Announcements, information and updates from CWAG Members and Associates
2017 CWAG Annual Meeting Registration Now Open !
San Francisco, CA
July 30- August 2, 2017
The Conference of Western Attorneys General along with CWAG Chair and Hawaii Attorney General Doug Chin invite you to the 2017 CWAG Annual Meeting in San Francisco, CA, July 30-August 2, 2017. Join your colleagues as CWAG explores the most pertinent legal issues during the days and spend the evenings enjoying the urban charm of the city at our social events.

To register online use the following link: 2017 CWAG Annual Meeting Registration
If you have attended an annual meeting in the past few years your contact information has been saved in the registration system. Please review your contact information during the registration process to make sure it is current.
To register go to "Sign In" and enter the email address and password you or your assistant previously provided. If you can't recall your password, click on the "Forgot Password" link and your password will be sent to the email that is saved in the system.
If you have not previously registered for the annual meeting go to "New Registration", enter your email and create a personal password to be used for future registrations.
Early Bird Registration:
Early bird registration ended on June 2nd. All registrations received after this date will be charged the regular registration fee.
Onsite Registration:
Pre-registering for primary attendees and guests who would like to attend any of the substantive or social opportunities is required. CWAG must make commitments to the hotel and activity vendors based on pre-registered guests prior to our arrival. The registration fees cover the cost of activities and meals at the conference which have been pre-arranged. Given the necessity of pre planning, we will not be accepting any onsite registrations. 
Hotel room cutoff: 
If the room block sells out prior to that time, reservations will be accepted on a space available basis. The reservation number for the Westin St. Francis is 1.888.627.8546. Ask for the CWAG room block to receive our discounted rates.
CWAG Attorney General Jahna Lindemuth of Alaska announced that she filed a request to intervene in support of Department of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke in a federal lawsuit brought by the Center for Biological Diversity. The lawsuit challenges the validity of the Congressional Review Act, under which Congress and the President recently revoked regulations adopted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that would have restricted hunting methods and means on refuges throughout Alaska. The plaintiff claims the Congressional Review Act is unconstitutional and wants to reinstate the hunting restrictions. The State supports use of the Congressional Review Act, and had urged the Alaska delegation to take action under the law to revoke the regulations. This law allows Congress with approval from the President to repeal regulations adopted within 60 legislative days (which could be as long as 6 months) of the previous administration, and this is the first time it has been used to address a regulation intended to impact a single state. "We are pleased that our congressional delegation made it a priority to reverse these unnecessary hunting restrictions affecting 80 million acres in Alaska," said Attorney General Lindemuth. "The rules adopted by the last administration clearly infringed on Alaska's sovereign right to manage the harvest of fish and game in Alaska."
CWAG Attorney General Cynthia Coffman of Colorado announced the Colorado Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) has selected the PoliceOne Academy learning management system and training platform to deliver courses to all law enforcement in Colorado. POST is housed in the Colorado Attorney General's Office. Effective July 1, 2017, this unprecedented collaboration will enable Colorado POST to provide vital training resources to all law enforcement agencies and 13,500 peace officers throughout the state via its online learning platform. "By forming this partnership with PoliceOne, Colorado will continue to be a leader in the training of critical skills required for law enforcement professionals," said Attorney General Coffman.  PoliceOne Academy is already the preferred training provider for 157 Colorado law enforcement agencies, who together employ a total of 7,800 officers in the state. Colorado POST spent considerable time evaluating top training and learning management solutions, ultimately selecting PoliceOne Academy based on its proven reputation and usage in Colorado and the ability to produce timely law enforcement training courses.  The PoliceOne Academy offers the unique ability for agencies to run their own programs in a customizable environment, selecting relevant training topics from the Academy library to offer alongside state-funded training resources 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year
CWAG Associate Attorney General Brad Schimel of Wisconsin has made supporting victims of sexual assault one of his top priorities. In addition to solving the statewide issue of untested sexual assault kits, Attorney General Schimel's work on behalf of sexual assault survivors continues with a Wisconsin Department of Justice training, hosted by the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point (UWSP) for local and campus partners, to tackle the tough issues surrounding the investigation of campus sexual assault. "On college campuses, student safety is a shared responsibility between the campus and surrounding community," said Attorney General Schimel. "When a victim of sexual assault comes forward, the campus and the community officials must be able to work together to support the survivor and provide the justice survivors deserve. I'm excited to provide DOJ's expertise in trauma-informed response to sexual assault so that survivors of sexual assault will know that the necessary support will be there to them.  I also am very grateful to UWSP for hosting this important event and want to particularly thank UW System President Ray Cross and UW-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank for their generosity in providing individuals to speak on this topic." 
CWAG Associate Attorney General Bill Schuette of Michigan announced that his new Opioid Trafficking and Interdiction Unit is now fully operational and is prosecuting or has convicted more than a dozen individuals for cases involving large amounts or delivery of heroin or other opioid-based drug crimes from across Michigan. "We can't arrest our way out of this problem, but we can reduce the amount of heroin and other opioids available in Michigan and the Opioid Trafficking and Interdiction Unit will do just that," said Attorney General Schuette. "Those caught in this addiction cycle are the victims of this disease caused by opioids, a powerful pull to not necessarily feel good, but to not feel bad. My goal with the Opioid Trafficking and Interdiction Unit is to cut off the supply of heroin and pills, and give law enforcement the chance to prosecute the players who continue to provide toxic drugs to Michigan residents every day."
The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals rejected the States of Nebraska and Oklahoma motion to intervene in a case challenging Colorado's marijuana laws but allowed private litigant to proceed. The Tenth Circuit stated: "Those States claim that Amendment 64 injures their sovereign interests and those of their citizens, and that its enforcement is preempted by the CSA. We granted their motion in No. 16-1048 and heard their arguments, which confirmed that their controversy is with Colorado. Given that fact, we must confront 28 U.S.C. ยง 1251(a), which forbids us from exercising jurisdiction over controversies between the States. We therefore cannot permit Nebraska and Oklahoma to intervene, or even confirm that they have a justiciable controversy that may be sufficient for intervention. Consequently, we vacate the order granting intervention in Safe Streets Alliance and deny the States' motions in both cases." A copy of the opinion is attached HERE.
CWAG Attorney General Mark Brnovich of Arizona filed a brief in federal appeals court to protect Arizona consumers from abuse in the class action settlement process. In the Amicus Brief, Attorney General Brnovich asked the appeals court to reverse a lower court approval of a proposed class action settlement that would send $8.5 million to class action attorneys but only $225,000 in cash to consumer class members. "Consumers must be our top priority in the class action settlement process," said Attorney General Brnovich. "Class action lawsuits serve an important role in protecting victims. The interests of others should never be placed ahead of consumers." The class action lawsuit alleged that when consumers clicked on ads offering a future discount during the check-out process for certain flower and gift websites that they were then improperly enrolled in a fee-based subscription service without the Defendants fully disclosing that consumers' credit cards would be charged. Under the settlement, Defendants are paying out over $13 million in cash. Approximately $8.5 million of this goes to class action attorneys and another $3 million goes to San Diego area universities. But consumers only receive $225,000 in cash along with highly restrictive $20 "e-credit" settlement coupons to the flower and gift websites that are almost useless because they expire in one year, are subject to extensive blackout dates (including around Mother's Day, Valentine's Day, and Christmas), and require class members to spend their own money to take advantage of the face value of the coupon.
CWAG Attorney General Hector Balderas of New Mexico announced that he filed a lawsuit against national discount retail chain Dollar General for false advertising, unfair trade practices, and environmental public nuisance for the sale of obsolete motor oil in New Mexico stores from 2010 until February of this year. Dollar General has eight-seven (87) stores located across New Mexico, including in rural and suburban communities, many of which are lower income. "My office continues to aggressively protect hard working New Mexico families and vulnerable consumers by holding big corporations like Dollar General accountable for preying on them and lying about the quality of the products that they sell," said Attorney General Balderas. "Putting New Mexicans' valuable property and safety at risk is unacceptable, and companies that harm our communities and profit by taking money out of the pockets of our families will face consequences for their bad acts." 
CWAG Associate Attorney General Tom Miller of Iowa announced that a judge has ordered the Colorado makers of "drinkable sunscreen" and other so-called "harmonized water" products to stop selling them to Iowans while a consumer fraud lawsuit is pending. In a preliminary injunction Judge Scott D. Rosenberg ordered Osmosis LLC, Harmonized Water LLC, and Benjamin Taylor Johnson, to refrain from selling the company's harmonized water products to Iowans until Miller's lawsuit, filed March 14, is resolved. The preliminary injunction followed an evidentiary hearing earlier this month at which Johnson testified. The order finds the harmonized water products in question "may jeopardize the health of Iowans by giving a false sense of security, curability and immunity by use of Defendants' various products." The ruling cites several products and product claims, including Osmosis's claims that ingesting its harmonized water products prevents sunburn, mosquito bites, and acne; treats psoriasis, eczema and joint pain; assists with infertility and thyroid deficiencies; and cancels the negative effects of pathogens.
CWAG Associate Attorney General T.J. Donovan of Vermont joined with Vermont power companies, businesses, and residents to launch a new campaign to protect Vermonters from being scammed by people pretending to be a utility. These scammers call residents and businesses demanding immediate payment for electricity with a credit card, pre-paid card or money order. Utilities report these scams are increasing and scammers are becoming more sophisticated and tech savvy in their scams. To raise awareness and protect Vermonters, the Attorney General's office started the "Scam Buster" campaign, reminding people to stop, ask, and confirm before they make any payment to avoid being scammed. "Protecting Vermonters is the number one focus of our office," said Attorney General Donovan. "Our team is working with local businesses and utilities to raise awareness. If any Vermonter is not sure about who is on the other end of the phone, they should not make a payment and call the AG office or their local utility."
CWAG Associate Attorney General Ken Paxton of Texas filed a motion that asks the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to declare that the federal government is not in compliance with the Nuclear Waste Policy Act (NWPA). Texas also asked for an injunction to stop the Department of Energy (DOE) from illegally spending money on matters not approved by Congress. Since the NWPA was enacted in 1982, DOE has failed to proceed with the licensing process for a permanent nuclear waste storage repository. In March, Attorney General Paxton filed a lawsuit with the 5th Circuit to force an up or down decision by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission on the licensing of Yucca Mountain and stop DOE from unlawfully spending tax dollars on ways to undermine Congress's choice of Yucca Mountain. "The goal of this latest filing is to have the federal government follow the law and focus its efforts on the permanent nuclear waste facility selected by Congress," Attorney General Paxton said. "Every day the federal government refuses to fulfill its mandate under federal law is another day that more nuclear waste piles up above ground, threatening our health and safety, and placing Texas at greater risk for a nuclear incident."
Chris Coppin | Legal Director
Conference of Western Attorneys General