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Public Policy

  • October 17, 2018

    Pa. Exceeded Legal Authority With Fracking Rules, Panel Told

    Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection overstepped its regulatory authority by imposing rules on hydraulic fracturing that went beyond what the state allowed in its oil and gas law, an attorney for the Marcellus Shale Coalition argued before the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania on Wednesday.

  • October 17, 2018

    Top House Armed Services Dem Rips Trump Coal Export Plan

    The U.S. House Armed Services Committee’s senior Democrat attacked President Donald Trump's reported proposal to use military bases to export coal from the West Coast to Asia, saying it would make an end run around environmental regulations and could threaten military readiness.

  • October 17, 2018

    FSOC Pulls SIFI Tag From Prudential, Last Nonbank To Have It

    The Financial Stability Oversight Council said Wednesday that it has decided to rescind insurer Prudential Financial Inc.’s designation as a systemically important financial institution, freeing it from enhanced regulatory supervision and leaving no nonbank financial firms classified as “too big to fail.”

  • October 17, 2018

    DOJ Antitrust Chief Cautions Against Punishing Big Data

    Makan Delrahim, the chief for the Justice Department's Antitrust Division, cautioned Wednesday against treating big data as automatically anti-competitive, arguing that case-by-case antitrust scrutiny of actions by major online platforms like Google and Facebook is required because big data also offers major procompetitive benefits.

  • October 17, 2018

    Gov't Ready For Manafort Sentencing On Some Counts

    Federal prosecutors on Wednesday said they are ready to schedule a sentencing hearing for President Donald Trump's former campaign Chairman Paul Manafort, but said they want to keep open their option to retry Manafort on 10 counts that left a Virginia federal jury deadlocked in August.

  • October 17, 2018

    9th Circ. Asked To Hold ICWA Ruling For High Court Appeal

    Adoptive parents and their children have urged the Ninth Circuit to put a hold on its decision to toss a proposed class action claiming parts of the Indian Child Welfare Act are unconstitutional, saying their planned appeal will detail several ways the circuit court's ruling diverged from U.S. Supreme Court precedent.

  • October 17, 2018

    Zoning Changes Doom NYC Nursing Home Permit, Court Says

    A New York appeals court on Tuesday rescinded a permit approved by the New York City Department of Buildings for the construction of a nursing home on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, finding that 2011 amendments to city zoning regulations cause the project to run afoul of certain open space requirements.

  • October 17, 2018

    Lieff Cabraser, Others Want $90M In State Farm Judge Case

    Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein LLP, Clifford Law Offices PC and several other firms have asked for $90 million in fees and expenses for their work representing a class of State Farm customers who settled claims the insurance giant rigged an Illinois judicial election for $250 million.

  • October 17, 2018

    EPA's Science Review, Truck Emissions Rules On Back Burner

    The Trump administration has indicated it will delay the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's controversial proposal to avoid rulemaking based on research that isn't publicly available and indefinitely shelve the EPA's repeal of Obama-era emissions standards for heavy-duty trucks outfitted with engines from older trucks.

  • October 17, 2018

    Arpaio Hits NYT With $147.5M Defamation Suit Over Column

    Former Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio sued The New York Times for defamation in D.C. federal court Tuesday, alleging that an opinion column that referred to him as a "truly sadistic man" and claimed he abused immigrant detainees has harmed his reputation as well as his 2020 Senate chances.

  • October 17, 2018

    Chief Justice Defends Court's Integrity After Kavanaugh Row

    Alluding to the recent political firestorm surrounding Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s monthslong nomination process, Chief Justice John Roberts tried to assure the public that the U.S. Supreme Court would remain an independent and collegial institution.

  • October 16, 2018

    Energy Exec Who Hired Percoco's Wife Gets 14 Months

    Energy executive Peter Galbraith Kelly Jr., who struck a plea deal after a jury split on charges that he bribed Joseph Percoco by giving his wife a "low-show" job, was sentenced to 14 months behind bars on Tuesday in a decision meant to send a warning to lobbyists across the country.

  • October 16, 2018

    DC Investigations Lawyer To Be New White House Counsel

    President Donald Trump has selected Pat A. Cipollone to replace Don McGahn as White House counsel, the president told reporters Tuesday, bringing in a well-known Washington litigator as his new top lawyer as the special counsel investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election continues unabated.

  • October 16, 2018

    FCC Commissioners Support Plan To Reopen 5.9 GHz Rules

    FCC Commissioners Jessica Rosenworcel and Michael O’Rielly offered bipartisan support Tuesday for a trade association’s plan that would rethink the allocation of the 5.9 GHz spectrum band for automotive safety features and use it to power Wi-Fi and unlicensed devices.

  • October 16, 2018

    San Jacinto River Authority Claims Immunity In Takings Row

    Houston-area homeowners who allege that the San Jacinto River Authority’s actions that flooded their property in the wake of Hurricane Harvey were unconstitutional “takings” have not done enough to waive governmental immunity, the agency told a Texas appellate panel in oral arguments Tuesday.

  • October 16, 2018

    States Say Indian Child Welfare Act Must Be Blocked

    Texas, Indiana and Louisiana and several foster families have urged a Texas federal judge to reject four tribes' request to put a hold on a recent decision that found the Indian Child Welfare Act unconstitutional, saying that the ruling is likely to stand and that a stay would leave many children “in legal limbo” until appeals in the case are over.

  • October 16, 2018

    9th Circ. Won't Rethink Indian Child Welfare Act Ruling

    The full Ninth Circuit has declined to rethink tossing a proposed class action alleging that portions of the Indian Child Welfare Act are discriminatory and unconstitutional, standing by its decision that the dispute lodged by four children and their adoptive parents is moot because the kids were successfully adopted.

  • October 16, 2018

    DOD Urged To Boost Oversight Of Afghan Defense Equipment

    The United States has spent billions of dollars since 2002 to provide and maintain equipment for Afghan security forces, but the U.S. Department of Defense lacks the ability to effectively track how much of this equipment is being maintained and used, according to a watchdog report.

  • October 16, 2018

    Winning 5G Race Is 'Worthless Exercise,' Clyburn Says

    Former FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn called winning the proverbial race to 5G a “worthless exercise” at an American University event Tuesday, saying that whether the nation is first to roll out next-generation mobile services doesn’t matter as much as implementing the services wisely.

  • October 16, 2018

    Sens. Urge FTC To Take Harder Line On 'Made In USA' Labels

    Three Senate Democrats have sent a letter to the Federal Trade Commission urging it to fully enforce its “Made in the USA” labeling standards in the wake of recent agency decisions to settle with companies that allegedly marketed foreign-made goods as domestically produced.

Expert Analysis

  • Q&A

    Back To School: BC's Kent Greenfield Talks Corporate Law

    Kent Greenfield

    In this series featuring law school luminaries, Boston College Law School professor Kent Greenfield reflects on his corporate law theories, his legal battle with the Pentagon over free speech and gay rights, and important constitutional law issues to watch out for.

  • Looking Past The Issue Of Price Transparency In Health Care

    Mark Waxman

    Many describe "price transparency" as the solution to what is wrong with health care, but the reality may well be that transparency is only a stepping stone to actual price controls. Recent events illustrate the range of avenues being pursued as legislators address the cost of health care, say Mark Waxman and Kristin Jenkins of Foley & Lardner LLP​​​​​​​.

  • NJ Order Gives Offshore Wind A Firmer Footing

    H. David Gold

    Earlier this year, New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy signed legislation strengthening the state's offshore wind power goals. Last month, his administration issued the largest offshore wind energy solicitation of any state to date, giving the industry a strong foundation in New Jersey, say attorneys at WilmerHale.

  • 10 Years Of Inaction On US-Flag Cargo Preference

    Jeff Vogel

    The 2009 National Defense Authorization Act granted the U.S. Maritime Administration increased authority to enforce the requirement that at least half of government-impelled cargoes be carried on U.S.-flag vessels. But in the intervening decade, regulatory efforts toward this goal have failed. If Congress wishes to preserve the U.S.-flag fleet, it must take further action, says Jeff Vogel of Cozen O’Connor.

  • What New Bank Charters Mean For Fintech

    Mark Nuccio

    The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency's recently announced national bank charters for financial technology companies hold the promise of delivering lower costs and improved efficiencies in a safe environment that protects consumers, say attorneys at Ropes & Gray LLP.

  • Schools Must Prepare For Title IX Changes

    Josh Whitlock

    Recently leaked draft revisions to regulations governing schools' handling of sexual misconduct allegations suggest that the new regulations would have a significant impact on schools’ obligations and activities in this area. Educational institutions should start planning now for possible changes, says Josh Whitlock of Parker Poe Adams & Bernstein LLP.

  • How FIRRMA Changes The Game For Tech Cos. And Investors

    Steven Croley

    The Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernization Act, signed into law in August, will significantly alter how the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States conducts its work. Emerging technology companies, and their prospective investors, must be mindful of whether investments are now subject to CFIUS jurisdiction, say attorneys at Latham & Watkins LLP.

  • Kavanaugh Cannot Be Compelled To Recuse Himself

    Donald Scarinci

    Whether Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s prior statements may be grounds for disqualification when it comes to judging certain cases is debatable, but there are no specific recusal guidelines for the U.S. Supreme Court. The justices themselves don’t even agree on where to draw the line when it comes to perceived political bias, says Donald Scarinci, a founding partner of Scarinci Hollenbeck LLC.

  • Justices Will Side With Federal Retirees In W.Va. Tax Case

    Edward Zelinsky

    The U.S. Supreme Court will decide this term whether the state of West Virginia can tax a federal employee's retirement income if the retirement income of certain state retirees is entirely tax exempt. Professor Edward Zelinsky of Cardozo School of Law predicts the high court will hold that state and federal retirees must be granted the same exemptions.

  • Knowledge Management: An Unsung Hero Of Legal Innovation

    Rob MacAdam

    As technology evolves, law firms are increasingly looking for ways to improve communication, transparency and service for their clients. Firms should put knowledge management at the core of their value proposition to create a competitive advantage, says Rob MacAdam at HighQ.