Supreme Court Query on Florida Ban on Cuba Travel

May 17, 2011

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday asked the Obama administration to weigh in with a brief on a request that the court overturn a Florida law barring travel by state university system professors to Cuba. The law was adopted by Florida lawmakers intent on distancing the state from Cuba, and an appeals court upheld the law as a justified education policy. But faculty members and civil liberties groups are challenging the law, arguing that it improperly has a state setting foreign policy. In other actions related to higher education, the court let stand an appeals court ruling dismissing a False Claims Act lawsuit brought by former faculty members against Chapman University, in California. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit had dismissed the lawsuit after a 2009 Supreme Court decision that resolved a technical issue involving how False Claims Act cases could be appealed. The case, which involved how part-time students were educated, was seen as having potentially significant implications for higher education accreditation.

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