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TFB - Daily News Summary - Oct. 17, 2017

Tuesday, October 17, 2017  

THE FLORIDA BAR

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 and distributed to the Board of Governors, section and committee chairs, voluntary bar presidents, members of the judiciary and others.

 

October 17, 2017

 

Constitution Revision Commission

FLORIDA BAR LAUNCHES PUBLIC EDUCATION PROGRAM FOR FLORIDIANS ON CONSTITUTION REVISION

The Florida Bar | Blog Post | October 17, 2017

The Florida Bar today [Oct. 17] launched Protect Florida Democracy: Our Constitution, Our Rights, Our Courts, a statewide public education program to fill the void in Floridians’ awareness of constitution revision and engage Floridians in this critical process. Kicking off the educational effort at Florida’s Historic Capitol were two historical figures — Alexander Hamilton and Frederick Douglass — to lend their perspectives, in character, about the importance of both the federal and state constitutions. Visit protectfldemocracy.org to learn more, download posters, get the CRC timeline and much more.

 

Judiciary

KRISTINA SAMUELS APPOINTED AS CLERK OF COURT FOR THE FIRST DISTRICT COURT OF APPEAL

First District Court of Appeal | News Release | October 16, 2017

First District Court of Appeal Chief Judge Brad Thomas announced the appointment of Kristina Samuels as the fourth clerk of court for the First District Court of Appeal: “I am confident that Kristina Samuels brings the expertise, knowledge and ability to serve as an outstanding clerk of court and to build upon the successful innovations implemented by the Court to enhance the administration of justice and serve the citizens of the State of Florida.”

 

Legal Profession

WITH A FLURRY OF FIRSTS, FENTRICE DRISKELL LOOKS TO OPEN DOORS FOR OTHERS

Tampa Bay Times | Article | October 15, 2017

Profile of Fentrice Driskell, a partner at Carlton Fields and one of the panelists for the upcoming Wonder Women Unite business seminar. Graduating from Harvard in 2001 was yet another notch on Driskell’s belt of achievement, which includes being the first black woman student government president at Harvard, and one of the first black women to make partner at Carlton Fields, where she practices commercial litigation, consumer finance defense, and bankruptcy litigation. Driskell — a former president of Tampa’s George Edgecomb Bar Association — said she relishes walking into unchartered territory and conquering the unknown – especially if it inspires and makes a way for other women.

 

Judiciary

CHALLENGES FACED AND LESSONS LEARNED AS PUBLIC DEFENDER

Jacksonville Daily Record | Article | October 16, 2017

When Charlie Cofer took office Jan. 3 as public defender for the Fourth Judicial Circuit, he knew going in he was facing challenges. Before he was sworn in, he became aware that the public defender’s office was in the precarious financial position of being likely to run out of money before June 30, the end of the fiscal year. Cofer went to work with assistance from the state Justice Administration Commission. His new policy was to “look at every expense and cut out anything that didn’t aid the mission of the office,” and “we got squared away and came in under the budget,” he added. A former assistant public defender and then a Duval County judge, his outlook on the system and how it works has changed after nine months in office.

 

Legal Profession

MEET THE TAMPA ATTORNEY WHO TOOK CHARGE AT AUGUSTA MONDAY

Tampa Bay Times | Article | October 16, 2017

Fred Ridley, a Tampa lawyer, on Monday [Oct. 16] became the new chairman of the Augusta National Golf Club, and with it the Masters. He is the first Augusta Chairman to have played in the Masters, which he did three times in the 1970s. He won the 1975 U.S. Amateur championship, and he is the last U.S. Amateur winner not to turn professional, choosing a law career instead. He attended Stetson University College of Law and is a partner at the international law firm Foley & Lardner LLP.

 

Civil Justice Issues

DISH NETWORK TAKES FLORIDA TAX FIGHT TO U.S. SUPREME COURT

Orlando Sentinel | Article | October 16, 2017

Satellite-television company Dish Network is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to take up a constitutional challenge to a Florida law that sets different tax rates for cable and satellite TV services. The company filed a petition nearly five months after the Florida Supreme Court sided with the state and the cable industry in upholding the law. The long-running battle focuses on the state’s communications-services tax, which is 4.92 percent on the sale of cable services and 9.07 percent on the sale of satellite-TV services. Dish Network contends the different tax rates are a form of protectionism that violates the “dormant” Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution.

 

Civil Justice Issues

SUPREME COURT SETS ARGUMENTS IN RED-LIGHT CAMERA BATTLE

Northwest Florida Daily News | Article | October 16, 2017

The Florida Supreme Court will hear arguments in February in a battle about a red-light camera program in the city of Aventura that could have broader implications across the state. The case focuses on whether Aventura gave too much authority to a private company that contracted to help run the red-light camera program. The Third District Court of Appeal upheld the Aventura program in a decision involving a motorist who received a ticket for improperly turning right at a red light. While the appeals court sided with Aventura, it also urged the Florida Supreme Court to take up the case.

 

Civil Justice Issues

3 APPEALS FOR HURRICANE AID PENDING IN FLORIDA SINCE 2004

Daily Business Review | Article | October 16, 2017

As Florida communities recover from the impact of Hurricane Irma, an analysis by The Associated Press shows the Federal Emergency Management Agency may take years to pay bills related to cleanup and repairs after a hurricane — if it pays at all. Dozens of requests for reimbursement from FEMA are still pending, including at least three cases in Florida still open for over a decade.


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