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Chief Justice Announces Court Order on Donor Disclosures

Last week, U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts announced a court order that nullifies the Federal Election Commission’s (“FEC”) regulation allowing social welfare nonprofit donors to be anonymous. Roberts’ order blocked a lower court order in a case concerning Crossroads GPS, a politically active 501(c)(4) organization. The federal district judge overseeing the case ruled that the FEC regulation weakens the congressional goal of disclosing where donations to federal political campaigns originate. The chief justice, however, ruled that the Crossroads GPS case is stayed until further order. More on Chief Justice Roberts’ court order is available on the SCOTUSblog website.

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Supreme Court Tightens Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Protections

In a unanimous ruling, the Supreme Court narrowed the definition of a whistleblower under the Dodd-Frank Act. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second, Fifth and Ninth Circuits had different rulings over the interpretation of the whistleblower protections, but the Supreme Court ultimately decided on a narrow definition. The decision stems from the case of Digital Realty Trust v. Somers, which involved the termination of former Digital Realty Trust vice president Paul Somers after he reported possible violations to management. Somers claimed that the Dodd-Frank whistleblower protections, which bar companies from retaliating against employees who report misconduct under certain. Read More.

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SBA Releases its Small Business Contracting Scorecard

On May 18, 2017, the Small Business Administration (“SBA”) released its annual small business contracting scorecard. This scorecard is a measure of how selected agencies are doing in regard to meeting their small business contracting goals. It should be noted that the scorecard only measures the performance of 24 agencies. Thus, it does not evaluate how all agencies are doing in meeting their small business goals. As described by the SBA, the annual Scorecard is an assessment tool which measures: (1) how well federal agencies reach their small business and socio-economic prime contracting and subcontracting goals; and (2) agency-specific progress. Read More.

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Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Protections Headed to Supreme Court

This October, the U.S. Supreme Court plans to review whistleblower protections under the Dodd-Frank Act. Announced on June 26, the decision to hear the case of Somers v. Digital Realty Trust will resolve who is protected from possible retaliation under the reform law. The case revolves around former Vice President Paul Somers of Digital Realty Trust Inc., who was fired after reporting to management potential securities law violations. Somers sued Digital Realty Trust Inc. for allegedly violating Dodd-Frank’s whistleblower rules, but the dispute centers on where he initially reported the transgression. Digital Realty’s lawyers contended that since Somers’ concerns were. Read More.

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