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November 2007

CBA LITIGATION COUNCIL
NOVEMBER 3, 2007 MEETING MINUTES


LOCATION:  CBA offices, Denver, CO

COUNCIL MEMBERS PRESENT:

In Person:     

Vice Chair:  Alden Hill
Secretary:  Lorraine Parker
Brad Breslau
Sandra Wick
John Purvis
Mike Chapman
Larry Schoenwald
Mickey Smith
Jon Sands
           
Via Phone: Peter Goldstein; Brock Woods, CLE
               
CBA Personnel: Greg Martin; Michael Valdez   
               
OTHERS PRESENT: John A. Eckstein, CBA Professionalism Committee - Vignettes
           
1.    CALL TO ORDER:  9:05 AM

2.    APPROVAL OF MINUTES:  The October 6, 2007 Meeting Minutes were approved by unanimous vote after motion.

3.    REPORT FROM JOHN A. ECKSTEIN, CBA PROFESSIONALISM COMMITTEE – VIGNETTES: Mark Fogg was instrumental in getting the project done.  Some of the vignettes were requested by judges, others by John Gleason.  Some vignettes portray malpractice, others ethical issues.  The videos depict “lawyers behaving badly” and are designed to stimulate discussion, but may be viewed for CLE credit.  John showed the Council the Teaching vignettes.  Production of the videos cost $14,000, of which the Litigation Council contributed $5,000.  If any Council member would like a copy, send an email to Greg Martin.  Only concern is technical issues regarding ease of use of the disk given some problems displaying the vignettes.

4.    FINANCIAL REPORT.   The attached financial reports were distributed.  The Council ended the year with $47,000 in the bank; there is approximately $74,000.00 on hand.  Greg distributed a budget for the coming year which includes a $10,000 grant for mock trial, and $5,000 for a project yet to be identified.  On motion, the $10,000 grant for mock trial approved by unanimous vote. 

5.    COMMITTEE AND SUB-COMMITTEE REPORTS:

A.    Supreme Court Rules Committee. Peter Goldstein reported that the remainder of meetings for the year have been canceled.

B.    Board of Governors. Jon Sands reported that the next BOG meeting is Saturday, November 10th.  The Agenda was distributed.
   
C.    CBA Task Force on Judicial Performance.  Michael Valdez reported on a meeting of the task force in mid-October; the next meeting is scheduled for November 13th.  So far it appears that the CBA’s proposals are being well-received.  The current statute does not provide for public input into rule changes.

D.    Professional Committee.  See Vignettes, above.

E.    Securities Sub-Section. No report.

F.    Appellate Practice Committee.  Still looking for someone in the sub-section; Michael Valdez will circulate their membership.

G.    Section Newsletter.  Kim Schutt is working on a newsletter; hopes to have it out in a couple of weeks.

H.    CLE update.   Brock Woods reported that he has been putting on non-litigation programs; but is recruiting litigation Boot Camp CLE speakers.  Difficulty with two segments:  developing a theory and theme of the case and becoming a good storyteller, and a walk-through of the whole trial process from a substantive standpoint.  Council members encouraged to email Brock with any suggestions for speakers.

6.    LEGISLATIVE UPDATE.   Michael Valdez reported on John Andrews’ new initiative on judicial term limits “12 years and you are out.”  Andrews recognized effectiveness of the anti-Amendment 40 campaign and is no longer making it retroactive.  Now will apply to all judges from county court level all the way to the supreme court.  Wednesday November 7th is the deadline for approval of the title, but the title is clean, therefore Andrews will be able to start gathering signatures.  Andrews’ cost of gathering signatures will be approximately $300,000, as cost goes up in presidential election years.  Council discussed issues surrounding Andrews’ latest initiative.  The Joint Budget Committee is getting requests to increase funding for legal services, particularly in the domestic arena.

7.    OLD BUSINESS:

A.    Follow up re Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System. The Institute is doing a lot of work nationally to help other states that elect judges move to merit selection.

B.    Preemptory Challenges Practices.   Peter Goldstein has no report as there has been no Rules Committee meeting since the last Council meeting, and that there will be no meeting until January 2008.  Peter requested to put the issue on the agenda for the January meeting.  Peter and Jon will circulate suggested revisions to Rule 47(g) for discussion at the December 1st meeting.

C.    Speakers for Future Meetings.  John Gleason will speak in December and Jerry Maroney in January.  Judge Nottingham in March 2008.  Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals Joanne Davidson suggested for February or April 2008. 

D.    Past or ongoing projects the Council needs to address.  None.

E.    E-filing issues:  pro se litigants do not pay; Mr. Gall will be advised this is an issue to address with the Supreme Court.  E-filing is a contract between State Judicial and Lexis-Nexis; discussion regarding the Council’s role in assuring that associated costs are reasonable.  Issue will be addressed with Jerry Maroney; we will ask him to bring the associated material or person most able to answer questions. 

F.    Dead Man Statute.  Probate section wants a response from the Litigation Council.  The Probate Sections proposal will be re-circulated for the next meeting not only to the Litigation Council but also to CDLA and CTLA for comment.

8.    NEW BUSINESS.

A.      New members for council.  Greg Martin provided the Council with information concerning two potential members.  Michael will send the Council a list of appellate sub-committee members.

B.    Sandra Wick raised the issue that the CBA’s website does not have any current information for the Litigation Section.  Greg explained options are for a techie member of the Council to update the website.  There is not enough CBA staff time to update 36 sections.  Another option would be to hire an IT person to update the Litigation Section’s web page.  Greg believes the Council could probably pay a temp $100 to update the web page to at minimum include the newsletter.  The council requested Greg to look into finding a temp to do this.

C.    Need for new secretary.  Lorraine Parker requested a replacement as secretary during cancer treatment.  Larry Schoenwald volunteered on an interim basis.  (Thank you, Larry).

9.     ADJOURNED at 11:25 a.m.  Next Meeting to be December 1, 2007 at CBA offices, at 9:00 AM. 

Prepared by:

 
/s/ Lorraine Parker                   
Lorraine Parker, Secretary

Approved:   _________________________
            (date)