PLF declares war on Competitor’s Veto laws

This morning, PLF is announcing its new nationwide campaign against “Certificate of Convenience and Necessity” laws. These are licensing requirements that apply to taxi and limo companies, moving companies, ambulances, even car dealerships and hospitals. We call these laws “Competitor’s Veto” … Continue reading

You shouldn’t have to ask your competitors for permission to start a business

Should existing businesses have the power to veto new enterprises?  Nevada thinks so.  We don’t. Ron and Danell Perlman are the owner-operators of Reno Tahoe Limousine, based in Reno, Nevada.  They own seven limousines that they use for trips within … Continue reading

You’re in the Army now: don’t follow the rules

Under the Clean Water Act, the United States Army Corps of Engineers regulates wetlands throughout the nation.  Owners must obtain a permit from the Corps to develop, build upon, or otherwise alter their properties, if those properties contain “jurisdictional wetlands.”  The Corps’ rules specifically exclude from the permitting requirement properties that are separated from other wetlands by man-made barriers, such as roads or dikes.  The problem:  in an effort to expand its authority, the Corps is ignoring the regulatory exclusion.

Representing a small Alaska company, Universal Welding, PLF filed a lawsuit last week against the Corps for requiring the company to obtain a permit to expand operations on its property, which is separated from a jurisdictional wetland by a county-owned public road.  A clearer man-made barrier could not exist.  Accordingly, Universal Welding’s property in Fairbanks, Alaska, qualifies for the regulatory exclusion.

But the Corps says it is not bound by its own rules and can require Universal Welding to obtain a permit.  Does the Corps care that it is ignoring the rules?  No. It has drafted lawyers from the United States Department of Justice in Washington, D.C. to defend against PLF’s lawsuit, which is intended to enforce the rule of law against a bloated government bureaucracy seeking to impose its will in every corner of the nation under the guise of enforcing the Clean Water Act.  We will meet them in court.  Our motion for summary judgment can be found here:  MSJ – Universal Welding.

Can a legal, non-defective product be a public nuisance?

In the last decade, California was one of a group of states and cities that sued sellers and manufacturers of lead paint on the theory that those companies had contributed to a “public nuisance.” Public nuisance is a very vague … Continue reading

Court denies motion to dismiss PLF’s suit challenging sign ban

Yesterday, the United States Eastern District of Virginia denied the City of Alexandria’s motion to dismiss Pacific Legal Foundation’s lawsuit in McLean v. City of Alexandria. The court’s opinion made clear that regardless of whether the City decides to later … Continue reading

Testimony in Montana: the Competitor’s Veto is unconstitutional

Today I testified to the Montana Legislature’s House Transportation Committee about the unconstitutionality of their Competitor’s Veto law—the same law we challenged in court yesterday.  The Committee is considering amending that law and eliminating the Competitor’s Veto for the taxi industry. … Continue reading

City of Alexandria tries to deny client’s day in court

Yesterday, we had our hearing on the City of Alexandria’s motion to dismiss in McLean v. City of Alexandria. In this case, we are challenging the constitutionality of a City ordinance that makes it illegal to advertise a car for sale while … Continue reading

Montana to consider amending its Competitor’s Veto Law

I’ll be testifying in front of the Montana House of Representatives Transportation Committee this Friday at 3 pm to talk about Competitor’s Veto laws and the right to earn a living.  You can stream that hearing live on Friday here. … Continue reading