Z

Zambrano
The short name for a 1993 class-action case called Zambrano v. INS. Plaintiffs were undocumented people who had applied or tried to apply for amnesty (legalization) under the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) but were denied or turned away as inadmissible based on the likelihood that they would become public charges (receive government need-based benefits). The plaintiffs challenged the government regulations all the way to the Supreme Court. After a number of twists and turns, the whole tangle was ultimately straightened out in the immigrants' favor through passage of the LIFE Act.

Zealous Witness
A witness who gives testimony clearly biased toward the party that called him or her to testify.

Zero Tape
A tape that is printed out when a voting machine is first set up at a polling place. It is called a zero tape because it should register zero votes for each candidate or question.

Zoning
The local laws dividing cities or counties into different zones according to allowed uses, from single-family residential to commercial to industrial. Mixed-use zones are also used. Zoning ordinances control the size, location, and use of buildings within these different areas and have a profound effect on traffic, health, and livability.