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States brief ~ CT brings first challenge to new Energy Policy Act

[JURIST] Leading Monday's states brief, Connecticut has became the first state to challenge the new federal Energy Policy Act [JURIST report], allowing the developers of power projects to appeal directly to the federal government when state officials deny or delay permits. Attorney General Richard Blumenthal [AG press release] filed a motion to dismiss a federal petition filed by the backers of the proposed Islander East Pipeline Project [website], saying the law undermines states' environmental autonomy and violates the 11th Amendment of the US Constitution, which provides states with immunity from lawsuits by private parties. The state Department of Environmental Protection denied Islander East Pipeline's water quality permit in 2004 and the issue has been tied up in state courts and regulatory agencies since. AP has more.

In other state legal news ...

  • The Pennsylvania state troopers union Monday filed suit in state court, alleging that the outsourcing of background checks for both gambling companies and vendors that supply slots parlors violates the 2004 state law [text] legalizing slot machines because that law gives state police the authority to conduct all background checks. The union also argued that allowing the state Gaming Control Board [official website] oversight of what groups conduct background checks is a violation of separation of powers. Last month the board authorized negotiations for no-bid contracts with three firms and sought other firms through competitive bidding. AP has more.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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