Daily News Summary
An electronic digest of media coverage of interest to members of The Florida Bar compiled each workday by the Public Information and Bar Services Department. Electronic links are only active in today's edition. For information on previous articles, please contact the publishing newspaper directly.
Sept. 19, 2013
TALLAHASSEE BAR ASSOCIATION YOUNG LAWYERS AND THE TBA HOSTED SECOND ANNUAL TABLE FOR 8 -- Tallahassee Democrat, http://www.tallahassee.com, Sept. 19, 2013.
The Tallahassee Bar Association and its Young Lawyers Division hosted more than 110 judges, local lawyers, law students and Florida State University Law School Faculty on Tuesday, Sept. 5, at Capital City Country Club for the 2nd Annual Table for 8. The event offered an opportunity for judges, attorneys and law students to enjoy frank and informative conversation in a relaxed environment. Each table consisted of an even mix of judges, senior attorneys, young lawyers and law students sharing stories, concerns and lessons learned through their respective legal experiences.
JACKSONVILLE-AREA CANDIDATES RECOMMENDED TO PRESIDENT FOR FEDERAL APPOINTMENTS -- Florida Times-Union, http://www.jacksonville.com, Sept. 19, 2013. [Also: FOUR MIAMI-DADE CIRCUIT JUDGES ON SHORTLIST FOR FEDERAL BENCH -- Daily Business Review (requires subscription), http://www.dailybusinessreview.com, Sept. 19, 2013.]
The Florida Federal Judicial Nominating Commission has chosen four Miami-Dade circuit judges as finalists to fill two open positions on the Southern District of Florida bench. It also selected four finalists for a U.S. district judge position and three finalists for U.S. attorney in the state’s Middle District. Of the four finalists for the district judge position, two are from the Jacksonville area. The finalists will be interviewed by U.S. Sens. Bill Nelson and Marco Rubio, who make recommendations to President Barack Obama.
FRED GRIMM: RUBIO STANDS IN WAY OF JUSTICE -- Miami Herald, Column, http://www.miamiherald.com, Sept. 19, 2013.
Herald columnist Fred Grimm writes about Sen. Marco Rubio's blocking of Senate consideration of Miami-Dade Circuit Judge William Thomas and Nassau Circuit Judge Brian Davis for the federal bench. President Obama had nominated Judge Thomas 10 months ago for the Southern District court in Miami, while Davis’ nomination has been languishing for 16 months. Both candidates are black. Grimm notes that Davis and Thomas are just two of 43 federal judicial nominees stalled in the Senate, concluding that "Rubio is not just fomenting political and racial divisiveness, he’s clogging the courts. He’s impeding justice."
JUDGE SHEA REPRIMANDED BY FLORIDA SUPREME COURT FOR SCREAMING, INSULTING LAWYERS -- Orlando Sentinel, http://www.orlandosentinel.com, Sept. 19, 2013.
Orange-Osceola Circuit Judge Tim Shea was reprimanded today [Sept. 18] in Tallahassee by the Florida Supreme Court for screaming at people in his courtroom, repeatedly insulting lawyers and losing his temper while on the bench. Shea, 58, had earlier admitted that he was guilty of being a bully and committing acts unbecoming by a judge. Chief Justice Ricky Polston cited the reasons for which he was being reprimanded, calling them examples of "egregious conduct," adding that Shea had been "intemperate and disrespectful." In court paperwork, Shea had earlier apologized, saying those events happened during an extended family crisis and that he'd gotten professional counseling. Shea currently handles criminal cases in the main Orange County Courthouse.
--Civil Justice Issues--
FLORIDA SUPREME COURT TO HEAR ARGUMENTS IN FPL RATE INCREASE THURSDAY -- Palm Beach Post, http://www.pbpost.com, Sept. 19, 2013. [Also: EDITORIAL: FLORIDA SUPREME COURT SHOULD REJECT SETTLEMENT IN FPL RATE CASE -- Palm Beach Post, Editorial, http://www.pbpost.com, Sept. 19, 2013.
The Florida Supreme Court is scheduled to hear arguments at 9 a.m. Thursday [Sept. 19] in an appeal of Florida Power Light Co.’s rate increases, the first of which took effect in January. The Office of Public Counsel, representing the interests of Florida citizens in utility issues, contends the rate hikes are not in the public’s interest and the order is unlawful. Last year the Florida Public Service Commission issued an order allowing Juno Beach-based FPL a $350 million base rate increase. A Post editorial asserts that "not only should the court rule against the commission, the court must rule against the commission."
LAWYERS LINE UP TO REPRESENT JACKSONVILLE GENERAL COUNSEL IN LAWSUIT -- Florida Times-Union, http://www.jacksonville.com, Sept. 19, 2013.
Five attorneys, including three past presidents of The Florida Bar -- John A. DeVault III, Hank Coxe and Rutledge R. Liles -- have signed up to represent Jacksonville General Counsel Cindy Laquidara in a court fight over whether her selection followed rules spelled out in the city charter. The suit filed last week against Laquidara argued that her appointment and confirmation as general counsel did not follow a chain of steps the charter requires, partly because Mayor Alvin Brown reappointed her before he was sworn into office. The suit, filed by the Concerned Taxpayers of Duval County and Jacksonville resident Joseph Strasser, also argues Laquidara had not been screened by a committee of attorneys who the charter says is supposed to recommend potential nominees to the mayor.