The Fall edition of State & Local Law News features my article on the U.S. Supreme Court's recent decisions in Carrigan and Guarnieri. From the Introduction:
The U.S. Supreme Court decided two First Amendment cases this Term of special interest to attorneys practicing state and local government law. In Nevada Comm’n on Ethics v. Carrigan, the Court concluded Nevada’s Ethics in Government Law, which requires elected and appointed government officials to recuse themselves from voting when they might have a conflict of interest, does not violate an official’s right to vote. By upholding Nevada’s ethics laws, the Court allowed state and local governments to continue to regulate the conflicts of interests of elected and appointed government officials and other government employees. In Borough of Duryea v. Guarnieri, the Court applied the long-standing balancing test applicable to government employee speech to government employee union grievances and held that a public employee—in that case, a police chief—was protected by the Petition Clause against retaliation for filing a union grievance only if it addressed a "matter of public concern." In both cases, the Court allowed state and local governments to exercise broad discretion in how they manage their elected officials and employees.
The article is available below, or here.
Next week, I'll be in Tucson to present my thoughts on "Ethical Considerations for Municipal Attorneys: Caught in the Crosshairs Reconciling the Rules of Professional Conduct with Government Ethics Laws" More information on that CLE session here.