San Francisco’s public contracting requirements could drive both taxpayers and vendors batty: “[C]ity purchasing policies, if followed, would mean paying about $240 for getting a copy of a key that actually cost a worker $1.35 to get done at a hardware store on his break,” according to one whistleblowing employee. [SF Chronicle via Matt Welch]
- He wuz framed? Lawyers say wearing glasses will help a criminal defendant win acquittal [NYDN, ABA Journal]
- “Are Judges ‘Employees’ Covered by State Antidiscrimination Law?” [Volokh, Fox]
- Pursuing food safety, Congress ensures only unintended consequences [Paul Schwennesen, The Freeman]
- High cost of litigation for Louisiana cities and towns [LLAW, PDF, via NJLRA; Daily Comet]
- Calif. Kwikset decision not entirely a debacle for defendants [Russell Jackson, earlier] More: Cal. Civil Justice.
- Pennsylvania lawmakers consider reform of joint and several liability [Post-Gazette]
- Lawsuit fears tame a Frederick, Md. ice playground [Free-Range Kids]
- Following scrutiny by Albuquerque newspaper, lawyer drops life insurance class action settlement [ten years ago on Overlawyered]
“The city of Lodi ended a long legal battle over groundwater contamination earlier this month,” accepting $6.3 million from insurers for local businesses. [Lodi News-Sentinel] We covered the convoluted litigation, in which the California city sued numerous local businesses, in reports here and here.
- Many of the best New Jersey sledding slopes are off limits now: “Litigators ruin pretty much everything” [Bainbridge]
- Granola bar trans-fat lawsuit leaves Russell Jackson unimpressed;
- “Criminal barbering”: license lapse gets 82-year-old Oregon hair-cutter in legal trouble [Perry]
- Tomorrow’s economy won’t thrive if municipal authorities strangle innovative businesses where they incubate [Conor Friedersdorf, City Journal]
- Need to bring property taxes under control? Try litigation reform [NJLRA]
- Convicted at height of 90s child-abuse prosecution fever, Ohio pair seek to reopen case [Briefcase] More: Balko.
- Here’s an idea: “Let the shareholders decide if SOX is worth the costs.” [Ribstein]
- Retired Massachusetts attorney found in possession of stolen art trove [five years ago on Overlawyered] Updates courtesy reader Ronald Stimbert: Legal Blog Watch 2008 (attorney convicted); Cape Cod Times 2010 (paintings returned to owner).
Vowing no longer to be Mister Nice City (assuming it ever qualified as such), Chicago is now willing to pay $50,000 to fight (successfully) a police-misconduct case it could have settled for $10,000:
Even though the city stands to lose money litigating every case under $100,000, a spokeswoman for the law department said that recently compiled figures showed the strategy seemed to be saving taxpayer money by dissuading lawyers from suing the police unless they are confident of victory.
(& welcome Coyote readers).
That includes $14 million in payouts to defense lawyers, many of whom have close ties to local politicians, and $25 million to claimants, a figure that “dwarfs what area municipalities and larger cities including Camden and Trenton have paid, and nearly equals payouts in Newark, where the population is eight times larger than Atlantic City.” The casino town’s population is 35,000. [Press of Atlantic City]
Among its other proposals, it’s calling for medical malpractice reform to “pay lawyers less and reduce defensive medicine.” [Reuters]
The backstop was located only 15 feet behind home plate and should have been 25 feet instead, according to the plaintiff’s lawyer suing the Connecticut town. [Greenwich Time]