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.
January 16, 2013
--The Florida Bar--
PELL AWARDED FOR PRO BONO WORK -- Panama City News Herald, http://www.newsherald.com, Jan. 16, 2013.
Assistant State Attorney Bob Pell has been recognized by Legal Services of North Florida for his pro bono work. Pell will also be receiving The Florida Bar President’s Pro Bono Service Award during a ceremony at the Florida Supreme Court at the end of the month. Pell has coordinated a monthly clinic for people in the 14th Judicial Circuit who need legal representation, and volunteered with the local bar and Teen Court.
JUSTICE PERRY URGES STUDENTS TO PERSEVERE -- Tallahassee Democrat, http://www.tallahassee.com, Jan. 16, 2013.
On the day Martin Luther King Jr. would have turned 84, Florida Supreme Court Justice James E.C. Perry told hundreds of Florida A&M students to seize opportunities without worrying where their efforts might lead. “The master plan will come into place,” Perry told the crowd gathered Tuesday at Gaither Gym for FAMU’s annual Martin Luther King Jr. Convocation. “Don’t worry about seeing your way clear — just start. A path will always open up for you.” Gov. Charlie Crist appointed Perry to the Florida Supreme Court in 2009, making him the fourth black justice to serve on the state’s highest court.
FLA. SUPREME COURT: 5TH CIRCUIT NEEDS MORE JUDGES -- Ocala Star Banner, http://www.ocala.com, Jan. 16, 2013.
The 5th Judicial Circuit needs more county and circuit judges, according to the Florida Supreme Court. The court said 63 judges are needed statewide, including three circuit judges in the 5th Circuit and one county judge in Marion. “We haven't had any new judges in five years,” said Circuit Judge David Eddy, the chief administrative judge in Marion. Eddy said if an additional circuit judge were added to the current Marion roster, that judge would most likely be assigned to a civil docket, since the number of foreclosure filings is on the rise again.
ETHICS BILL TAKES SHAPE IN FLORIDA SENATE -- St. Augustine Record, http://www.www.staugustine.com, Jan. 16, 2013.
Each year, as many as 800 elected officials ignore a law that requires they submit a form detailing their financial interests, according to the state Ethics Commission, but there's not much the panel can do about it. An automatic fine of as much as $1,500 is issued, but the commission has written off $1 million in fines over the past decade because, it says, they're essentially uncollectable. That would change under a wide-ranging bill the Senate Ethics and Elections Committee began crafting Tuesday [Jan. 15] as a top priority for Senate President Don Gaetz. The measure also would seek to keep politicians from routinely having meals and drinks paid for through political committees and would add tighter restrictions on government jobs that politicians can take while in office and lobbying jobs they can take once they leave.
INVENTOR WINS LEGAL BATTLE OVER FLOATING HOME -- Bradenton Herald, http://www.bradenton.com, Jan. 16, 2013.
Fane Lozman, a Marine turned multi-millionaire inventor who has become a thorn in the side of Riviera Beach officials, has won his long-running legal battle against the city over his floating home. In a 7-2 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday [Jan. 15] declared that Lozman's 60-foot, two-story home that was once anchored at the Riviera Beach Marina was not a vessel. As Lozman has argued for years, the court ruled that the city shouldn't have been able to seize it using centuries-old maritime law. Maritime lawyers, who have been watching the case closely, said the ramifications are potentially far-reaching.