Latest updates on N.C. legislative presumption 8/8/17

By L. Michael Zinser, The Zinser Law Firm

As previously reported, North Carolina newspapers have been fighting to maintain the tremendous advantage they have enjoyed in Workers' Compensation legislation for the last 20 years, in the form of a legislative presumption of independent contractor status for newspaper carriers.

At the very end of the legislative session on June 28, a modified version of H.B. 205 passed in both Houses. This bill would have removed the legislative presumption. Fortunately, on July 17, Governor Roy Cooper vetoed the new legislation.

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New website tracks press freedom violations in United States 8/8/17

More than 20 press freedom organizations have joined together to launch the U.S. Press Freedom Tracker, a new nonpartisan website dedicated to documenting press freedom abuses across the United States.

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DOJ's announcement on leaks is 'deeply troubling' 8/7/17

On Friday, United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the Department of Justice would increase its pursuit of investigations into unauthorized disclosures. In his statement, he said he would also revisit internal DOJ guidelines that address how and when federal prosecutors can use subpoenas and other tools to obtain the records of journalists as a part of these investigations.

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U.S. Department of Labor overtime rule update 8/1/17

By L. Michael Zinser, The Zinser Law Firm

The DOL is inviting comments on the 2016 revisions to white collar exemption regulations. Here are specific questions that will be addressed.

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NC governor vetoes bill to remove independent contractor presumption 7/18/17

By L. Michael Zinser, The Zinser Law Firm

On Monday, July 17, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper vetoed legislation that would have removed the independent contractor presumption that the state's newspaper industry has enjoyed for the last 20 years. As previously reported, the presumption was removed on June 28 when a modified version of House Bill 205 passed in a midnight session of the Legislature.

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President Trump moves to fill two NLRB vacancies 7/11/17

By L. Michael Zinser, The Zinser Law Firm

On June 28 President Trump formally nominated both Marvin Kaplan and William Emmanuel to fill the two Republican vacancies on the National Labor Relations Board. At the present time, the NLRB has a 2-to-1 pro-union, Democratic majority. These two nominees, once confirmed, will then shift the Board to a 3-to-2 Republican majority.

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North Carolina newspapers lose legislative presumption 7/10/17

By L. Michael Zinser, The Zinser Law Firm

Passage of a new bill removes a tremendous advantage North Carolina newspapers have enjoyed in Worker's Compensation litigation for nearly two decades.

The bill removes a legislative presumption of independent contractor status for newspaper carriers under the state's Workers' Compensation law.

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Lexington passes ordinance that newspaper vows to fight 3/6/17

By Beth Musgrave, bmusgrave@herald-leader.com

The Lexington Urban County Council approved an ordinance recently that would require businesses to put unsolicited fliers and circulars on doorsteps or mail slots or face fines.

The 9-5 vote came despite a warning from the Herald-Leader that it would sue the merged government if the ordinance was passed.

Rufus Friday, president and publisher of the Herald-Leader, said after the vote that he will "aggressively defend the Lexington Herald-Leader's First Amendment rights, which does include any infringement on the press' distribution rights."

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Reporters Committee releases report on Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch 2/6/17

U.S. Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch does not have an extensive history of cases involving free speech, free press and freedom of information issues, but the opinions he authored or joined during his more than 10 years on the Tenth Circuit that do touch upon those issues reflect the application of well-established First Amendment principles in a consistent way, according to a report on his news-media related decisions released by the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press.

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A Republican president can reassert management rights 11/15/16

By L. Michael Zinser, The Zinser Law Firm

Donald Trump will have the ability to impact several key federal government agencies, including the National Labor Relations Board and the U.S. Department of Labor.

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