To start the process of updating the regulations implementing Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, a seminal disability civil rights law that provides protections to elementary, secondary, and postsecondary students, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has announced that it will solicit public recommendations from students and their advocates and hold listening sessions to determine ways to improve the current regulations to achieve the present-day needs of America’s students with disabilities.
On Wednesday, April 6, 2022, the Biden Administration announced its most severe and wide-ranging economic sanctions measures against Russia to date, banning new investment in the Country and cutting off its largest banks and state-owned enterprises from the world financial markets.
On March 9, 2022, US President Joe Biden signed an unprecedented executive order directing federal agencies to coordinate their approach to clarifying cryptocurrency regulations. Sighs of relief were heard across the industry from those who feared a major blow from the White House.
On June 8, 2022, the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) issued a new Regulatory Guidance, setting foundational criterial for USD-backed stablecoins used by DFS-regulated entities. This represents the first U.S. state agency to regulate issuers of stablecoins. Generally, issuers that currently issue U.S.-dollar-backed stablecoins under DFS supervision are expected to come into compliance with the Regulatory Guidance within three months. This GT Alert summarizes the Regulatory Guidance.
On June 7, 2022, U.S. Sens. Cynthia Lummis (R-WY) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) introduced the Lummis-Gillibrand Responsible Financial Innovation Act (RFIA), a bill that would create the first comprehensive regulatory framework of digital assets in the United States.
On May 26th, the EPA released an update of its Legal Tools to Advance Environmental justice – a compilation of the legal authorities it relies upon to protect public health and the environment for all persons in EJ and all communities.
On April 26, 2022, Governor Ron DeSantis signed a proclamation calling on the Florida Legislature to convene for a special session in response to Florida’s current property insurance market. The formal call was to consider legislation related to property insurance, reinsurance, changes to the Florida building code to improve affordability of property insurance, the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation, civil remedies, and appropriations. The proclamation called for the special session to convene from May 23 through May 27, but the Legislature was able to complete their work in only three days and adjourned Sine Die on May 25.
Accuracy in contractor proposal representations and cybersecurity compliance remains pressing, as demonstrated by an April 2021 settlement under the False Claims Act (FCA). In a previous alert, we noted that contractor representations of cybersecurity compliance/capabilities represent a fertile ground for bid protests. In this GT Alert, we highlight how the Department of Justice (DOJ) Cyber Fraud Initiative and qui tam actions under the FCA represent significant enforcement mechanisms that raise the stakes for non-compliance with evolving cybersecurity requirements applicable to contractors and grant recipients.
On May 16, 2022, the United States Supreme Court ruled that limiting the repayment of candidate loans to their own campaign to $250,000 (codified under 52 U.S.C. § 30116(j)) is unconstitutional. The Plaintiffs, Ted Cruz for Senate and Senator Ted Cruz, filed suit against the Federal Election Commission (“FEC”), stating that the repayment limitation unconstitutionally infringes the First Amendment rights of the Senator, the Campaign, and any individuals who might seek to make post-election contributions.
The importance of accuracy in contractor proposal representations regarding cybersecurity compliance/capabilities, and the increasing number of bid protests based on alleged proposal inaccuracies regarding the same, is demonstrated in Connected Global Solutions, LLC v. United States (Fed. Cl. Apr. 21, 2022).
The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) General Counsel’s office issued a memorandum reiterating the rights of immigrant workers under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). Continuing its aggressive approach to expanding legal protections for workers and labor unions, the General Counsel’s office of the NLRB issued Memorandum OM 22-09, reiterating NLRB policy on workers’ rights to access the NLRB collective bargaining and remedial procedures regardless of immigration status, without fear of reprisals from their employers or the federal government.
Effective January 1, 2023, Washington employers with at least 15 employees must affirmatively disclose the wage scale or salary range and a general description of all benefits and other compensation being offered when posting job openings, regardless of whether such information is requested by the applicant.
While the United States awaits the Supreme Court’s ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson, which may overturn Roe v. Wade and eliminate the federal standard for abortion access, some states are considering setting their own standards that would ban or protect the medical procedure.
As volatility in the cryptocurrency market has increased, regulators in the United States and around the world have indicated a willingness to impose tougher compliance requirements related to crypto assets. As a result, there is an increasing likelihood that companies that hold or deal in crypto assets may be subject to additional regulations in the coming years.
Manufacturers in the U.S. should take note of a new request for comment from the United States Trade Representative as a lack of support may lead to removal of the tariffs and surge in unfairly priced imports.
On May 18, 2022, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit issued its decision in Jarkesy v. Securities and Exchange Comm’n, in which it examined the constitutionality of an agency civil money penalty enforcement proceeding.
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