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Governor Brown Signs Renewable Energy Initiative SB100

Energy & Natural Resources
09/10/2018 - By: Stanley Lutz

Governor Brown just signed a renewable energy initiative passed by the California legislature and known as SB100 that sets a goal of phasing out fossil fuels from the state’s energy portfolio by 2045.  That initiative requires California’s utilities to utilize specific renewable resources to generate 60 percent of their portfolio by 2030, 10 percent higher …

New Mexico Public Regulation Commission Denies SunZia’s Proposed $2 Billion High-voltage Transmission Project

Energy & Natural Resources
09/06/2018 - By: Jeffrey Albright

On September 5, 2018, by a 4-0 vote, the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission denied SunZia’s proposed $2 billion high-voltage transmission project through seven counties in southern New Mexico.  The Commission relied heavily on the hearing examiner’s recommended decision which found that the location and route for the transmission line lacked sufficient specificity and did …

Is Colorado the Next Front in the PURPA Wars?

Energy & Natural Resources
09/04/2018 - By: Thomas Dougherty

In 1978, the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act (PURPA) was signed into law with the overall goals of promoting energy conservation and encouraging the development of domestic renewable energy resources.  Among other mechanisms, PURPA sought to accomplish these goals through the recognition of a new class of generating facilities – Qualifying Facilities (QF).  In general, …

Apple Takes Tougher Stance on Gambling Apps

Commercial Gaming
08/14/2018 - By: Karl Rutledge

Interesting story regarding Apple’s crackdown on gambling-related apps: Click here to read the story. As noted in the article, the ban appears to be, at least initially, a result of Norway requesting that Apple ban all gambling apps from its app store in that country. If you have questions regarding this or need legal assistance in …

U.S. Credit Cards Hedging on Sports Betting

Commercial Gaming
08/10/2018 - By: Glenn Light, Karl Rutledge, Mary Tran

Months after the momentous U.S. Supreme Court decision permitting states to regulate sports betting, and the subsequent introduction of sports betting in several states (including DraftKings’ launch of the first mobile sports betting app in New Jersey) the focus now shifts to if and how U.S. credit card issuers will help fund such activities. Currently, …

Alternative Energy Production Leads to Unexpected Consequences

Energy & Natural Resources
08/08/2018 - By: Jeffrey Albright

As wind and solar energy becomes more economical and states pass legislation requiring energy producing companies to have greater percentages of renewable energy as part of their portfolios, unexpected consequences are occurring.  In an article by Bloomberg LP on August 7, 2018, recent data shows that the amount of electricity being generated exceeds demand during …

States Team Up to Support and Protect the Outdoors and the $900 Billion Industry It Creates

Sports & Outdoor Recreation
08/02/2018 - By: Dieter Raemdonck

Last week, Colorado and seven other states (Montana, North Carolina, Oregon, Utah, Vermont, Washington, and Wyoming)  signed the “Confluence Accords” – a treaty of sorts that commits the signors to various efforts to grow the outdoor recreation economy. The agreement dictates that the states adopt common principles aimed at: public education and promotion of the …

GDPR Aftermath: The Effect of the EU’s Data Protection Regulation on UDRP and Related Proceedings

Intellectual Property
08/01/2018 - By: Gary Nelson, Sami Schilly

On May 25, 2018, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) took full effect across the countries of the European Union, with unknown (and highly anticipated) effects on UDRP and related proceedings. In the days leading up to May 25, 2018, many trademark owners prepared and filed UDRP complaints for most, if not all, troublesome domain …

Blockchain: What is it and can I protect it via patents?

Intellectual Property
07/31/2018 - By: Josephine Chang

What is Blockchain? Blockchain technology, some might argue, is the most important technological innovation since the Internet. Those impacted by this technology are not only companies, but also everyday people. Thus, everyone should try to have a basic understanding of what blockchain is, and how one might benefit from it. The inventor of the blockchain …

Partner and Chair of Commercial Gaming Group, Karl Rutledge, Participates in Roundtable Discussion

Commercial Gaming
06/15/2018 - By: Karl Rutledge

On January 17, 2018, Partner and Chair of Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie’s Commercial Gaming group, Karl Rutledge,  along with other leaders in the gaming industry, participated in a roundtable discussion hosted by Gaming Law Review which explored the important debate relative to the concepts of skill and chance. To read the full transcript of the …

Nevada State Bar Appoints Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie Attorney as Member of Executive Committee, Gaming Law Section

Commercial Gaming
06/14/2018 - By: Karl Rutledge

Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie has announced Karl Rutledge, a partner in the firm’s Las Vegas office and chair of the firm’s gaming industry practice, has been elected as a member of the Executive Committee of the Gaming Law Section for the Nevada State Bar. “Karl is a leader in the field of gaming and administrative …

PTAB Proposal on Claim Construction Would Align with Federal Courts, ITC

Intellectual Property
05/30/2018 - By: Lauren Schneider

In the aftermath of the Oil States and SAS Supreme Court decisions, the PTO’s proposal to adopt the Phillips standard for claim construction brings a small measure of relief for universities and research institutions.  The “broadest reasonable interpretation” claim construction standard currently used by the PTAB in deciding IPRs may open the instituted claims to challenge by a larger body of …

SAS Decision Could Have Chilling Effect on University Licensing

Intellectual Property
05/25/2018 - By: Lauren Schneider

The Supreme Court’s decision in SAS Institute v. Iancu represents yet another blow to patent owners, but is an especially troublesome complication for universities and research institutions trying to generate licensing revenue. As obtaining a decision of invalidity may be easier in an inter partes review (IPR) in front of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) than …

New Appeals Process for Challenging Administrative Decisions Made by State Agencies in Arizona

Energy & Natural Resources
05/24/2018 - By: Marla Hudgens

On April 11, 2018, Arizona Governor Doug Ducey signed into law HB 2238. The Bill clarifies the appellate landscape for individuals and businesses challenging administrative decisions made by state agencies. In our blog post from May 7, 2017, we foreshadowed the legislation:  https://blog.lrrc.com/energy/2017/05/07/chevron-deference-arizona/ To recap, under federal law, if a statute or statutory term is …

Colorado Energy and Utilities Legislation

Energy & Natural Resources

Winners and Losers in the 2018 Colorado General Assembly The warm weather has returned, spring sports are in full swing, and the Colorado General Assembly has adjourned for 2018. That means it’s time to take a look at the scorecard and review the energy and utilities related issues that won and lost this legislative season. …

EPA Seeks Overhaul of Ozone NAAQS

Energy & Natural Resources
05/16/2018 - By: Dietrich Hoefner

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt issued a memorandum on May 9th that directs the agency’s staff to begin a five-year review of the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for Ozone. The Clean Air Act (CAA) requires EPA to periodically review the NAAQS, including both primary and secondary standards, for criteria air pollutants such as ozone …

SCOTUS PASPA Decision

Commercial Gaming
05/15/2018 - By: Karl Rutledge

Early Monday morning, the United States Supreme Court ended a nearly six-year-long legal battle regarding the constitutionality of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (“PASPA”). In doing so, the Court held that PASPA violated the 10th Amendment’s “anti-commandeering” principle, which provides that if the Constitution does not give power to the federal government or …

Court of Appeals Confirms that Arizona Constitution Authorizes Arizona Corporation Commission to Determine Energy Rates

Energy & Natural Resources
05/11/2018 - By: Gregory Harris

Court of Appeals Confirms that Arizona Constitution Authorizes Arizona Corporation Commission to Determine Energy Rates The Arizona Constitution requires that the Arizona Corporation Commission (“Commission”) approve just and reasonable rates, the determination of which is to be evaluated by the Commission. In Freeport Minerals Corporation v. Arizona Corporation Commission, the Court of Appeals upheld rates …

53rd Arizona Legislature – Highlights

Energy & Natural Resources
05/07/2018 - By: Gregory Harris

Early on the morning of May 4, the Arizona Legislature adjourned the Second Regular Session of the 53rd Legislature. No discussion of the work of the recently completed session would be complete without addressing education, education funding and engagement by virtually the entire legislative community.  The Chamber of Commerce, the Governor, the movement, the Legislature, all …

Changes Proposed to Research and Data Used by EPA

Energy & Natural Resources
05/03/2018 - By: Carla Consoli

As recently reported in a number of news outlets, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt has proposed a rule within the EPA that would require the Agency to use research that is publicly available in promulgating new rules alleged to be “scientifically-based.”  This could be an important change to every company over which EPA …

The Value of Goodwill in Trademarks

Intellectual Property
05/03/2018 - By: Emily Bayton

Consumers use brands to make choices, demonstrate loyalty and determine value. A brand’s ultimate goal, from a company perspective, is to accelerate growth and generate value (i.e., goodwill). But what is “goodwill” as it relates to trademarks – how is it tied to trademark selection and does it affect licensing, acquisitions and litigation? Intellectual Property …

Climbing Wall Industry Reaching New Heights Ahead of Annual Summit

Sports & Outdoor Recreation
04/30/2018 - By: Marla Hudgens

The annual Climbing Wall Association (“CWA”) Summit in Loveland, Colorado, kicks off the week of May 14, 2018, with pre-conferences leading up to the premier trade show for the indoor climbing industry on May 17-18th. This show will unlock endless opportunities for indoor rock climbing gyms, product manufacturers, recreation centers and other industry players to …

Arizona Water Permitting Process Updated

Energy & Natural Resources
04/27/2018 - By: Stanley Lutz

Governor Ducey recently signed two bills passed by the Arizona legislature dealing with water quality programs. The first, SB1494 requires the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) to establish an Underground Injection Control (UIC) Permit program. In doing so, the State will assume primacy for UIC permitting under the Safe Drinking Water Act. The ADEQ attempted …

Are You Ready for the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)?

Intellectual Property
04/19/2018 - By: Terry Ahearn, D. Stuart Bartow

The impact will be significant and yes, U.S. businesses will be impacted. GDPR will impact any U.S. company that has a web presence and markets their goods or services to European markets. A recent study by the International Association of Privacy Professionals indicated that Fortune’s Global 500 will spend roughly €7.8 billion to implement GDPR. IAPP also estimates that …

A Friend of the Outdoors: Colorado Governor Hints at Possible Presidential Run

Sports & Outdoor Recreation
04/18/2018 - By: Emily Bayton

Hints on a possible presidential run by Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper could boost attention for outdoor-industry issues in the 2020 campaign. Hickenlooper was in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday to accept the annual “Friend of the Outdoor Industry Award” during the Outdoor Industry Association’s (OIA) annual Capitol Summit and hinted at a possible 2020 presidential run. …

Big Fish Casino Caught Up in Net of Legal Decisions

Commercial Gaming
04/18/2018 - By: Glenn Light, Karl Rutledge

Ninth Circuit decision regarding Big Fish Casino causes some operators to block play in Washington State – sparks potential class actions against operators Big Fish Casino is a social gaming application that provides “freemium” online casino games. Similar to many other providers, users are awarded free chips when they create their account and may obtain …

EPA Centralizes Responsibility for Clean Water Act Jurisdictional Determinations

Energy & Natural Resources
04/10/2018 - By: Dietrich Hoefner

On March 30, 2018, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt issued a memorandum and delegation of authority that move responsibility for the EPA’s role in Clean Water Act Jurisdictional Determinations to EPA’s Assistant Administrator for Water. Responsibility for this role previously resided with regional EPA administrators. Jurisdictional Determinations are a critical aspect of the “dredge-and-fill” permitting requirements under section 404 …

Ordinary Creativity or Common Sense Are Not Enough to Support PTAB's Finding of Obviousness

Intellectual Property
04/10/2018 - By: Constantine "Gus" Marantidis

In a recent opinion [DSS Technology Management. v. Apple Inc., (Fed. Cir. 3/23/2018)], the Federal Circuit iterated that the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (“the Board”) must provide additional rationale beyond “ordinary creativity” and “common sense” for modifying a single reference for rendering a claim invalid. Reference to the “ordinary creativity” of the ordinary skilled …

Federal Circuit Reins In Early Dismissals Based on Patent Liabilities

Intellectual Property
04/05/2018 - By: D. Stuart Bartow

In a span of less than a week in February, the Federal Circuit issued two precedential decisions that may impact the willingness of district courts to resolve patent eligibility issues on early motions. First, on February 8, 2018, the Federal Circuit issued its opinion in Berkheimer v. HP, Inc., vacating a district court’s summary judgment …

Get Your Argument Right the First Time!

Intellectual Property
04/03/2018 - By: Constantine "Gus" Marantidis

In a most recent opinion, the Federal Circuit makes it clear that unless it chooses to exercise its waiver rights under 37 CFR 42.5(b), the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (“the Board”), consistent with the PTO guidelines, is obligated to dismiss new arguments and evidence presented for the first time during the oral argument phase …