Monday, March 28, 2011
This Week at the City Bar
Around the Bar
Justice Center Update
Recent Committee Activity
Nominations Reminder
City Bar in the News
This Week at the City Bar
5 PM, Event

Botein Awards

9 AM 12 PM, CLE
The Art and Science of Persuasive Communication

6 PM – 8 PM, Event
The Residential Foreclosure Crisis: Where Do We Go From Here?

6:30 PM, Event
Thinking Small: Exploring a Career in a Small Firm a Program for Law Students

12:30 PM, Event
Lunch with a Judge: Hon. Joan Madden

12:30 PM 1:30 PM, Event
Career Search Group

6 PM 8 PM, CLE
Is Bankruptcy the Right Prescription for Distressed Health Care Providers?

8:30 AM – 10:15 AM, Event
Connecting with Clients in a Loosely-Connected World

6 PM 9 PM, CLE
Termination of an Employee: Avoiding Litigation

6:30 PM, Event
Lawyer to Entrepreneur in 2011


9 AM 12 PM, CLE
Public & Private Small Companies: Corporate & Securities Law Issues for Internet, Fashion, Healthcare, Social Networking & Media, Internet, Finance & More

6 PM, Event

Friday Evening Chamber Music

Around the Bar
Panel Discusses the Roberts Court and the First Amendment

On March 24th at the City Bar, a panel discussed recent and upcoming First Amendment cases before the U.S. Supreme Court. From left: Paul Smith, Jenner & Block LLP; Burt Neuborne, Inez Milholland Professor of Civil Liberties and founding Legal Director, Brennan Center for Justice, NYU School of Law; Devereux Chatillon, SNR Denton US LLP; Adam Liptak, Supreme Court Reporter, The New York Times; and Stephen McAllister, Solicitor General of Kansas and Professor of Law, University of Kansas School of Law.

Justice Center Update
City Bar Justice Center to Expand Services in 2011
The Justice Center has plans to expand services in two areas in 2011. The first involves the Immigrant Women and Children Project, which has become a leading project in fighting labor and sex trafficking under its Director, Suzanne Tomatore, a nationally known expert in the trafficking field. The second area is an expansion of the Justice Center’s pro bono work with detained immigrants. Read full update here.

Recent Committee Activity
Criminal Convictions a Basis for Lay-Offs

In a letter to the Legislature, the Committee on Corrections argues that the provision of Senate budget bill S.2808-B (Part EE) that would allow a teacher’s criminal conviction to be used as a dispositive ground for lay-off priority without affording any individualized assessment or due process rights undercuts the public-policy aims of New York Correction Law Article 23–A, which is to protect individuals with prior criminal convictions from such blanket discrimination. The letter urges that the proposed legislation be amended to strike the provision making an employee’s criminal conviction a sole basis for terminating employment or, alternatively, to provide a meaningful process under which proper consideration may be given in order to retain effective and excellent professionals in the classroom.

Sales Tax on Animals Harvested at Game Hunting Facilities
The Committee on Legal Issues Pertaining to Animals expressed opposition to S.835/A.2112, which would amend the New York Tax Law to exempt animals killed at game hunting facilities from sales and compensating use tax, by including these animals in the category of food or food products sold for human consumption. While food is exempt from retail sales and compensating use taxes, the bill creates a new tax exemption. The Committee opposes this because (a) animals shot at game hunting facilities are not necessarily used for food; (b) killing animals at game hunting facilities is in conflict with the state’s anti-cruelty law; and (c) this is an inappropriate exemption, particularly given New York’s fiscal situation.

Use of Funds for the Transfer of Non-Citizen Detainees
A letter to Congress from City Bar President Sam Seymour, authored by the Task Force on National Security and the Rule of Law, expressed concern with Sections 1112 and 1113 of the 2011 Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act (H.R. 1). Section 1112 would prohibit the use of appropriated funds for the transfer of a non-citizen held at Guantanamo Bay to the United States for any purpose, thereby preventing Guantanamo detainees from being tried in Article III courts. Section 1113 would greatly restrict the transfer of detainees to foreign countries. These provisions, the letter argues, do not comport with the separation of powers upon which the Constitution is based, and would reflect an unwarranted and unwise intrusion by Congress into areas of decision making that are properly left to the Executive Branch.

Nominations Reminder
The City Bar is still accepting nominations for the 22nd Annual Legal Services Awards. The award is designed to recognize the efforts of lawyers and non-lawyers who have, for an extended period during their career, devoted themselves to the provision of free civil legal services on a full-time basis to indigent persons.

The deadline for nominations is Monday, April 4, 2011. Click here for more information.

City Bar in the News
New York Law Journal, March 21, 2011
City Bar Urges Increased Public Access to Disciplinary Matters
The New York City Bar is calling for increased public access to attorney disciplinary proceedings. The move is one of the many reforms the bar group is advocating in its legislative agenda for 2011, which was released last week….Attorney disciplinary files are now kept confidential unless a recommendation for a public sanction is upheld by the Appellate Division. According to the city bar, increasing transparency earlier in the process will bolster public confidence and make the process “more efficient and effective, as a result of the increased scrutiny.” The city bar also favors imposing a seven-year statue of limitations for initiating disciplinary proceedings. There is no statute of limitations now.

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