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Prohibiting Barriers To The Booth: The Case For Limited Nationwide Preclearance Under A Modified Voting Rights Act, Hayley Trahan-Liptak 2014 Boston College Law School

Prohibiting Barriers To The Booth: The Case For Limited Nationwide Preclearance Under A Modified Voting Rights Act, Hayley Trahan-Liptak

Boston College Journal of Law & Social Justice

The right to vote is fundamental to American democracy, yet for hundreds of years American history has been marked by efforts to restrict voting. Often, voting restrictions disproportionately affect minority voters, through both intentional discrimination and facially-neutral voting laws. Since its 1965 implementation, the Voting Rights Act (“VRA”) has been used to fight discriminatory voting laws through affirmative suits and mandatory federal approval of voting changes for states with a history of voter discrimination. On June 25, 2013, the Supreme Court struck down a crucial part of the VRA, eliminating the requirement that jurisdictions with storied pasts of voter discrimination ...


Confronting A Double-Edged Sword: Providing Bullies Due Process Protections Without Undercutting Massachusetts’ Efforts To Combat Bullying, Casey B. Nathan 2014 Boston College Law School

Confronting A Double-Edged Sword: Providing Bullies Due Process Protections Without Undercutting Massachusetts’ Efforts To Combat Bullying, Casey B. Nathan

Boston College Journal of Law & Social Justice

In 2012, the Massachusetts legislature enacted Chapter 71, Section 37H3/4 of the Massachusetts General Laws, ensuring that students facing long-term suspensions or expulsions receive additional rights during disciplinary hearings. The Massachusetts law entitles accused students to representation by counsel and allows for the cross-examination of student witnesses. Unfortunately, awarding these additional rights undermines the necessary efforts taken by the state to address school bullying. Nevertheless, without these rights, accused bullies have little recourse to address unfair or inaccurate allegations at their school hearings. Ultimately, this Note proposes a solution to protect victims from the trauma of cross-examination by the ...


An Equal Playing Field: The Potential Conflict Between Title Ix & The Massachusetts Equal Rights Amendment, Christopher Marquis 2014 Boston College Law School

An Equal Playing Field: The Potential Conflict Between Title Ix & The Massachusetts Equal Rights Amendment, Christopher Marquis

Boston College Journal of Law & Social Justice

In 2012 the Department of Education received a complaint claiming that the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association’s (“MIAA”) policy of allowing boys to try out for girls’ field hockey constituted a violation of Title IX. This federal statute prohibits discrimination in educational institutions on the basis of sex. This Note looks at the common roots of Title IX and the decision of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court that allowed boys’ participation in field hockey. It then examines Title IX as it applies to the MIAA field hockey policy and determines that the Massachusetts Policy does not, in and of itself ...


Connecting The Dots: Forming A Uniform Voter Identification System Through Established Law, Louis A. D'Amarino 2014 University of Massachusetts School of Law

Connecting The Dots: Forming A Uniform Voter Identification System Through Established Law, Louis A. D'Amarino

University of Massachusetts Law Review

The 2002 Help America Vote Act requires election officials to request photo ID for first time voters who register by mail. Some states took this a step further and required all voters to present photo ID in order to exercise the franchise. These laws have attracted a great deal of attention recently because of the belief that these laws disenfranchise voters. However, what is needed is a uniform system that allows voters access to the ballot and also protects the integrity of the ballot. This note argues that all Congress has to do is connect the dots in several federal ...


Confusing Regulatory Takings With Regulatory Exactions: The Supreme Court Gets Lost In The Swamp Of Koontz, Israel Piedra 2014 Boston College Law School

Confusing Regulatory Takings With Regulatory Exactions: The Supreme Court Gets Lost In The Swamp Of Koontz, Israel Piedra

Boston College Environmental Affairs Law Review

In 2013, the Supreme Court concluded that monetary exactions must be considered with the same judicial scrutiny as land exactions. Land exactions are required contributions from an individual to a government entity in exchange for approval to develop real property. Land exactions proposed by regulatory bodies must be roughly proportional and bear a nexus to the development permit requested, otherwise the exaction constitutes a taking in violation of the Fifth Amendment. In Koontz v. St. Johns River Management District, the Supreme Court extended the nexus/rough proportionality test to instances in which government bodies impose monetary conditions on land development ...


Carbon Outlasts The Law: States Walk The Constitutional Line, Steven Ferrey 2014 Boston College Law School

Carbon Outlasts The Law: States Walk The Constitutional Line, Steven Ferrey

Boston College Environmental Affairs Law Review

State carbon policies to control climate warming and our energy future are under legal attack. A successful barrage of litigation now invokes the dormant Commerce Clause and the Federal Power Act as interpreted through the Filed Rate Doctrine, as well as the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution, to challenge the legal validity and sustainability of these state carbon-based laws. California and other states have survived these legal challenges sparingly, and then often only by prevailing with procedural defenses that dismiss the case before a decision on the legal merits of their state energy regulation. This Article examines and ...


Preventative Legislation Ensures Intended Parents Of Gestational Surrogacy Benefits Under The California Family Rights Act, Jennifer Jackson 2014 SelectedWorks

Preventative Legislation Ensures Intended Parents Of Gestational Surrogacy Benefits Under The California Family Rights Act, Jennifer Jackson

Jennifer Jackson

We live in a rapidly evolving technological age, which now allows parents to enter surrogacy contracts. In such a world, the law often lags in catching up to technology and the ramifications that may ensue. This paper focuses on the California Family Rights Act (CFRA) and the consequences it has on surrogacy agreements and the rights intended parents. While the CFRA includes broad language as to the definition of a “child,” case law shows that surrogate born children may be unintentionally excluded. As a result, this paper analyzes the arguments both for and against revision to the CFRA and concludes ...


California Egg Toss - The High Costs Of Avoiding Unenforceable Surrgoacy Contracts, Jennifer Jackson 2014 SelectedWorks

California Egg Toss - The High Costs Of Avoiding Unenforceable Surrgoacy Contracts, Jennifer Jackson

Jennifer Jackson

In an emotionally charged decision regarding surrogacy contracts, it is important to recognize the ramifications, costs, and policy. There are advantages to both “gestational carrier surrogacy” contracts and “traditional surrogacy” contracts. However, this paper focuses on the differences between these contracts using case law. Specifically, this paper will focus on the implications of California case law regarding surrogacy contracts. Cases such as Johnson v. Calvert and In Re Marriage of Moschetta provide a clear distinction between these contracts. This distinction will show that while gestational carrier surrogacy contracts are more expensive, public policy and court opinions will provide certainty and ...


The Spending Power And Environmental Law After Sebelius, Erin Ryan 2014 SelectedWorks

The Spending Power And Environmental Law After Sebelius, Erin Ryan

Erin Ryan

This article analyzes the Supreme Court’s new spending power doctrine and its impact on state-federal bargaining in programs of cooperative federalism, using the laboratory of environmental law. (It expands on the legal analysis in an Issue Brief originally published by the American Constitution Society on Oct. 1, 2013.)

After the Supreme Court ruled in the highly charged Affordable Care Act case of 2012, National Federation of Independent Business vs. Sebelius, the political arena erupted in debate over the implications for the health reform initiative and, more generally, the reach of federal law. Analysts fixated on the decision’s dueling ...


Sentence Creep: Increasing Penalties In Michigan And The Need For Sentencing Reform, Anne Yantus 2014 University of Michigan Law School

Sentence Creep: Increasing Penalties In Michigan And The Need For Sentencing Reform, Anne Yantus

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

The governor and several legislators have requested review of Michigan’s sentencing practices with an eye toward sentence reform. Michigan leads the country in the average length of prison stay, and by internal comparisons the average minimum sentence has nearly doubled in the last decade. This Article explores cumulative increases to criminal penalties over the last several decades as reflected in amendments to the sentencing guidelines, increased maximum sentences, harsh mandatory minimum terms, increased authority for consecutive sentencing, wide sentencing discretion for habitual and repeat drug offenders, and tough parole practices and policies. The reality for legislators is that it ...


Invading The Realm Of The Dead: Exploring The (Im)Propriety Of Punitive Damage Awards Against Estates, Emily Himes Iversen 2014 University of Michigan Law School

Invading The Realm Of The Dead: Exploring The (Im)Propriety Of Punitive Damage Awards Against Estates, Emily Himes Iversen

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

Punitive damages are traditionally understood, at least in part, as damages designed to punish. It should therefore come as no surprise that, in the majority of states that have decided the issue, courts have chosen not to allow punitive damage awards against the estates of deceased tortfeasors. After all, the tortfeasor can no longer be punished (at least by tort awards). Nonetheless, punitive damages can also serve other purposes, such as deterrence. This Note argues that Michigan, a state which has not yet taken a stance, should adopt the minority position that allows punitive damages to be awarded against estates ...


State “Subsidies” And Unnecessary Public Funding: The Texas Legislature’S Successful Restriction Of Constitutional Rights In Department Of Texas V. Texas Lottery Commission, Tyler A. Dever Ms. 2014 SelectedWorks

State “Subsidies” And Unnecessary Public Funding: The Texas Legislature’S Successful Restriction Of Constitutional Rights In Department Of Texas V. Texas Lottery Commission, Tyler A. Dever Ms.

Tyler A Dever Ms.

This Note argues that the Act’s political advocacy restrictions are unconstitutional as applied to the Plaintiffs in Texas Lottery. This Note discusses government subsidies, occupational licenses, and the doctrine of unconstitutional conditions. It then analyzes the charitable organizations’ First Amendment rights in light of the challenged Act. Although this Note argues against the majority’s upholding of the Act, it will also present flaws in the plaintiffs’ argument for injunction and explain why the court may have ruled in favor of the state.


Let Educators Educate, Let Builders Build: Making A Case For School Facility Privatization, John Pizzo 2014 SelectedWorks

Let Educators Educate, Let Builders Build: Making A Case For School Facility Privatization, John Pizzo

John Pizzo

No abstract provided.


Amended Brief Of Professor Nancy Gertner And Professor Kent Greenfield As Amici Curiae In Support Of Plaintiff, Louisiana Municipal Police Employees' Retirement System V. The Hershey Company, C.A. No. 7996-Ml, Nancy Gertner, Kent Greenfield 2014 Boston College Law School

Amended Brief Of Professor Nancy Gertner And Professor Kent Greenfield As Amici Curiae In Support Of Plaintiff, Louisiana Municipal Police Employees' Retirement System V. The Hershey Company, C.A. No. 7996-Ml, Nancy Gertner, Kent Greenfield

Kent Greenfield

Amicus brief filed by Nancy Gertner and Kent Greenfield in the case of Louisiana Municipal Police Employees' Retirement System v. The Hershey Company, C.A. No. 7996-ML.


Public School Governance And Cyber Security: School Districts Provide Easy Targets For Cyber Thieves, michael a. alao 2014 SelectedWorks

Public School Governance And Cyber Security: School Districts Provide Easy Targets For Cyber Thieves, Michael A. Alao

michael a alao

School districts rely on information systems to a similar extent as private, business organizations, yet the rules and regulations to ensure that school districts maintain adequate security to prevent data breaches and theft have failed to keep pace with private-sector developments. Advances in the private sector include notice-of-breach laws, consumer protection laws limiting individual liability for fraudulent electronic funds transfers, and auditing and reporting of internal controls. The public sector, including school districts, has also made advances in cyber security rules and regulations, but to a more limited extent than the private sector. Because of the sheer number of public ...


Taxing Judicial Restraint: How Washington's Supreme Court Misinterpreted Its Role And The Washington State Constitution, Nicholas Carlson 2014 Seattle University School of Law

Taxing Judicial Restraint: How Washington's Supreme Court Misinterpreted Its Role And The Washington State Constitution, Nicholas Carlson

Seattle University Law Review

In the realm of constitutional interpretation, the judicial department reigns supreme. League of Education Voters v. State exemplifies the judiciary’s potential abuse of its interpretative role: The Washington Supreme Court misinterpreted its judicial function because it ignored the text of Washington State’s constitution and held a statute unconstitutional. The court, therefore, voided a statute because of judicial volition, not because Washington’s constitution demanded that outcome. This Note challenges the reasoning in League and makes a novel suggestion for Washington State constitutional analysis, an approach that may apply to other states. This Note details a new analytical framework ...


Peering Into The Comcast-Netflix Deal, Daniel A. Lyons 2014 Boston College Law School

Peering Into The Comcast-Netflix Deal, Daniel A. Lyons

Boston College Law School Faculty Papers

No abstract provided.


Dictatorships For Democracy: Takeovers Of Financially Failed Cities, Clayton P. Gillette 2014 NELLCO

Dictatorships For Democracy: Takeovers Of Financially Failed Cities, Clayton P. Gillette

New York University Public Law and Legal Theory Working Papers

States have traditionally offered support to their fiscally distressed municipalities. When less intrusive forms of assistance fail to bring stability, some states employ supervisory institutions that exercise approval authority over local budgets or, more intrusively, that displace locally elected officials. These “takeover boards” are frequently accused of representing an antidemocratic form of local government and a denial of local autonomy.

In this Article, I suggest that the extent to which takeover boards are subject to an anti-democratic critique is frequently overstated. Efforts to revive near-insolvent localities cannot be oblivious to the causes that generated their distress. Depopulation, high unemployment, depleted ...


Dictatorships For Democracy: Takeovers Of Financially Failed Cities, Clayton P. Gillette 2014 NELLCO

Dictatorships For Democracy: Takeovers Of Financially Failed Cities, Clayton P. Gillette

New York University Law and Economics Working Papers

States have traditionally offered support to their fiscally distressed municipalities. When less intrusive forms of assistance fail to bring stability, some states employ supervisory institutions that exercise approval authority over local budgets or, more intrusively, that displace locally elected officials. These “takeover boards” are frequently accused of representing an antidemocratic form of local government and a denial of local autonomy.

In this Article, I suggest that the extent to which takeover boards are subject to an anti-democratic critique is frequently overstated. Efforts to revive near-insolvent localities cannot be oblivious to the causes that generated their distress. Depopulation, high unemployment, depleted ...


Financial Security Scorecard: A State-By-State Analysis Of Economic Pressures Facing Future Retirees, Christian Weller, Nari Rhee, Carolyn Arcand 2014 University of Massachusetts Boston

Financial Security Scorecard: A State-By-State Analysis Of Economic Pressures Facing Future Retirees, Christian Weller, Nari Rhee, Carolyn Arcand

Public Policy and Public Affairs Faculty Publication Series

As Americans increasingly worry about their retirement prospects, states play an important and growing role in retirement security policy. States already manage long-term care programs for the elderly through Medicaid. Concerned about the impact of future elder poverty on state and local budgets and their local economies, a number of states are exploring the creation of low-cost and low-risk retirement savings plans for private sector workers who lack access to pensions or 401(k)s on the job. Some states have developed programs to help older workers find work.

This report presents the Financial Security Scorecard, designed to inform state-level ...


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