Earlier this month, in a case challenging the denial of permits to erect a homeless “tent city” in front of a former elementary school in the Uptown neighborhood of Chicago, a federal magistrate judge dismissed the organizers’ First Amendment claim.  While one count of the plaintiffs’ complaint will move forward, the order dismisses all of the plaintiffs’ federal claims. View Full Post
Colorado Court of Appeals:  Court Should Defer to City Council’s Code Interpretations, But No Bond for Rule 106 Defendants Stor-N-Lock’s facility located immediately adjacent to the proposed self-storage facility. Source: Yelp. In May, the Colorado Court of Appeals upheld the City of Thornton’s approval of a specific use permit for a self-storage facility against a challenge brought by a competitor self-storage facility.  View Full Post
In Case Involving a Gentlemen’s Playground and a Rocky Mount, Sexually Oriented Business Licensing Scheme is Found to (Mostly) Satisfy First Amendment Scrutiny The Gentleman’s Playground in Rocky Mount, North Carolina. Source: Yelp This post was authored by Otten Johnson summer associate Lindsay Lyda.  Lindsay is a rising third-year law student at the University of Colorado Law School. A few weeks ago, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a district court’s summary judgment order upholding Rocky Mount, North Carolina’s sexually-oriented business regulations against a First Amendment challenge by an exotic dance club known as “The Gentlemen’s Playground.”  As this is a professional blog, we will refrain from further commentary on the combination of the parties’ names, but invite our readers to conjure up whatever creative taglines come to mind. View Full Post
A Mime, A Stick Balloon Artist, A Puppeteer, and Others Win in Ocean City Boardwalk Regulation Case The Ocean City boardwalk. Source: Bill Price III, from Wikimedia Commons. This post was authored by Otten Johnson summer associate Chelsea Marx.  Chelsea is a rising third-year law student at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law. Just in time for summer, the federal district court in Maryland has determined that the show must go on for a group of performance artists challenging an ordinance restricting public performance on the Ocean City boardwalk.  View Full Post
Indianapolis Prevails (Again) In Adult Business Case A Hustler Hollywood store in Fresno, California. Source: KSFN. Last month, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a district court’s denial of an adult business’s motion for preliminary injunction against Indianapolis.  The appeals court found that the business, Hustler Hollywood (HH), was unlikely to prevail on the merits of its as-applied First Amendment claim against the city. View Full Post
Supreme Court Punts on Free Speech Claim in Wedding Cake Case, But Justice Thomas Spots Trouble on the Food Presentation Horizon Jack Phillips of Masterpiece Cakeshop. Source: Reuters. While the Rocky Mountain Sign Blog is geared toward issues that involve free speech and land use law, we geek out about any Supreme Court case that addresses First Amendment issues, even those outside of our weird little land use world.  View Full Post
Land of Enchantment?  Court Says Display of Marijuana is First Amendment-Protected, But Time Will Tell Whether State Fair Can Prohibit It New Mexico state fair. Source: Beate Sass, https://beatesass.wordpress.com/2013/09/21/the-new-mexico-state-fair/. Green chile is undoubtedly a popular product at the New Mexico State Fair.  But can another “green” product—medicinal marijuana—be displayed at the state fair?  That question now rests with a federal district court. View Full Post