The dust from the November election is far from settled, but Los Angeles is already headed back to the ballot box in March. The big ticket item for planning in the city: Measure S, also known as the Neighborhood Integrity Initiative.
East Cleveland, a struggling suburb of Cleveland, has ended up in so much fiscal distress that it is considering allowing Cleveland to annex it as a desperation move. We may need to rethink our decades of assumptions about home rule in the Northeast.
The Oklahoma State Legislature is well on its way to passing Senate Bill 809, which would limit local power to regulate oil and gas drilling. In Texas, Senate Bill 343 would end "home rule" on many issues, fracking included.
In a huge victory for fracking opponents and a major blow to the shale gas drilling industry, the New York Court of Appeals, the state's highest, ruled on June 30 that municipalities can use zoning laws to enact fracking bans or moratoria.
Fracking opponents scored two major court victories In New York State on May 2 when an Appellate Division court panel ruled unanimously that two towns can use zoning to ban fracking. Paradoxically, it could also be good for energy companies.
A state supreme court ruling will prevent the city of Cleveland from requiring its employees to live within the city limits. City leaders fear neighborhoods will decline, while some firefighters and other city employees say they'll stick around.