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Attorney General's Memorandum on Federal Marijuana Enforcement: Possible Impacts

Description: This report discusses Attorney General Jeff Sessions' memorandum on federal marijuana enforcement policy sent to all U.S. Attorneys that immediately rescinds guidance documents specific to marijuana enforcement. It provides background on the memorandum, the relevant regulations, and implications of withdrawing previous guidance.
Date: January 10, 2018
Creator: Garvey, Todd & Yeh, Brian T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Facing the FAST Act: Abortion and Free Speech (Part 1)

Description: First part of a report regarding the Supreme Court case: "National Institute of Family and Life Advocates (NIFLA) v. Becerra;" it involves a California state law that requires certain pregnancy centers to distribute particular information to clients which they contend violates their free speech rights. This report provides an overview of the challenged law, followed by an analysis of how the Supreme Court might categorize the speech at issue.
Date: January 10, 2018
Creator: Killion, Victoria L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Facing the FAST Act: Abortion and Free Speech (Part 2)

Description: Second part of a report regarding the Supreme Court case: "National Institute of Family and Life Advocates (NIFLA) v. Becerra;" it involves a California state law that requires certain pregnancy centers to distribute particular information to clients which they contend violates their free speech rights. This report discusses the potential implications of any Supreme Court decision in "NIFLA" for First Amendment jurisprudence and legislatures seeking to regulate in this area.
Date: January 10, 2018
Creator: Killion, Victoria L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Supreme Court to Hear Voter Roll Case: What are the Implications?

Description: This report discusses the Supreme Court case of "Husted v. Phillip Randolph Institute," which charges the state of Ohio with violating the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA) through their secondary voter registration maintenance program which removes people from the voter rolls due to inactivity. It discusses a brief history of the case before its coming to the Supreme Court and possible implications of the decision.
Date: January 9, 2018
Creator: Whitaker, L. Paige
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Smart Toys and the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998

Description: This report discusses "smart toys" for children that use the internet to interact with the user. It outlines various security concerns regarding the collection and use of information about children, and whether these toys are governed by the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998.
Date: January 8, 2018
Creator: Stevens, Gina
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

EPA Proposes to Repeal the Clean Power Plan

Description: This report is an update of an earlier report regarding the EPA's (Environmental Protection Ageny's) proposed repeal of the Clean Power Plan, which was intended to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. On Dec. 28, 2017 the EPA issued an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) seeking input on creating a new replacement regulation for the previous Clean Power Plan.
Date: January 4, 2018
Creator: Tsang, Linda
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Supreme Court Declines to Review Ninth Circuit Court Decision Applying Federal Reserved Water Rights Doctrine to Groundwater

Description: This report discusses the case of "Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians v. Coachella Valley Water District" relating to groundwater water rights on federal lands. The Supreme Court declined to hear the case in July 2017.
Date: December 21, 2017
Creator: Wyatt, Alexandra M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Application of the "One Central Reason: Standard in Asylum and Withholding of Removal Cases

Description: This report discusses asylum and withholding of removal immigration cases, and the application of the "one central reason" rule which dictates that asylum claimants demonstrate that an approved persecution grounds is one of the central reason they are claiming asylum. The same standard has been used in withholding of removal claim cases but a recent ruling by the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court stated that the "one central reason" rule does not apply to withholding of removal cases creating a split in opinion among courts.
Date: December 18, 2017
Creator: Smith, Hillel R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Procurement Law and Natural Disasters

Description: This report discusses the federal procurement laws regarding federal agencies hiring contractors for disaster recovery work and the encouragement to use local contractors for the work to help the local economy recover.
Date: December 14, 2017
Creator: Carpenter, David H. & Lunder, Ericka K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Suing Subway: When Does a Class Action Settlement Benefit Only the Lawyers

Description: This report explores the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit's "Subway" ruling which rejected a proposed settlement of a class-action suit brought against Subway for falsely advertising the length of their sandwiches; the settlement required them to inspect sandwich lengths and pay the plaintiff's attorney fees, but it only benefited the lawyers and not consumers. The report discusses the case's broader significance to class action litigation, tort reform, and consumer rights.
Date: December 12, 2017
Creator: Lewis, Kevin M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Supreme Court Declines to Take Up Military Commission Challenges-Al Bahlul and Al-Nashiri

Description: This report discusses the Supreme Court's rejection of cases submitted by two detainees at Guantanamo Bay (Ali Hamza Ahmad Suliman al Bahlul & Abd Al-Rahim Hussein Al-Nashiri) challenging the current military commission system under the Military Commissions Act (MCA). It discusses the merits of the cases, the various legal proceedings regarding them, and case law related to the issue.
Date: December 12, 2017
Creator: Elsea, Jennifer K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Public Sector Union Dues: Grappling with Fixed Stars and Stare Decisis (Part 1)

Description: First part of a report discussing the upcoming Supreme Court case of "Janus v. American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees Council," concerning whether requiring non-union member employees is constitutional. It provides general background on an earlier case regarding the issue "Abood v. Detroit Board of Education" and the case law leading up to "Janus."
Date: December 4, 2017
Creator: Killion, Victoria L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Public Sector Union Dues: Grappling with Fixed Stars and Stare Decisis (Part 2)

Description: Second part of a report discussing the upcoming Supreme Court case of "Janus v. American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees Council," concerning whether requiring non-union member employees is constitutional. It begins with a brief summary of the parties' arguments, highlights some key statements from the prior decisions of Justice Gorsuch (who is likely to be a critical voice), and finally explores the potential implications of the decision.
Date: December 4, 2017
Creator: Killion, Victoria L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Changes to "Too Big to Fail" Treasury Recommends Revisions to Dodd-Frank SIFI Designation Process for Non-Banks (Part 1)

Description: First part of a report discussing the Treasury Department's recent report recommending revisions to the Financial Stability Oversight Council's (FSOC's) process for designating non-bank financial institutions as "systematically important financial institutions (SIFI's) also known as "Too Big to Fail" institutions. This part provides general background on the SIFI designation process
Date: December 1, 2017
Creator: Sykes, Jay B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Changes to "Too Big to Fail" Treasury Recommends Revisions to Dodd-Frank SIFI Designation Process for Non-Banks (Part 2)

Description: Second part of a report discussing the Treasury Department's recent report recommending revisions to the Financial Stability Oversight Council's (FSOC's) process for designating non-bank financial institutions as "systematically important financial institutions (SIFI's) also known as "Too Big to Fail" institutions. This part discusses the legal debate over the designation process, the Treasury Department's recommended changes for the process, and how those changes may affect the Senate's consideration of the Financial CHOICE Act of 2017 (which would repeal FSOC's authority to designate non-banks as SIFIs altogether).
Date: December 1, 2017
Creator: Sykes, Jay B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Killing Endangered Species: What's Reasonable Self-Defense?

Description: This report discusses the case of "United States v. Wallen" in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit; it concerns a man who killed a grizzly bear cub in violation of the Endangered Species Act and claimed self-defense. It outlines the court ruling that the man enjoys a complete defense if he "actually, even if unreasonably, believe[s] his actions were necessary to protect himself or others" and discusses the implications of the decision.
Date: November 29, 2017
Creator: Doyle, Charles
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Who's the Boss at the CFPB?

Description: This report discusses an ongoing dispute over who the new acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is following the resignation of the past director on Nov. 24., 2017. President Trump appointed Mick Mulvaney as the acting director, but the past director had already appointed Leandra English who has filed a lawsuit and asked for a temporary restraining order preventing Mulvaney from performing the duties of director. This report outlines the merits of the case and the President's power to fill vacancies under the Vacancies Act.
Date: November 28, 2017
Creator: Brannon, Valerie C. & Cole, Jared P.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Federal Government's Plenary Immigration Power Collides with the Constitutional Right to an Abortion (Part 1)

Description: This report is the first in a two-part series discussing "Garza v. Hargan", a decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit involving a detained unaccompanied alien minor and the right to terminate a pregnancy. The facts of the case and a discussion of the court's decision and whether the Health and Human Services Department policy regarding abortions unduly burdens a woman's right to an abortion is discussed.
Date: November 27, 2017
Creator: Smith, Hillel R. & Shimabukuro, Jon O.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Federal Government's Plenary Immigration Power Collides with the Constitutional Right to an Abortion (Part 2)

Description: This report is the secondt in a two-part series discussing "Garza v. Hargan", a decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit involving a detained unaccompanied alien minor and the right to terminate a pregnancy. Debate among judges regarding the right of an unaccompanied alien minor to have an abortion when the minor was detained at the border and technically never formally entered the United States are discussed.
Date: November 27, 2017
Creator: Smith, Hillel R. & Shimabukuro, Jon O.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Fibbing to Get a Lawyer: Circuits Split on Punishment

Description: This report discusses differing views held by U.S. appellate courts regarding whether lying about one's assets to pre-trial service personnel in order to get a court-appointed lawyer can be used as a justification to increase the sentence of the offender.
Date: November 27, 2017
Creator: Doyle, Charles
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Joint Employment and the Save Local Business Act

Description: This report discusses the proposed "Save Local Business Act" in the House and its provisions and implications for employers and employees in businesses where unions exist. The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) broadening of the definition of what constituted a joint employer in the case of Browning-Ferris Industries of California led to resist by some in the business community and the "Save Local Business Act" seeks to restore the former more narrow definition of joint employers.
Date: November 15, 2017
Creator: Shimabukuro, Jon O.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department