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2012 Articles

Can public bodies claim records are “Outside the scope” of a FOIA request? By John Redlingshafer June 2012 A discussion of the Attorney General’s Public Access Counselor's binding opinion 12-009, which makes clear that “a public body is not authorized to redact information from responsive records which it considers to be ‘outside the scope’ of the FOIA request.”
Case law update By Rita Elsner June 2012 Recent cases of interest to local government law practitioners.
Case law updates December 2012 Recent cases of interest to local government law practitioners.
Case law updates By John Holmes August 2012 Recent cases of interest to local government lawyers.
Is an elected official an employee? By Paul N. Keller & Donald W. Anderson January 2012 There is no “one-size-fits-all” answer to the question of elected official as employee—An individual elected official is not an employee for purposes of FLSA, IPLRA, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, ADEA, the Illinois Human Rights Act, and the Unemployment Insurance Act, but may opt into IMRF, and is an employee for purposes of the Tort Immunity Act.
Municipal and county zoning and public school districts By Kurt P. Froehlich May 2012 In an Opinion, the Illinois Attorney general recently concluded that “public school districts are subject to municipal and county zoning ordinances, except to the extent that compliance...would frustrate a school district’s statutory objectives.”
“Occupy Your Town” and the courts By Brady Waldrop 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.
Sudden burst of FOIA binding opinions from the Public Access Counselor By John M. O’Driscoll March 2012 It appears that the Public Access Counselor has focused on increasing the number of binding opinions, presumably to offer some guidance to governmental entities and the public. However, it also appears that there is a long way to go before some of the holes in the legislation are filled.
Updating eavesdropping: ACLU v. Alvarez and potential legislation By Jordan M. Kielian & David J. Silverman August 2012 ACLU v. Alvarez changed the landscape of the eavesdropping law in Illinois. Prosecutors can no longer enforce the law against people who openly record police officers performing their duties in public.
Video gaming—A good gamble for future municipal revenues? By Marty Shanahan December 2012 In difficult economic times, a municipality may increase its revenue by simply allowing video gaming within its borders. Are municipalities willing to take that “chance” despite the stigma and possible ill effects of video gaming? Will the state reduce the amount of the Distributive Fund percentage allocated to the municipality, leaving the municipality with all of the problems and reduced or no benefits? A majority of Illinois municipalities seem to be willing to take the “gamble.”
Wetland regulations—More than an environmental rule: A comment on County of Lake v. Campus Investments, Inc. By Lisle A. Stalter 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.
When a private individual can claim qualified immunity—A look at Filarsky v. Delia By Lisle A. Stalter May 2012 On April 17th of this year, the United States Supreme Court, in a unanimous decision, extended qualified immunity protections to a private individual hired by the government.