Jan. 29 Conference To Examine Local Government Law
January 28, 2005--
The structural soundness of America’s local government law will be examined at a conference at the University of Virginia’s School of Law on Saturday, Jan. 29, in Caplin Pavilion.
Legal experts from across the country will convene to discuss the implications of such common problems as suburban sprawl and the decay of urban centers, the privatization of public services through homeowners’ associations, the viability of regional governmental organizations, the effect of local government actions on American constitutional principles and the innovations localities have made in responding to such pressures.
The student-run conference, “Democracy in Action? The Law and Politics of Local Governance,” is sponsored by the Journal of Law and Politics.
The day opens at 8:30 a.m. with a panel discussion, “Federalism, Localism and Constitutionalism.” Among the discussion points: Are local governments superior to state and federal government in shaping the constitutional principles governing people’s lives? Does there need to be a more robust constitutional localism, or does current constitutional doctrine adequately allocate power among the three levels of government?
Panelists include Lynn A. Baker, Frederick M. Baron Professor of Law at the University of Texas; Roderick M. Hills, Jr., professor of law at the University of Michigan; Michael Libonati, Laura H. Carnell Professor of Law at Temple University; Mark D. Rosen, associate professor of law at the Chicago-Kent College of Law; and Richard C. Schragger, associate professor of law at U.Va.
The second session, from 10:15 to 11:45 a.m, is titled “Shape of the City: Suburbanization and Urban Sprawl,” and will address the questions of.what do cities look like in an age of suburban sprawl and the decay of the urban core? and How do people conceive their relationships to them?
Panelists include David Barron, professor of law at Harvard University; Vicki L. Been, Elihu Root Professor of Law at New York University; Sheryll D. Cashin, professor of law at Georgetown University; William A. Fischel, Patricia F. and William B. Hale ’44 Professor in Arts and Sciences at Dartmouth College; Gerald E. Frug, Louis D. Brandeis Professor of Law at Harvard University; and Georgette Chapman Poindexter, David B. Ford Professor of Real Estate at the University of Pennsylvania.
The afternoon session opens with a discussion of the “Regional Solution,” from12:45 p.m. to 2:15 p.m. Among the issues: Regional government has been proposed as a solution to the disparate concentration of wealth and poverty in localities, but will regionalism provide relief, or do more harm than good?
Panelists include Keith Aoki, Philip H. Knight Professor of Law at the University of Oregon ; William W. Buzbee, professor of law at Emory University; Clayton P. Gillette, vice dean and Max E. Greenberg Professor of Contract Law at New York University; Janice C. Griffith, professor of law at Georgia State University; and Peter W. Salsich, Jr., McDonnell Professor of Justice in American Society at St. Louis University.
A discussion titled “Privatization of Public Services” will be held from 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. and will look at private, sublocal institutions, such as homeowners’ associations, which are increasingly occupying the space once monopolized by local government. How have these institutions affected the way citizens understand their communities? Have these institutions replaced the role of local government in the lives of local citizens, or are the two complimentary? Should these institutions be suppressed or is that futile due to the power of the market economy?
Panelists include Carlos A. Ball, professor of law at Penn State University; Jack M. Beermann, professor of law at Boston University; David L. Callies, Benjamin A. Kudo Professor of Law at the University of Hawaii; and Laurie Reynolds, professor of law at University of Illinois.
The afternoon closes with “Left Behind: The Status of American Cities.” from 4:15 p.m. to 5:45 p.m. The panel will discuss whether local government is a viable vehicle to resolve the social, economic and political ills that plague urban centers.
Panelists include Richard Briffault, vice dean and Joseph P. Chamberlain Professor of Legislation at Columbia University; Lee Anne Fennell, associate professor and associate director of the Illinois Program in Law and Economics at the University of Illinois; Audrey McFarlane, associate professor of law at the University of Baltimore; Wendell Pritchett, assistant professor of law at the University of Pennsylvania; and Michael Selmi, professor of law at George Washington University.
Admission is free and open to the public. For a schedule of panels and other details, check the conference’s Web site at www.student.virginia.edu/~jalopy.
Contact: Matt Kelly, (434) 924-7291