Thursday, January 11, 2007

Seven items that have been sitting here waiting to be blogged

Not that I have time to adequately myself on these items, but here they are, some of them have been noticed by others, whom I would cite if I had the gumption.

This article from StyleWeekly fleshes out the details of how terrible it is that court-appointed lawyers in Virginia are paid so little. If I was in the legislature, I would complain about this issue every day until it gets resolved, there is no more important business for the General Assembly to consider than whether it will afford poor Virginians their right to counsel by paying lawyers adequately to do the work - particularly when this year like every other, the General Assembly members are cooking up dozens of new criminal offenses to inject into the Code.

This article talks about the irony of the efforts by the Hazel family to keep a power line off their property. There is irony, there, but I don't know too much about it, the Hazels are like fictional characters I've only read about in the Washington Post and Virginia Business.

This commentary on zoning law in Virginia, which points out there is case law already in Virginia where the Virginia Supreme Court upheld a denial of rezoning in Chesterfield because of the lack of adequate facilities for the proposed new use. It also points out some remarkable figures on proffers, that is cash to accompany rezonings: "for fiscal 2006, Fairfax County (pop. 1,006,529) collected $8.2 million in cash proffers. Chesterfield County (pop. 288,876) collected $6.8 million. The City of Manassas Park (pop. 11,622) collected $2 million. Loudoun County (pop. 255,518) collected $13.3 million. Prince William County (pop. 348,588) collected $25.2 million."

This update
from Martinsville says that Hunton & Williams charged the city over $750,000 to lose the cable TV case. The County Attorney, a good man if ever there was one, is quoted as saying "'It pains me a great deal ... (that) all of this money has been flushed away by the city' with no return on the investment." No doubt.

This article (registration required) from the Winchester paper says that a high school student is seeking a preliminary injunction against the Frederick County schools in connection with his right to wear a t-shirt with some kind of Christian message, and his right to distribute pro-life literature. Do the high schools ever win those t-shirt cases? The article says the plaintiff Andrew Raker has been consulting with some group called the Alliance Defense Fund.

The Hook has this article with more coverage on who will succeed Judge Peatross in Albemarle County. Only in Charlottesville does a judgeship get so much press. The inference that the Hook and others are trying to make is that the politicians are going to pick a Republican party regular, such as the current Commonwealth's attorney, over better-qualified candidates who got better ratings from the local bar association - at least, that's the story they are looking for, whether it ever turns out that way remains to be seen. There are some non-Republicans getting circuit court appointments these days, not too many, but more than zero. (I can name one.)

Finally, from Yahoo, here is a story about an award of punitive damages against State Farm in a case related to damage from Hurricane Katrina. One interesting thing is that the case got to trial so soon, in some places it would take longer.

No comments: