State and local governments in the United States possess broad authority to regulate social and economic life. Throughout American history, in fact, most public law has been generated by state and local governments, forming the basis of what scholars have called "the well-regulated society." In this course we will examine the theoretical, historical, and doctrinal aspects of state and local government law. In particular, we will examine the sources and structures of governmental authority (e.g., state plenary power, home rule, Dillon's rule, sovereign immunity), and the tools state and local governments use to achieve their objectives (the police power, taxation and finance, eminent domain, etc.).