March 27, 2013 |
It may be surprising, but no state is required to have a law making possession of marijuana, or any drug, a crime. Therefore, any state can legalize some or all marijuana possession if it chooses. The federal government, if it chooses, can enforce the federal law against its possession and use, but it is up to each state to decide what to criminally prohibit, based on the 10th Amendment. This basic insight has been lost in the public discussion about whether the initiatives legalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana passed by Colorado and Washington voters in November are preempted by federal law. The two states will soon finalize regulations to implement those initiatives, including how to tax and regulate marijuana.
April 29, 1988 |
Federal regulators argued Thursday that a Delaware state law giving broad takeover protection to more than half of the nation's largest public companies violates the U.S. Constitution. In a friend-of-the-court brief filed in U.S. District Court in Delaware, the Securities and Exchange Commission argued that the state takeover law enacted in February frustrates the intent of federal law governing tender offers, a common method of purchasing corporate control.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 10, 2013 |
A decade ago, Gardena Police Capt. Tom Monson was surprised to discover that a $5,190 check had been mailed to his station from the Honorary Consulate of the Kingdom of Cambodia. Monson was unable to figure out what business the small police agency had with the government of Cambodia. Shortly afterward, Monson was presented with another vexing puzzle. His police department had recently purchased 173 bulletproof vests from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department - a lot, considering that the department had fewer than 100 officers.
June 17, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court agreed with the Obama administration Monday in yet another of its confrontations with Arizona, striking down a state law on voter registrations and ruling that states may not require new applicants to show proof of their citizenship. In a surprisingly lopsided 7-2 decision, the justices said the federal Motor Voter Act and its simple registration form sets the national standard for signing up new voters, and states are not free to add extra qualifications.
December 20, 2013 |
The U.S. District Court in Los Angeles has ended its oversight of a case involving Alhambra High and failure to comply with Title IX, the federal law regarding sex discrimination. The California Women's Law Center and Legal Aid Society-Employment Center brought the case, Cruz vs. Alhambra. Alhambra has since complied with terms of a settlement, building new softball fields and adding new teams for girls' athletics. "Alhambra High School's work in connection with this settlement shows that any high school in Californa can comply with Title IX, which has been law for over 40 years," said Elizabeth Kristen of the Legal Aid Society in a statement.
February 22, 2013 |
The Federal Trade Commission opened a potentially significant new front Friday in its efforts to protect consumers against data theft. The commission announced a settlement with mobile device manufacturer HTC America that requires the company to plug security holes in millions of smartphones and tablet computers, develop a comprehensive approach to data protection and undergo independent security assessments every other year. Federal law gives the commission the authority to go after "unfair" business practices that harm consumers, and it's used that authority increasingly in recent years to crack down on companies that don't safeguard the sensitive data they collect from customers.
November 16, 2010
Washington is gearing up to take a more active role in regulating Internet privacy, responding to growing public concern about the amount of personal information being collected and shared without users' knowledge. There may be a role for the federal government in promoting transparency and limiting unwanted disclosures, particularly those made to government agencies. But policymakers should focus on real harms, not imaginary ones, and remember that rapidly changing technology could quickly render their strictures obsolete.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 14, 2013 |
A long-running legal dispute over the use of a Hancock Park home as an Orthodox Jewish prayer house ended Wednesday with the city of Los Angeles agreeing to pay $950,000 in attorney fees and costs to settle the case. The Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously to pay lawyers representing Congregation Etz Chaim in the case involving a residential property at 3 rd Street and Highland Avenue. Synagogue leaders sued the city in 2010, challenging its denial of a conditional use permit to use the enlarged home as a religious sanctuary.
August 29, 2013 |
WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration announced Thursday a limited pullback on federal enforcement of marijuana, saying it will not interfere with new state laws that permit recreational use of marijuana. The Justice Department said it will not seek to veto new state laws in Colorado and Washington that legalize the recreational use of marijuana, and it will not bring federal prosecutions against dispensaries or businesses that sell small amounts of marijuana to adults. A department official stressed, however, that marijuana remains illegal under federal law, and that U.S. prosecutors will continue to aggressively enforce the law against those who sell marijuana to minors and to criminal gangs that are involved in drug trafficking.