State & Local

Topics

From zoning restrictions to occupational licensing, regulations by state and local governments often have the most direct impact – both positive or negative – on individuals and communities. Given the importance played by these regulations, how can we ensure that their benefits outweigh their costs?

Legislative Exits from the Land Use Labyrinth

May 3, 2021

In this paper, the authors argue that land use restrictions limit housing supply and increase housing costs, lay out why the judiciary is unlikely to solve this problem, and evaluate several potential legislative solutions.

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Ten Reforms to Spur Coronavirus Recovery

September 17, 2020

In this paper, the authors offer ten policy proposals for mitigating the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic. These proposals include both positive reforms and warnings about pitfalls that are likely to make the situation worse.

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The Land Use Labyrinth: Problems of Land Use Regulation and the Permitting Process

January 8, 2020

In this paper, the authors argue that the uncertainty in local land-use rules often makes new building prohibitively risky, costly, and complex. The ambiguity of these rules and the lack of substantial legal recourse for those seeking to build, they suggest, hampers entrepreneurship and healthy economic development and increases inequality. Finally, the authors suggest a set of reforms that might improve the current state of affairs.

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Live, Work, Share: Putting out the Welcome Mat to Home-Sharing and Home-Based Businesses

November 11, 2019

In this paper, Anastasia Boden and Jonathan Riches argue that home-based businesses are an important part of the economy with a very long history. State and local regulators, the authors claim, have often saddled home-based businesses with cumbersome rules that do more to hamper the property rights of homeowners than protect the public interest.

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Managing the Regulatory Thicket: Cumulative Burdens of State and Local Regulation

January 14, 2019

The authors of this paper introduce and identify the ‘regulatory thicket’ — the compliance burdens caused by the accumulation of individual federal, state, and local regulations — and its effect on the ability of entrepreneurs and small business owners to pursue the American Dream. The authors explore this systemic issue and propose guidelines to trim the ‘regulatory thicket.’

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Occupational Licensing Run Wild

November 7, 2017

The authors of this paper provide a historical analysis of occupational licensure in the United States, discuss the costs and benefits of our licensing system, explore so-called “licensing creep,” and propose solutions to help address “occupational licensing run wild.”

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Explainer Episode 30 – An Update on Telemedicine Laws and Regulations

October 12, 2021

Experts explore the rationales behind telemedicine regulations and examine how reforms and lawsuits might transform how patients receive care.

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Deep Dive Episode 194 – Examining the CDC’s Eviction Moratorium

August 25, 2021

Top experts dive deep into the legal issues surrounding the CDC’s eviction moratorium and the relief sought by both landlords and renters.

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Deep Dive Episode 192 – Gender Based Board Quotas, the Fourteenth Amendment, and Meland v. Weber

August 10, 2021

An expert panel discusses the underlying law and the likely next steps in Meland v. Weber, a case regarding gender based corporate board quotas in California.

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Deep Dive Episode 187 – Courthouse Steps Decision: Cedar Point Nursery v. Hassid

July 8, 2021

Attorney Wen Fa analyzes the Supreme Court’s decision in Cedar Point Nursery v. Hassid.

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Explainer Episode 28 – Rep. Harshbarger on the Freedom to Work Act

July 6, 2021

Rep. Diana Harshbarger joins Shoshana Weissmann to discuss the “Freedom to Work Act” and the most prevalent arguments for and against its passage.

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Deep Dive Episode 181 – State of Emergency? Kentucky’s Legislature vs. Governor

June 22, 2021

Mitchel Denham and Oliver Dunford debate the implications of two cases that could shape the future of emergency government powers in Kentucky.

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Explainer Episode 27 – Occupational Regulations in the Beauty Industry

June 8, 2021

Anastasia P. Boden interviews Daniel Greenberg about his new article, “Regulating Glamour: A Quantitative Analysis of the Health and Safety Training of Appearance Professionals.”

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Explainer Episode 26 – Land Use Restrictions and Legislative Reform

May 18, 2021

In a conversation moderated by Kimberly Hermann, Braden Boucek and Emily Hamilton discuss several proposed legislative reforms to land use restrictions.

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Deep Dive Episode 157 – Regulating Land Use During a Pandemic

January 26, 2021

What role do policymakers have to play in facilitating efficient land use during this uncertain time? Experts debate.

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Deep Dive Episode 150 – Regulating Business in the Age of COVID-19

December 10, 2020

In this live podcast, Brian Kabateck, Luke Wake, and Clark Neily address vital questions raised by COVID-19, including whether this is the right time for states to liberalize economic regulations more generally.

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Deep Dive Episode 148 – Civil Liberties and COVID-19 Shelter in Place Orders

December 7, 2020

On November 19, 2020, RTP co-hosted an online event featuring Professor Julia Mahoney and J. Gregory Grisham.

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Deep Dive Episode 140 – It Can Be Done Live: The Future of Our Food

October 21, 2020

An expert panel explores the potential of human ingenuity to solve the problems we face when it comes to our food and the conditions necessary to make those solutions a reality.

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Deep Dive Episode 134 – It Can Be Done Live: The Future of Our Seas

September 30, 2020

An expert panel explores the potential of human ingenuity to solve the problems facing our oceans and the conditions necessary to make those solutions a reality.

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Explainer Episode 15 – Equality in Government Contracting

July 2, 2020

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the federal government is waiving affirmative action requirements in federal construction projects. Wen Fa discusses whether state and local regulations should follow suit.

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Deep Dive Episode 108 – Regulating Home-Sharing and Home-Based Businesses

April 28, 2020

In this episode, Brooks Rainwater and Jon Riches discuss developments in state and local regulations surrounding home-sharing and home-based businesses. How do we balance safety and public goods with innovation and entrepreneurialism?

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Deep Dive Episode 96 – New York’s “Rent Stabilization” Law

March 20, 2020

Does New York’s “rent stabilization” law violate the federal Constitution? Richard Epstein and Andrew Pincus discuss.

 

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Explainer Episode 5 – Arizona’s Licensing Reform

October 2, 2019

What are the costs and benefits of occupational licensing? Why do many believe that the laws around licensing ought to be reformed, and what has Arizona been doing to address these concerns? Jon Riches of the Goldwater Institute gives an overview of this issue as it has played out in the Grand Canyon State.

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Explainer Episode 2 – The Dynamex Decision and its Implications for Independent Contractors

August 23, 2019

In this episode, Luke Wake explores the implications of the recent California Supreme Court decision in Dynamex v. Superior Court for small business owners in California.

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Deep Dive Episode 53 – Analyzing the Regulatory Thicket

May 17, 2019

Brooks Rainwater and Luke Wake explore whether we should maintain the status quo, seek to scale-back existing regulation, and/or winnow existing regulatory regimes.

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Deep Dive Episode 31 – Tennessee Licensing Board Alarmed by Entrepreneur’s Facial Recognition Software

May 7, 2018

Adam Jackson (Edge AI) and Braden Boucek (Beacon Center of Tennessee) discuss how Adam has been barred by the Tennessee Alarm Systems Contractors Board from distributing the software he developed to identify potentially dangerous individuals and prompt a security response before violence occurs.

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Deep Dive Episode 30 – Arizona Dumps Deference: The Beginning of the End for Chevron?

May 1, 2018

Philip Hamburger (Columbia Law School) and Jonathan Riches (Goldwater Institute) discuss Arizona’s recent passage of legislation eliminating Chevron deference in Arizona state courts, how this new law might change state agency rulemaking and enforcement, and whether this law can serve as a model for the rest of the country, and the federal government.

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Deep Dive Episode 28 – Virginia’s (Un)happy Hour: Is the State Restricting Ads and Economic Rights?

April 18, 2018

Geoff Tracy (Chef Geoff’s) and Anastasia P. Boden (Pacific Legal Foundation) discuss Geoff’s pending case against Virginia’s happy hour advertising law and the potential First Amendment issues at stake.

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Deep Dive Episode 18 – Regulatory Hurdles for Entrepreneurs: The Story of Project Belle

January 16, 2018

Armand Lauzon (Project Belle) and Braden Boucek (Beacon Center of Tennessee) discuss Project Belle and the company’s experience with the Tennessee State Board of Cosmetology.

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Examining the CDC’s Eviction Moratorium

August 25, 2021

Top experts dive deep into the legal issues surrounding the CDC’s eviction moratorium and the relief sought by both landlords and renters.

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Gender Based Board Quotas, the Fourteenth Amendment, and Meland v. Weber

August 20, 2021

An expert panel discusses the underlying law and the likely next steps in Meland v. Weber, a case regarding gender based corporate board quotas in California.

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Telehealth: The Regulatory Frontier

May 27, 2021

In this Fourth Branch video, medical professionals and legal experts examine the debates over the regulation of telehealth.

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Cutting Through Government Action in COVID-19: Reasonable or Arbitrary?

April 7, 2021

Legal experts and business owners affected by COVID-19 restrictions weigh in on the debate over those restrictions.

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Regulation of Telehealth Services in the Era of COVID

December 22, 2020

Should telemedicine be considered as the same or different from traditional office visits, and what regulations should govern it?

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Should Local Zoning Laws Become More Flexible in the Age of COVID-19?

December 14, 2020

Land use regulations have been relaxed to accommodate the COVID era, but will this flexibility remain after things finally start returning to normal?

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Civil Liberties and COVID-19 Shelter in Place Orders

December 4, 2020

On November 19, RTP and the Federalist Society’s Memphis Lawyers Chapter co-hosted an online event on “Civil Liberties and COVID-19 Shelter in Place Orders.”

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The Debate over Worker Classification in California: CA AB-5 and Beyond

December 1, 2020

Californians approved an exemption to AB-5 permitting app-based ridesharing and delivery drivers to function as independent contractors. What about other independent contractors?

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It Can Be Done Live: The Future of Our Food

October 21, 2020

The creators of the award-winning documentary, They Say It Can’t Be Done, in partnership with the Federalist Society’s Regulatory Transparency Project, present It Can Be Done Live – a conversation between entrepreneurs, regulatory experts, and noted academics around creative and bipartisan solutions to global challenges to our shared future. The last of four panel events, It Can Be Done Live: The Future of Our Food, took place on October 1st, 2020.

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It Can Be Done Live: The Future of Our Seas

September 30, 2020

The creators of the award-winning documentary, They Say It Can’t Be Done, in partnership with the Federalist Society’s Regulatory Transparency Project, present It Can Be Done Live – a conversation between entrepreneurs, regulatory experts, and noted academics around creative and bipartisan solutions to global challenges to our shared future. The first of four panel events, It Can Be Done Live: The Future of Our Seas took place on September 10th, 2020.

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California’s AB-5 Law: Who can be considered an “independent contractor”?

June 30, 2020

In 2019, California passed AB-5, a law that mandates that most workers should be considered “employees” rather than “independent contractors.” Advocates claim that this law will offer more protection for all workers. Opponents state that this law will stifle innovation and deprive workers of the independence to structure their own relationships.

Alida Kass of the New Jersey Civil Justice Institute explores how the California law compares to other states and the issues that it may raise for workers.

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Big Cities and Zoning: The Search for Affordable Housing

March 31, 2020

Across the country, housing in larger cities is becoming more expensive. Lower and middle-class families are being priced out of many of them. This video tells the story of Seattle residents Kip and Michelle Klemz and discusses the role that zoning regulations, specifically those that limit housing density, play in this trend.

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Resolute: Navigating the Regulatory Thicket

April 29, 2019

Founded by Caleb Cook in 2001 and run today with his wife Lois, America’s Phone Guys provides telecommunications and VoIP phone services to businesses in and around the Portland, Oregon metro area. As a home-based business, they encounter a complex web of regulatory requirements and grapple with the compliance burdens caused by the accumulation of individual federal, state, and local regulations.

In this Fourth Branch video, Cary Coglianese (University of Pennsylvania Law School) and Luke A. Wake (NFIB Small Business Legal Center) join Caleb and Lois to explore this web — dubbed the “regulatory thicket” by some. What does the regulatory thicket look like in practice? How does it affect small business owners, their employees, and their customers? Taken as a whole, are the benefits of multiple layers of regulation worth the costs?

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Should You Need a License to Massage a Horse?

December 5, 2017

In 2012, Celeste Kelly received a cease-and-desist letter from the Arizona State Veterinary Medical Examining Board for engaging in horse massage therapy without being a licensed veterinarian. Hear Celeste’s story and learn more about occupational licensure in this Fourth Branch video.

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A License to Massage a Horse? (Preview)

November 6, 2017

In many states, animal massage requires a license. Watch this preview of our upcoming in-depth video on occupational licensing and the story of Celeste Kelly – an animal massage therapist located in Arizona.

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California’s Occupational Licensing Laws Shouldn’t Kick People When They’re Down

Anastasia P. Boden

February 18, 2020

It’s become somewhat of a banality to say that occupational licensing has run amok.  As studies pile up showing that licensure has virtually no effect on quality—yet drives prices up, stifles innovation, and keeps people out jobs—a bi-partisan coalition has emerged in favor of rolling back licensure and restoring economic opportunity.

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Licensing Speech & Regulating the Internet: Tennessee’s Auctioneer Licensing Scheme

Braden Boucek

July 22, 2019

“A state may not, under the guise of prohibiting professional misconduct, ignore constitutional rights.” And yet, ignoring fundamental speech rights is precisely what Tennessee is doing through its auctioneer licensing regime.

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The Regulatory Thicket Hurts the Most Vulnerable

Yesim Sayin Taylor

April 12, 2019

For years, the District of Columbia’s main regulatory agency, the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs have resisted reform. D.C. residents will argue about anything, but they are unified in their frustration with this agency: builders complain that permitting takes too long and code inspections are too arbitrary; building tenants complain code violations go unenforced; businesses complain there is too much paperwork required to get up and running; policy experts worry professional licensing disproportionately harms lower-income professionals. The agency’s operations remain stuck in the past, and no administration has managed to significantly reform it.

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Docket Watch: Zarate v. Tennessee of Cosmetology and Barber Examiners

Braden Boucek

October 22, 2018

If Elias wanted to save a life or write a law, his educational level would not disqualify him. Unfortunately, it does disqualify him from cutting hair.

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