The Troubling Turn in State Preemption: The Assault on Progressive Cities and How Cities Can Respond 

Author(s): 
Richard Briffault, Nestor Davidson, Paul A. Diller, Olatunde Johnson, and Richard C. Schragger
Publication Date: 
September 28, 2017

Increasingly, states are attempting to shut down local innovation through preemptive legislation that overrides local lawmaking. Whether threatening to withhold state funding from sanctuary cities, precluding civil rights protections for LGBT citizens, or prohibiting cities from raising the minimum wage for their workers, these efforts are stifling local democracy. In some cases, preemption efforts have even gone so far as to impose criminal liability on city officials who merely vote for progressive legal reforms. This Issue Brief surveys the landscape of state preemption and offers “possibilities for strengthening home rule to advance progressive local policymaking at a moment when cities increasingly stand on the front lines of economic justice, civil rights, sustainable development, and so many other critical policy domains.”  

Read the Issue Brief here.