecting unauthorized immigrants, according to a law signed Thursday by Republican Gov. Nathan Deal.

  • April 28, 2017

    OCC Chief Says Fintech Charter Fight May Stifle Innovation

    U.S. Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry on Friday defended his agency’s proposal to grant special banking charters to financial technology firms, and said that critics of the move could be putting consumers at risk by not adapting to changes in the financial services industry.

Expert Analysis

  • Why Medical Marijuana Delivery May Soon Be Legal In LA

    Michael Rosenblum

    California has authorized licensed dispensaries to deliver medical marijuana to qualified patients, but allows municipalities to ban such deliveries. San Jose and other cities have recently lifted their delivery prohibitions. Los Angeles retains its ban, but a recently passed ballot measure and shifting public sentiment suggest that this may change in the coming months, says Michael Rosenblum of Thompson Coburn LLP.

  • Chatting With Ex-Fed. Circ. Chief About Patent System 'Mess'

    Eli Mazour

    Former Federal Circuit Chief Judge Paul Michel, who retired in 2010, recently sat down for an interview with me. He urged immediate action by Congress to fix patent eligibility problems and even more immediate action by the Trump administration to fix the Patent Trial and Appeal Board proceedings, says Eli Mazour of Harrity & Harrity LLP.

  • CMS Final Rule Does Not Answer Insurers' Biggest Questions

    Jeremy Earl

    The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services recently released a final rule intended to stabilize exchange markets for 2018. However, the rule does not resolve ongoing uncertainty regarding cost-sharing reduction funding, among other concerns, and this uncertainty will likely overshadow any stabilizing effects, say attorneys with McDermott Will & Emery LLP.

  • NYPSC Shakes Up Net Metering Projects In New York State

    Peter Trimarchi

    The New York Public Service Commission recently issued an order creating a new means of compensating renewable energy projects connected to the state’s electric grid. By replacing the net metering system with a new, more complex scheme for project valuation, the order will quickly change the landscape of renewable energy development and financing in New York, says Peter Trimarchi of Nixon Peabody LLP.

  • The Mediator’s Proposal As A Tool For Litigants

    Dennis Klein

    Mediators’ proposals, which call for an unconditional and confidential acceptance or rejection, are resolving high-value disputes on a regular basis. Dennis Klein of Critical Matter Mediation examines why this is happening and the tactical implications for litigants in anticipating that a mediator’s proposal could resolve litigation.

  • Tribal Self-Governance Under Trump: A Common Goal

    Venus McGhee Prince

    Today, tribes' unwavering resolve to assume control over a greater number of programs traditionally provided by the federal government may in fact reflect the zeitgeist of the Trump administration. Tribes must educate a new, not-yet-appointed cadre of federal officials on how tribal self-governance can create economic growth not only in Indian country but in the surrounding communities as well, say Venus McGhee Prince and Claire Ne... (continued)

  • 100 Days Of FCPA Under Trump: 10 Takeaways

    Meghan Hansen

    Since the presidential election, there has been uncertainty about the future of Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement. The Trump administration's first 100 days have given some clues, say Meghan Hansen and Carolyn Wald of Latham & Watkins LLP.

  • Expectations After The Trump Administration's First 100 Days

    Jim Flood

    In its first 100 days, the Trump administration has had mixed results and may be behind where it wants to be. The biggest threat to President Donald Trump’s domestic policy agenda beyond the first 100 days is the difficulty of reconciling the Freedom Caucus Republicans, moderate Republicans and Democrats, say Jim Flood and Cari Stinebower of Crowell & Moring LLP.

  • How Wireless Carriers Defend Consumers From Spam Texts

    Anush Emelianova

    Companies like Twilio have argued that the Federal Communications Commission should regulate text messages under the open internet rules, meaning that texts from consumers and businesses can't be filtered without notice. Wireless carriers claim that such a change would hurt consumers, and Chairman Ajit Pai is likely to protect consumers by siding with the carriers, say Phyllis Sumner and Anush Emelianova of King & Spalding LLP.

  • A Do-Over: Takeaways From Florida Court's Ober Revisit

    Paul Rush

    A Florida state court's recent reversal of its own 2016 decision in Ober v. Town of Lauderdale-By-The-Sea affirms the long-standing interpretation of Florida’s lis pendens statute. However, lenders should be on alert, for this ruling may not be the end of the road for Ober, says Paul Rush of Trenam Law.