Law, Legislation & Policy

Housed at Boston University School of Law, Dome is a valuable resource for news, analysis, and opinion on legislation and public policy. Dome is staffed by students of BU Law’s various legislation clinics. Dome features work contributed by staff members, scholars, practitioners, and law students interested in legislation and public policy.

The Push and Pull of Municipal Fossil Fuel Bans in Massachusetts

By Hayley Kallfelz
August 11th, 2023 in Administrative Law, Analysis, Environmental Law, Local Legislation, State Legislation.

In 2019, Brookline, Massachusetts became the first municipality outside of California to ban fossil fuels in new construction.  The move was part of a growing movement among cities and towns to ban fossil fuel infrastructure, such as hookups for oil or natural gas use, in newly constructed buildings.  Fossil fuel... More

End the Request: It’s Time for Boston’s Biggest Landowners to Pay Their Fair Share

By Alison Kimball
August 11th, 2023 in Analysis, Local Legislation, State Legislation.

For the second time, Massachusetts State Representative Erika Uyterhoeven (D-Somerville) filed a bill concerning payments in lieu of taxes to cities and towns. This bill would strengthen and codify a Boston program, which requests payment from certain institutions that do not pay property taxes. It is important that this bill... More

Congestion Pricing: Addressing The True Cost of Cars

By Peter Kaplan
August 10th, 2023 in Administrative Law, Analysis, Environmental Law, Federal Legislation, Local Legislation.

One of the most heartening social trends of the last couple of years has been a recognition of the true costs of car use in cities. Whether approaching it from the stance of climate change, health effects from air quality, physical safety on the roads, or social fragmentation from structures... More

Revenge Porn and Deep Fake Technology: The Latest Iteration of Online Abuse

By Kara Kelleher
August 10th, 2023 in Analysis, Criminal Law, Federal Legislation, State Legislation.

Revenge Porn The rise of the digital age has brought many advancements to our society. But it has also enabled new forms of online harassment and abuse. Revenge porn (otherwise referred to as image-based sexual abuse or nonconsensual pornography) is a type of gender-based abuse in which sexually explicit photos or... More

Accelerated Public Health Modernization in Massachusetts

By Shannon Gonick
March 23rd, 2023 in Health Law, Local Legislation, State Legislation.

Amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and national movements for public health modernization, the Massachusetts Legislature tried to strengthen the Commonwealth’s public health during the summer of 2022. The Statewide Accelerated Public Health for Every Community Act (H.5014) (SAPHE 2.0) would have required local boards of health and regional health districts... More