New York City Vans
New York commuter van operators fought their latest round in court on February 21, seeking to strike down protectionist laws that keep them from providing the safe, affordable, efficient transportation so desperately needed in their communities. Appearing on their behalves in New York Appellate Court, Chip Mellor (who only four days before had broken a vertebrae in his back) urged the court to overturn laws designed to keep vans from competing with the woefully inefficient public bus system. A decision is expected later this year. Meanwhile, thanks to IJ’s earlier success in this case, several hundred new vans are now on the streets taking people to work and putting people to work. As van entrepreneur Lateef Ajala said in the Wall Street Journal, “Work is the medicine for poverty.”
Gearing Up for the Supremes
Litigation Director Clint Bolick, Outreach Director Maureen Blum and Communications Coordinator Melinda Ammann went to Cleveland on February 22 to begin grassroots preparation for the anticipated battle over the Cleveland school choice program in the U.S. Supreme Court. The team visited several schools and participated in a parent meeting at the Fatima Community Center hosted by Cleveland City Councilwoman Fannie Lewis. Bolick also debated Cleveland teachers’ union official Michael Charney at Case-Western Reserve Law School.