Professors Eric Lane & Ross Sandler
Most of the services needed by people are provided by urban local governments, which operate within a complex environment of state and local laws and an overlay of federal law. This course provides a focused inquiry into the laws, regulations, and judicial decisions that so dramatically affect the capacity of local governments to deliver their services and manage their affairs. Topics vary with current events and may include the impact of campaign finance, voting rights and election laws, institutional reform litigation and court supervision of state and local social programs; effect of the state legislature and city council’s internal rules on legislation; impact of state and city land use rules on redevelopment of Downtown, the World Trade Center site, and other major urban sites; court involvement in funding public education; and the impact of state and city laws governing the fiscal affairs of local governments. Topics are selected from among currently contested issues and those best enabling the student to understand the interplay between politics, law, and management of public institutions. Course work consists of directed research, readings, and class participation. A paper is required. This is a capstone course for Harlan scholars affiliated with the Center for New York City Law, but is open to all students. Enrollment limited.