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At its fall 2012 meeting in Kansas City, the Section of State and Local Government Law Council voted to participate in an effort to develop model local government ordinance provisions addressing discrimination against persons based on their sexual orientation, gender identification, or gender expression.
Many state and local government lawyers take for granted that tenured public employees have a property interest in employment protected by the Due Process Clause. Two trends on a possible collision course could prompt the Supreme Court of the United States to reverse four decades of precedent and deny most tenured public teachers due process rights in employment.
The Voting Rights Act of 1965 was pure antidiscrimination legislation aimed at ending the egregious violation of Fifteenth Amendment rights in one region of the country. It protected the southern election process from racist contamination. But a law that had initially been designed simply to open the doors of electoral opportunity has been transformed into an effort to protect minorities from any measure that might weaken their electoral strength—and then into one requiring proactive efforts to maximize their political power.
A number of interesting cases make the upcoming Term one to follow for local government lawyers.
The leadership of the Section of State and Local Government Law has been productive in recent months, working to develop and enhance programming, publications, and other member services.