Although not strictly a part of our legal
practice, our co-founding partner has professional experience in
public relations and can advise our clients about techniques to
get their public policy message in print and on the broadcast media.
We work with our clients to convert their public reports (such as
tax returns, lobby reports, state charity reports) into documents
that help present their side of the story.
Public Policy Litigation
Public policy litigation is a powerful tool
that must be coordinated with an organization’s other advocacy
activities. We have significant experience in drafting court filings,
discovery materials, taking depositions, and filing “Friend
of the Court” briefs to help advance the public policy mission
of our clients.
Partner James Lacy has recently represented
the California slate mail publishers in two significant cases. The
first case, decided in 2001, challenged the legality of Proposition
208, which imposed restrictions on the free speech of slate card
publishers. Mr. Lacy and his co-counsel won this case against the
Fair Political Practices Commission in federal district court on
first amendment grounds, and certain provisions of Proposition 208
that violated the Constitution were invalidated.
In 2002, Mr. Lacy’s second case was
decided, challenging the legality of yet another restriction on
slate mail publishing imposed by the newly-passed Proposition 34.
Levine v. Fair Political Practices Commission, 222 F.Supp. 2d 1182
(E.D.Cal. 2002). Again, Mr. Lacy and his co-counsel won the case
against the Fair Political Practices Commission in federal district
court on first amendment grounds, and provisions of Proposition
34 that violated the Constitution were invalidated.
In 2000, Mr. Lacy represented three
members of a nonprofit organization from Mission Viejo, California
who claimed that their rights under the California sunshine act,
the Brown Act, had been violated. In a dramatic two-day trial, Mr.
Lacy won a substantial victory and the City of Mission Viejo was
found to have violated the Brown Act.