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NewsLinks is a collection of recent news items relating primarily to the California judicial branch. NewsLinks does not verify nor endorse the accuracy or fairness of the news items, and the views expressed in opinions, editorials, and commentaries are those of the writers only.

Apr 20 Painful budget choices for state judiciary
Daily Journal
(Subscription required) Difficult financial decisions confronting the state judiciary came into sharp relief Friday at the Judicial Council's meeting in San Francisco as evidenced by moves to cut a court improvement fund and significantly alter dependency court funding models.
Related: News Release
Apr 20 Panel reverses murder conviction, cites judicial misconduct
Daily Journal
(Subscription required) A state appellate court has reversed a mother's 50 year-to-life sentence for second-degree murder in the death of her newborn after finding that the trial court judge improperly withheld evidence, disparaged the defense's expert witness and bolstered the prosecution in the jury's presence.
Related: Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District
Apr 20 Judicial Profile: Tari L. Cody
Daily Journal
(Subscription required) When Judge Tari L. Cody was in private practice she would hit the road for hearings in Los Angeles an hour early to be sure she wasn't late. "I got a flat tire one time. I had to change it. I still got there on time," she said.
Related: Superior Court of Ventura County
Apr 17 Banning Justice Center will open in May
Record Gazette
It’s official, according to the Judicial Council of California: Banning can start analyzing the effect the Banning Justice Center will have on traffic and commerce as it opens for business May 4.
Related: Banning Justice Center, Press Enterprise
Apr 17 Judicial Profile: Teresa Guerrero-Daley
Daily Journal
(Subscription required) Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Teresa Guerrero-Daley oversees a court of human drama. Presiding over family violence cases, she said, is unlike any assignment she has drawn in her decade on the bench.
Related: Superior Court of Santa Clara County
Apr 16 Judicial Profile: Frederick C. Shaller
Daily Journal
(Subscription required) LA Superior Court Judge Frederick Shaller tackles his busy docket with a vigorous work ethic.
Related: Superior Court of Los Angeles County
Apr 15 El Camino Creek Elementary School visited by Chief Justice
Coast News
As a recipient of one of three Awards of Excellence, California Supreme Court Chief Justice Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye will present El Camino Creek Elementary School with the award on Thursday, April 23, 2015.
Related: Civic Learning Initiative
Apr 15 State high court to consider Prop. 47's impact on resentencing
Daily Journal
(Subscription required) Californians voted twice to dial back a throw-away-the-key approach to criminal justice, but the effort has hit a snag that only the state Supreme Court can fix.
Apr 15 Sex-offender limits no longer tied to voters' initiative
Associated Press
California parole agents will have to find a specific link to child victims if they decide to bar sex offender parolees from living near schools and parks, under a new policy issued Tuesday.
Related: Daily Journal, KCRA, Associated Press
Apr 14 Driver’s License Suspensions Create Cycle of Debt
New York Times
The last time Kenneth Seay lost his job, at an industrial bakery that offered health insurance and Christmas bonuses, it was because he had been thrown in jail for legal issues stemming from a revoked driver’s license.
Related: Sacramento Bee
Apr 14 Judicial Profile: Robert D. McGuiness
Daily Journal
(Subscription required) McGuiness, a busy jurist from a family of judges, oversees a direct calendar of civil cases, meaning he hears matters from original filing to final resolution.
Related: Superior Court of Alameda County
Apr 13 Funding civil legal aid: A bipartisan issue
TheHill
Although our economy is improving, the experiences of many truly poor people in this country remain very challenging. The legal rights of low-income Americans struggling with the many burdens of poverty must be protected, and that has been essential to the mission of the Legal Services Corporation since it was authorized in 1974 as one of the last acts of the Nixon Administration.
Apr 13 Judicial Council to Consider Sale of San Pedro Courthouse
Met News
The Judicial Council will consider the sale of the San Pedro Courthouse to Los Angeles County at its meeting this week, the council staff said Friday in a release.
Related: News Release
Apr 13 State Bar eyes developing license for legal technicians
Daily Journal
(Subscription required) Two years ago, the State Bar Board of Trustees concluded that licensing nonlawyers to help consumers with ordinary legal problems was an idea that needed further study.
Apr 13 Judicial Profile: Mel Red Recana
Daily Journal
(Subscription required) Judge Mel Red Recana uses his own slipups as a lawyer to help teach those appearing in his court.
Related: Superior Court of Los Angeles County
Apr 11 The school-to-court pipeline: Where does your state rank?
Reveal
The Center for Public Integrity ranked states by their rate of referral for every 1,000 students. Hover or tap each demographic bar to get the percent of a group’s enrollment compared to the percent of referred students who belong to that group.
Apr 10 Editorial: California's traffic fines don't fit the crime
Los Angeles Times
California has jacked up traffic ticket prices so high that many people can't afford to pay them.
Related: San Francisco Chronicle, Red Bluff Daily News
Apr 10 Arbitration case, long delayed, finally gets a state Supreme Court oral argument date
Daily Journal
(Subscription required) An important arbitration question that has languished before the state Supreme Court since 2012 at last got an oral argument date.
Related: The Recorder
Apr 10 Judicial Profile: A. James Robertson II
Daily Journal
(Subscription required) San Francisco County Judge A. James Robertson's military background carries into the courtroom.
Related: Superior Court of San Francisco County
Apr 9 California Charter Schools Association v. Los Angeles Unified School District
The Recorder
The California Supreme Court reversed a decision of the court of appeal. The court held that a school district erred in relying on district-wide “norming” ratios in calculating the number of classrooms to provide to charter schools requesting facilities.
Related: California Supreme Court, Met NewsDaily Journal, Los Angeles Times, KPCC, At the Lectern
Apr 9 Kern's court funding troubles: 'Justice delayed is justice denied'
Bakersfield Now
The Judicial Council of California reports that Kern County has the worst-funded court system in the state.
Related: InFocus: Judicial Branch Budget Crisis
Apr 9 Lawmaker Wants To End Driver’s License Suspensions For Unpaid Traffic Tickets
CBS Los Angeles
A San Fernando Valley lawmaker wants to keep millions of drivers in Southern California and across the state who have had their licenses suspended for not paying traffic tickets or missing court dates behind the wheel.
Related: L.A. Weekly; Los Angeles Times
Apr 9 Audio: California Supreme Court Hears Challenge to San Jose Affordable Housing Law
KQED
Like many California communities, San Jose requires developers to include affordable units when constructing new market-rate housing. But industry groups have sued to block San Jose's law, saying it is unconstitutional.
Related: California Supreme Court, Daily Journal
Apr 9 Judicial Profile: William Elfving
Daily Journal
(Subscription required) Santa Clara County Judge William Elfving understands when a light touch is warranted.
Related: Superior Court of Santa Clara County
Apr 8 Break for California traffic scofflaws under proposed new bill
Reuters
Californians overdue in paying parking and traffic fines would get a break on escalating fees tacked on by the courts under a proposal introduced this week in the state legislature.
Apr 8 Disparity Is Seen in California Driver’s License Suspensions
New York Times
Drivers in California who are unable to pay traffic fines for minor infractions are frequently having their licenses suspended by traffic courts — a policy that has had a disproportionate impact on poor and working-class people, according to a study released Wednesday.
Related: Los Angeles Times, CBS News, KQED, KGO, San Francisco Chronicle, Capitol Weekly, CBS San Francisco,  ThinkProgress, East Bay Express, AllGov, Christian Science Monitor, KPCC, NPR
Apr 8 Where is the Money Going? - Marin Is Only County Court System Not Projecting Double-Digit Funding Shortfall
AllGov
California court budgets were slashed around $1.1 billion during the economic downturn, forcing courthouses to close, fees to rise and services to be slashed. And the numbers indicate that people with fewer resources have been hit the hardest.
Related: Superior Court of Marin County
Apr 8 Law firms, schools, bar groups struggle to boost diversity in the legal profession
Daily Journal
(Subscription required) The first time Brandon Frank took the LSAT, it didn't go as well as he hoped. But then, he'd never taken a standardized test before.
Apr 8 Judicial Profile: Dwight W. Moore
Daily Journal
(Subscription required) San Bernardino Judge Dwight Moore is often seen as easy going, but he has an adventurous side.
Related: Superior Court of San Bernardino County
Apr 7 Alliance of California Judges conference draws criticism over funding source
Daily Journal
(Subscription required) Those attending an Alliance of California Judges conference at a swank Dana Point resort hotel this weekend will get meals, conference materials and lectures gratis, financed by George Mason University School of Law.
Apr 7 Ruling may make it easier to lose your driver's license in DUI cases
Orange County Register
In a case out of Orange County, the California Supreme Court on Monday ruled that the Department of Motor Vehicles can consider circumstantial evidence, like swerving or failing a field sobriety test, to prove a driver’s blood-alcohol content was above the legal limit.
Related: California Supreme Court, Patch
Apr 7 San Jose affordable housing law faces key legal test
San Jose Mercury News
The California Supreme Court on Wednesday will consider how far cities can go in trying to provide more affordable housing across the state as housing prices and rents continue to soar.
Apr 7 Opinion: Nonprofits will need help to absorb mandatory pro bono
Daily Journal
(Subscription required) California is considering whether to require 50 hours of mandatory pro bono service. The proposal is grounded upon the commitment to not only develop the legal skills of law students and young attorneys, but also to close the justice gap by creating an additional source of free or reduced-cost legal services for those in need.
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