The increased use of preemption has created a demand for legal strategies and research, and resources, including direct technical assistance to help local governments and advocates. To meet these needs, the LSSC serves as a centralized legal resource center providing legal support – through legal research, technical assistance, legal referrals, amicus briefs and other tools, and education – to local officials, advocates, and the field to counter a range of preemption of issues at the local level.
LSSC Research Communications Efforts and Resources
A top LSSC priority is the education of elected officials and advocates about the threat preemption poses to local policy innovation, nuances about the design, implementation, and impacts of preemption, and measures to counter preemption’s potential harms. In addition, these allies also need communications tools and strategies to educate policymakers and the public about preemption’s effects on local policy innovation and framing the issue in ways that resonate across the ideological spectrum.
Education and Outreach Efforts
In the course of this work, it has become very clear that a significant amount of education work is needed to be done to break down geographic and issue silos. Most elected officials considered preemption a locally-driven effort, not realizing that nationally-connected funders, often working through the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and other corporate interests, were pushing the same preemption bills through different state legislatures at the same time. Legislators, unaware of the corrosive effect of preemption on local democracy, were willing to use preemption as a bargaining chip to move bills.