1. Meet the Nine Usurpers in Black Robes - by Erin Aitcheson
The newly handed-down Supreme Court ruling on the Affordable Care Act has garnered a great deal of debate. The 6-3 vote in favor of the administration does nothing to fix the unworkable flaws that remain and continue to largely define Obamacare. No matter the lens used to view the ACA, the prognosis is bad.
Back in 2012, Justice Roberts infamously interpreted the ACA penalty as a tax. Once again Roberts’ interpretive skills “saved” the day and the self-defeating piece of legislation much to the blatant disregard of the Constitution and the American people. Read More here...
2. Delaware Passes Testing Opt-Out Bill - by Logan Albright
Last week, Delaware became the latest in growing number of states to push for the ability of parents to opt their children out of the Smarter Balanced Assessment tests. These tests were implemented as part of the increasingly unpopular Common Core education standards, but parents and teachers alike have been dissatisfied with the amount of time and focus going into test preparation as opposed to more traditional teaching, involving individualized interaction between teachers and students.
Delaware’s HB 50 - surprisingly sponsored by a Democrat - cleared the state Senate and now only awaits a signature from the governor. The bill would codify that parents may elect to opt their children out of the tests, and specifies that there will be no academic or disciplinary consequences for students who make this decision. This comes on the heels of a similar bill recently signed into law by Oregon’s Governor Kate Brown, indicating the growth of a larger opt-out movement among frustrated parents. Read more here...
4. The Cost of "Free" Community College - by Sarah Gompper
A few months ago President Obama announced his hope that “two years of college becomes as free and universal in America as high school is today.” Since then, various cities around the country have begun to implement programs that follow the president’s vision.
On June 23, the District of Columbia City Council held a hearing on Bill 21-55, the proposed Community College for All Scholarship Amendment Act of 2015. The city council writes:
The stated purpose of Bill 21-55 is to establish a scholarship program to provide free tuition and the cost of mandatory fees to students enrolled at the University of the District of Columbia Community College, and to require the University of the District of Columbia Community College to develop, adopt, and implement the scholarship program. Read more here...5. Louisiana Parish Could Damage Uber's Business Model - by Remso Martinez
Uber, the app-based ridesharing service based in San Francisco, has caused a stir in a local New Orleans suburb, where Attorney Deborah Foshee began investigating as to whether or not the taxi service can legally operate its vehicles in Jefferson Parish. According to a recent Associated Press article:
Foshee emailed council members Saturday, saying Uber Technologies Inc. lacks licensing, certificates and authority to operate in Jefferson Parish...Council members and Parish President John Young’s administration “have gone to great length to facilitate Uber’s legal entry into the market,” Foshee wrote. “Any attempt to enter the market in violation of current law would subject Uber to a cease and desist order." Read more here...
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6. Sky Full of Drones? Oversight and Government Reform Committee Talks Innovation Safety and Property - by Sarah Gompper
On June 17th, the US House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Government Reform held a hearing on drones to discuss the future of the developing technology. The general tone was one of excitement at the prospect of innovation, yet confusion over changing times, technological challenges, and a whole wave of new regulation and common law which is sure to become pressingly relevant in the near future.
Drones have promising possibility if used appropriately; however, there are significant concerns regarding safety and privacy. Possible commercial uses of drones include faster shipping, efficient inspection of infrastructure, and searching for missing persons. While such potential is exciting, enthusiasm is mediated by risks of privacy violations if law enforcement starts using drones for surveillance or if private drones begin whizzing through backyards. Read more here...
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