Constitutional Law Keyed to Cohenback
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For many years, civil service rules have provided that any member of the city’s police department must serve a one-year probationary period before he or she will be considered a permanent employee. However, because the rules were enacted before the city’s police academy was established, a prospective police officer now spends six months in the academy before being hired by the city. A graduate of the police academy was with the city police department for eight months after graduation when she was terminated. There were no city ordinances or state laws that required that she be given either a reason for the termination or a hearing, and she was given neither. The graduate brought suit against the city in state court because of the termination of her employment, alleging a violation of her due process rights.
Which of the following would most likely give her a constitutional basis to require the city to give her a statement of reasons for the termination and an opportunity for a hearing?CorrectIncorrect
A state statute provided for the suspension or revocation of a retail business license where there have been “repeated violations” of specified regulatory statutes by any one individual or business. A store owner had already been fined three times under the statute. Several days later, the store owner received a notice from the regulatory agency that was created by the statute stating that his business license will be suspended for 21 days for violation of the statute.
If the store owner files suit to set aside the suspension, the owner will most likely:CorrectIncorrect
A citizen, outraged at the mayor’s support of the sale of pretzels on city streets, demonstrated in front of City Hall. The citizen chanted, “Mayor, you liar, I’ll set your rear on fire.” While being handcuffed and arrested by police, the citizen shouted several offensive obscenities. A state statute provided, “One may not utter obscene or highly offensive language in public.”
If prosecuted for violating this statute, which of the following choices should the citizen advance?CorrectIncorrect
A public-school teacher was hired without a written contract. The school district handbook provides that all newly hired employees are at-will employees for their first year of service and may be dismissed for any reason or without reason. Six months after being hired, the teacher was dismissed without any prior notice or a hearing.
Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the teacher’s argument that she should have been afforded notice and a hearing before dismissal?CorrectIncorrect
An accountant employed by the Federal Communications Commission was offended by various jokes and cartoons that employees would post in the office cafeteria. The Commission did not have any rules regarding what employees could post in the cafeteria, and none of the cartoons were pornographic or harassing. Nevertheless, the accountant lodged a number of complaints with his supervisor that went unheeded. Finally, the accountant posted his own notice chastising the hypocrisy and immorality of the agency for allowing such cartoons when it was charged with ensuring a standard of decency on the public airwaves. The notice prompted a great deal of debate among employees and a great deal of displeasure on the part of the accountant’s supervisor, particularly after it was posted on another employee’s blog and received some media attention. A labor contract between the agency and the clerical workers’ union contained a policy for providing for termination of union employees only for certain specified grounds, but the accountant was not a member of the union and was not covered by the policy or any other employment agreement.
Which of the following statements is most accurate regarding the agency’s right to dismiss the accountant?CorrectIncorrect