Robert Levan, informal “dean” of municipal attorneys, passes away

By Frank JohnsonDeputy City Attorney, City of Gaithersburg Robert Levan — father of Section Council member Elissa Levan — passed away yesterday, April 28, 2022. I know all of us in the Section join in offering condolences to Elissa. Bob Levan was known as the informal “dean” of municipal attorneys, and served as a mentor (with incredibleContinue reading “Robert Levan, informal “dean” of municipal attorneys, passes away”

Courts have discretion to consider moot issues on appeal

By Frank JohnsonDeputy City Attorney, City of Gaithersburg The Court of Appeals, in In re S.F., ____ Md. ____, 2022 WL 324890 (February 3, 2022), recently confirmed that, even when an issue is moot, courts still have discretion to consider it. The decision involved a “no suspension from school” probation condition imposed on a minor, whoContinue reading “Courts have discretion to consider moot issues on appeal”

“Lunch and Learn” Discusses Religious Exemptions from Vaccine Mandates

By Frank JohnsonDeputy City Attorney, City of Gaithersburg At the Section’s latest “lunch and learn” session on February 25, Michael Foreman, Law Professor and Director of the Civil Rights Appellate Clinic at Pennsylvania State University School of Law, spoke about religious exemptions from vaccine mandates. He pointed out that, while vaccinations can be required, an employerContinue reading ““Lunch and Learn” Discusses Religious Exemptions from Vaccine Mandates”

Virtual Law Institute to Address Police Reform, PIA

By Frank JohnsonDeputy City Attorney, City of Gaithersburg The Section will be holding the annual Law Institute in late May. The Section Council has decided this event will be virtual, and topics are expected to include a summary of the General Assembly police reform efforts from last year, as well as Public Information Act changes, asContinue reading “Virtual Law Institute to Address Police Reform, PIA”

Md. High Court: Local Governments Limited to Authority Granted By State

By Frank JohnsonDeputy City Attorney, City of Gaithersburg The Maryland Constitution specifies that all local governments – including municipalities, charter counties, code counties, and commissioner counties – are subject to any limitations imposed by the State. Article 11-A, Section 3, specifies that state law prevails in any conflict with local law, and Section 6 furtherContinue reading “Md. High Court: Local Governments Limited to Authority Granted By State”

Religious Exemptions from Vaccine Mandates Topic of “Lunch and Learn”

By Frank JohnsonDeputy City Attorney, City of Gaithersburg Put a hold on your calendar: The Section will sponsor a program on February 25 at 12 p.m. concerning religious exemptions from mandatory vaccine requirements. This is a topic that, with the pandemic, many of us are now having to address, so we are pleased to present MichaelContinue reading “Religious Exemptions from Vaccine Mandates Topic of “Lunch and Learn””

State and Local Government Law Institute planned for May 2022

By Frank JohnsonDeputy City Attorney, City of Gaithersburg The annual Law Institute will be this spring, in late May.  Whether it is in-person or, as last year, virtual, the State and Local Government Section is planning to focus on the major recent changes to police regulation, training, use-of-force, and investigations. There will also be a reviewContinue reading “State and Local Government Law Institute planned for May 2022”

State and Local Government Section Council Members Set for 2021 – 2022

By Frank JohnsonDeputy City Attorney, City of Gaithersburg Council members serve the Section primarily through their work on committees, including the Programs, Communications, Legislative, and Membership/Nominations Committees. Their work includes creating the annual State and Local Government Law Institute and other networking programs during the year, helping to establish this blog, and continuing to provideContinue reading “State and Local Government Section Council Members Set for 2021 – 2022”

Enforcement powers change for the Public Information Act Compliance Board

By Frank JohnsonDeputy City Attorney, City of Gaithersburg The General Assembly made some significant changes to the Public Information Act (Md. Code Ann., General Provisions, Sec. 4-101 et seq.) this year. First, as part of the changes related to police reform, Senate Bill 178 removed the confidentiality of certain police personnel records, now allowing disclosureContinue reading “Enforcement powers change for the Public Information Act Compliance Board”

Law Institute moves to May 2022

By Frank JohnsonDeputy City Attorney, City of Gaithersburg The State and Local Government Section Council, in its first remote meeting in July, decided to move the annual Law Institute from fall (usually late October) to the spring. While the Institute had originally been moved to the fall to allow better budget planning for the monthsContinue reading “Law Institute moves to May 2022”