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From Fracking Bans To Paid Sick Leave: How States Are Overruling Local Laws

Publication Date: 4/6/2016
  • Author:Fresh Air
  • Publication:NPR

PR Watch's Lisa Graves says that states can overrule local laws, and that legislatures are increasingly using preemption to stop things like minimum wage increases and protections for LGBT people.

This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross. The North Carolina state legislature sparked a national controversy recently when it acted to overturn a law passed by the City Council in Charlotte, N.C. that banned discrimination against LGBTQ people. Our guest, Lisa Graves, says this move by the North Carolina Legislature is part of an increasingly common pattern in which towns and cities pass laws ranging from bans on fracking to increasing the minimum wage only to have their state legislature pass a law that overrules the local ordinance.

Lisa Graves is executive director of the Center for Media and Democracy. The center has been tracking this new trend of preemption laws on their online news journal, PR Watch. The center describes itself as a watchdog organization that conducts in-depth investigations into corruption and the undue influence of corporations on media and democracy...