Section Newsletter Articles on Municipal Law

Wetland regulations—More than an environmental rule: A comment on County of Lake v. Campus Investments, Inc. By Lisle A. Stalter Local Government Law, March 2012 This case is important on two fronts. First, it discusses statutory interpretation and how it is applied in the context of purpose provisions of enabling legislation of statutorily created public bodies. Additionally, this case recognizes that the protection of wetlands is not only for aesthetic purposes or to provide a habitat for migratory birds.
“Occupy Your Town” and the courts By Brady Waldrop Local Government Law, January 2012 What “occupiers” see as exercise of their rights of First Amendment Freedom of Speech, police and city officials see a public nightmare of health and safety issues as well as trying to keep the public areas open to the non-occupiers.
Case law update Local Government Law, December 2011 Recent cases of interest to local government attorneys.
Synthetic drugs: Playing catch-up with chemicals By Mark C. Palmer Local Government Law, December 2011 A multi-pronged plan that stresses education, prevention and public awareness along with updated laws and their enforcement should address the expanding danger of synthetic drug use.
Case law update Local Government Law, October 2011 Recent cases of interest to local government practitioners.
$1 nominal damages award in civil rights case nets plaintiff’s attorney zero attorney fees By Michael D. Bersani and Zrinka Rukavina Local Government Law, September 2011 The recent Seventh Circuit case of Frizzell v. Szabo may undercut the ability of civil rights plaintiffs to leverage larger-than-deserved settlements.
The Political Question Doctrine applied—A look at Moore v. Grafton Township Board of Trustees By Lisle A. Stalter Local Government Law, September 2011 A brief look at the Moore v. Grafton case and the political question doctrine as it has been applied to local governments in Illinois.
Case law updates By Michael D. Bersani, Rita Edsner, and Adam Margolin Local Government Law, August 2011 Recent cases of interest to local government lawyers.
Official misconduct—What constitutes a law? By John H. Brechin Local Government Law, August 2011 Defendant maintained that he was not guilty of official misconduct because the regulations he violated are not “laws” within the meaning of the Statute.
Trial practice in municipal code enforcement matters By Patti Gregory-Chang Administrative Law, August 2011 Improper actions by municipalities through their employees can lead to liability. This article takes a look at what conduct is unconstitutional at all phases.
Case notes and civil case summaries Local Government Law, June 2011 Recent cases of interest to local government lawyers.
Lessons learned from FCC v. AT&T: A look at the recent U.S. Supreme Court case By Lisle A. Stalter Local Government Law, June 2011 Although there are some fundamental difference in the federal Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”) and the Illinois equivalent, lessons can be learned from the analysis of the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision in Federal Communications Commission v. AT&T.
Who’s that knocking at my door? A synopsis of door-to-door solicitation cases By Mark C. Palmer Local Government Law, January 2011 The local powers granted to municipalities to protect the health and welfare of its citizens, including prevention of crime, fraud and invasion of privacy, must be fairly balanced with any prior restraints on the Constitutional rights of the salespersons.
Home Rule and TNR (Trap, Neuter & Return) By Anna E. Morrison-Ricordati Animal Law, June 2010 A brief explanation of the state, county and local laws applicable to the management of feral cat colonies.
Statutory publication notice provision inadequate to afford due process in this zoning case By Kimberly L. Dahlen Civil Practice and Procedure, May 2010 In a recent decision, the Illinois Supreme Court held that the notice provided by the City of Zion in this zoning case did not satisfy due process requirements pursuant to the Illinois Municipal Code.
Abruzzo v. City of Park Ridge: Supreme Court to the rescue! By Stephen I. Lane Civil Practice and Procedure, April 2009 Since the Tort Immunity Act was passed in the mid-1960s, governmental agencies have, in many ways, enjoyed a collective lack of accountability for injuries caused by their agents and employees.
Township Code amendment update By Maryann Bullion Local Government Law, October 2008 The 95th General Assembly recently made several important changes to the Township Code (hereinafter “Code”).
Forced annexation—Are roads included in the calculation of acreage? By John H. Brechin Local Government Law, September 2008 The sole issue of Bowers v. City of Rockford was whether the 60-acre statutory limitation in Section 7-1-13 of the Illinois Municipal Code includes interior highways.
Prosecution of municipal ordinances violations and a preview of the proposed Supreme Court Rules addressing them By Mark C. Palmer Local Government Law, April 2008 On January 28, 2008, the Illinois Supreme Court Rules Committee held its annual public hearing and included on the agenda was the proposal to create new Illinois Supreme Court Rules 570-581 (“Proposed Rules”).
Proposed Illinois Supreme Court Rules regarding municipal ordinance violations By Jewel N. Klein Administrative Law, March 2008 The Administrative Law Section Council has received the text of a proposed series of Supreme Court Rules applicable to municipal ordinance violation prosecutions not punishable by a jail term and other than traffic offenses when such ordinance violations are prosecuted through the judicial system.
New rules for vacancies in municipal offices By Jenette M. Schwemler Local Government Law, January 2008 House Bill 962 amends the Illinois Municipal Code provisions regarding eligibility for election or appointment and vacancies in elective offices.
Township authority to fix problem properties By Sheryl H. Kuzma Local Government Law, December 2007 The Illinois Municipal Code has provisions for cutting overgrown weeds and demolishing dilapidated buildings, but what can a township do to remedy problem properties?
Paramedic (EMS) immunity & legislative update By Andrew Roszak Local Government Law, November 2007 Paramedics are dispatched to a residence for an unresponsive male victim.
What became of Rice? By Maryann Bullion Local Government Law, November 2007 In 2002, the Fourth District Appellate Court heard an issue of first impression and narrowed the scope of local government law, Rice v. Board of Trustees of Adams County.
City of Chicago attains another victory in ordinance violation enforcement By Patti Gregory-Chang Administrative Law, September 2007 The Appellate Court for the First District recently handed down a ruling with far-reaching implications for municipal administrative law in Illinois.
Impoundment of motor vehicles By John H. Brechin Local Government Law, January 2007 On November 16, 2006, the United States District Court entered its decision in this case involving a traffic stop by a Waukegan policeman.
Case Note: Does a special use permit run with the land? Not this one, says Justice Smith By Paul N. Keller Local Government Law, October 2006 In an opinion authored by Justice James Fitzgerald Smith, former Des Plaines City Attorney, the Illinois Appellate Court upholds the validity of a special use permit which was intended to apply only to the owner of the land at the time it was issued.
Ownership of property within a TIF By Kathleen Field Orr Local Government Law, October 2006 An often-ignored standard of the TIF Act is the provision regarding conflicts of interest on the part of certain municipal officials, employees or consultants which may arise in connection with the designation of a Redevelopment Project Area.
Second District limits municipal authority to Recoup Lost Sales Tax Revenue By Peter Friedman Local Government Law, September 2006 In a little-noticed opinion, the Second District significantly restrained municipal authority to recoup sales tax revenue lost to other municipalities able to offer more favorable tax rates for retailers (through tax rebate agreements and/or lower sales tax rates).
Can Illinois municipalities be in the business of constructing wireless broadband networks? By Adam B. Simon Local Government Law, July 2006 In the December 2005 edition of this newsletter, Mr. Jeffrey C. Torres opined on whether municipalities should be constructing wireless broadband networks.