Local Government Law



Cities, Counties, and School Districts oversee and regulate many of the most basic aspects of public and economic life. Local entities have enormous powers that are sometimes overlooked in the study of law. This course introduces students to the basic concepts of local government law. The course will cover the following topics:

  1. Local government creation, annexation, and state preemption.
  2. Local government taxation and finance.
  3. Public control of local government through elections, initiatives, and referenda.
  4. Public meetings and public information.
  5. Land use regulations, including general plans, zoning, eminent domain, inverse condemnation, and development agreements.
  6. Public contracting and public-private partnerships.
  7. Government liability
  8. Current topics in municipal law including adult-use cannabis regulation; tobacco regulation, housing and homelessness, and regulation of the "shared economy."
  9. Different forms of local government including general law and charter cities, counties, school districts, special purpose districts, regional governance, and private governance through homeowner associations.