Judges may not sit on panels with fiscal oversight of government funds

first_img November 1, 2001 Regular News A judge may not serve as an appointed member of a municipal commission that is charged with fiscal oversight of government funds, according to the Judicial Ethics Advisory Committee. The inquiring judge has been asked by the mayor where he serves to be a member of the city’s children’s commission. Its responsibilities are to “make final decisions on the commission’s funding strategy and grant making.” Opinion Number: 2001-16. In addition, the commission’s “two-prong approach” is to “prevent problems before they occur and ensure accountability for the public dollars granted to programs.” “In recent opinions, this committee has answered numerous inquiries from judges who are concerned about their inability to participate in events or organizations with admittedly admirable goals,” the panel said. “The concern continues to be the isolation that judges suffer because of the Code of Judicial Conduct; they feel adherence to the code separates them from the mainstream of their communities.” The committee said it has rendered several opinions regarding the participation of judges on civic boards and commissions and in each case the answer has been structured and affected by the responsibilities of the board or commission in question. Canon 5C(3) permits a judge to serve as a director of a charitable or civic organization not conducted for profit subject to certain limitations and other requirements of the Code. The code even permits the judge to participate in the management and investment of the organization’s funds. “The committee has previously opined that it is permissible for a judge to serve on the board of a supervised visitation program under the theory that such a program is “tangentially related to the courts,” the panel said. “However it should be noted that the funds were raised on behalf of a private not-for-profit corporation.” This matter, the panel said, is better governed by Canon 5C(2) which states: “A judge shall not accept appointment to a governmental committee or commission or other governmental position that is concerned with issues of fact or policy on matters other than the improvement of the law, the legal system or the administration of justice.” “The Committee is not unmindful that participation by judges on many committees and commissions may be justified as being tangentially related to the justice system or the improvement of the law,” the ethics panel said. “It is this ‘justification’ through the exceptions stated in Canon 5C(2), which has in some instances blurred the distinction between the branches of government.” This blurring, which Canon 5C(2) was adopted to prevent, affects the public’s perception of the independence of the courts from the executive and legislative branches of government, the panel said, adding the commentary to Canon 5C(2) states that the purpose of the prohibition is “to protect the courts from involvement in extra-judicial matters that may prove to be controversial. Judges should not accept governmental appointments that are likely to interfere with the effectiveness and independence of the judiciary.” In this inquiry, the committee said, the judge described the commission in question as one which involves itself in the granting of government funds and overseeing their use. “This is a clear responsibility of the executive branch, no different than the operations of the police and fire departments,” the panel said. “Although a creative justification as tangentially relating to the justice system may be made, the committee believes that the judge’s participation would be a clear violation of Canon 5C(2) and advises the inquiring judge to decline the appointment being offered.” The Judicial Ethics Advisory Committee is expressly charged with rendering advisory opinions interpreting the application of the Code of Judicial Conduct to specific circumstances confronting or affecting a judge or judicial candidate. Its opinions are advisory, and conduct that is consistent with an opinion may be evidence of good faith on the part of the judge, but the Judicial Qualifications Commission is not bound by the committee’s interpretive opinions. The full text of the opinions is available on the Supreme Court’s website at www.flcourts.org. Once there, click on the “Judges’ Page” link. Judges may not sit on panels with fiscal oversight of government fundscenter_img Judges may not sit on panels with fiscal oversight of government fundslast_img read more

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COVID case identified at St. John the Evangelist Elementary

first_imgThe district says they will also notify the St. John Evangelist community with any interruptions to the schools calendar schedule. The districts says they have quarantined one class and several teachers impacted. BINGHAMTON (WBNG) — The Catholic Schools of Broome county says they were notified of a confirmed COVID case at St. John the Evangelist Elementary School. The Catholic Schools of Broome County will be working with health officials to monitor the virus and determine if additional actions should be taken. center_img The district says parents, faculty and staff will be notified immediately with any further decided upon actions. The district says they are working with the health department on proper procedures for all faculty, staff, and students regarding the next steps in quarantining and testing for the virus. last_img read more

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UK roundup: NAPF, LGPS, LPFA, Apollo Global Management

first_imgThe National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) has called on the new UK government to focus on tackling the deficits within the Local Government Pensions Scheme (LGPS) over continuing its policy of cost cutting.Speaking at the NAPF Local Authority Conference in southwest England, chief executive Joanne Segars said the LGPS community needed to ensure that focus remained on sustainability of the 101 schemes across the UK.The 89 in England & Wales face potential changes to investment management, as the previous Conservative-led coalition government recommended forcing all listed assets to be invested passively in a collective investment vehicle.A survey of LGPS NAPF members found that more than one-third (35%) said the new Conservative majority government should focus on tackling deficits – none supported mandatory passive investing. Segars said the £47bn (€65bn) deficit in the schemes, which have around £200bn in assets, would be the defining issue over the short term.“We need to cut a good and sensible path through the noise,” she said.“And it is why we need a clear and consistent way to measure deficits – and why we need to be innovative in developing solutions for managing them.”In other news, the London Pension Fund Authority (LPFA) has selected Apollo Global Management to invest £150m in alternative credit, including distressed debt, real estate debt, leveraged loans and private lending.In March, the £4.8bn LGPS scheme created a framework for alternative credit managers for all LGPS schemes to use, appointing Apollo alongside Ares Management, Babson Capital and GSO Capital.It has now selected Apollo from the framework to manage its push into alternative credit markets after running a second tender process among the four managers.last_img read more

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Earl “Seco” Grant denies involvement in alledged fire-bombing incident

first_img Share Sharing is caring! 22 Views   no discussions Share Tweetcenter_img Share LocalNews Earl “Seco” Grant denies involvement in alledged fire-bombing incident by: – July 4, 2011 Photo credit: dreamstime.comEarl Grant a Dominican businessman who is presently residing in the United States has categorically denied any involvement in the alleged fire-bombing incident of Mr. Glenworth Emmanuel’s residence on December 25th, 2010.Mr. Grant who was at the time speaking with Senior Counsel Anthony Astaphan during  his “The Next Level” radio program on the weekend has explained that because of the nature of his business and the fact that he is presently serving as a juror in the United States he is off island.In recent times an article has been published in a prominent newspaper with a confession from Denny Shillingford claiming responsibility for the alleged fire-bombing incident, in which he claims that Mr. Grant was his accomplice and driver in the allaged incident.“I have been hearing all those allegations going around about me and Denny, and I know Denny a guy from my village a notorious guy you know always in trouble with the law, have a criminal record and I am hearing a whole set of things going on…..I have never contacted Denny Shillingford or have anything with Denny Shillingford. I’ve never get any contact with Denny Shillingford, I’ve never drove Denny Shillingford anywhere or even pay Denny Shillinford money to do anything for me. What would I benefit to doing anything to Mr. Gon Emmanuel’s house?”Mr. Grant also stated that though he has been traveling extensively this year, it is as a result of his business transactions and has nothing to do with evading the police authorities. He also informed that since these rumors have surfaced, he has contacted the Investigating Officer to inform him of his whereabouts.“I called the Investigating Officer I told him of my situation and my location and I told him once I am done with my business and everything I will be glad to hop a flight to come down to Dominica. I have no problem with that. “I am there because my passport is about to expire and I put it in for renewal so I am just waiting on my passport and other little business that I am trying to finalize and when that is done I will be back in Dominica. So when they are saying about I run what is the reason for me running?”Mr. Grant concluded that “there is no way I would be involved in that, I have no involvement in that.”Dominica Vibes Newslast_img read more

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Moving to Texas can be difficult, so let the carwash drown your tears

first_imgI may be the only person in the world who nearly drowned in a carwash. This happened a few days after we had moved from Southern California to Houston. It soon became apparent that Texans did things a lot differently than we were accustomed to – their automatic carwashes were no exception. I was already adjusting to chicken fried steak and fried catfish, to men who wore heavy neck chains with gold nuggets, pickup trucks with shotguns, and semis driving 90 mph in the fast lane. Now I was dealing with the aftereffects of five days and nights of a downpour, which had opened up potholes in the roads and fired up drivers’ tempers. Gutters had overflowed, turning the streets into gushing rivers, and men in business suits were wearing cowboy boots to avoid the discomfort of sitting at their desks all day with wet socks and pant legs. When the rain finally stopped, my new little Toyota was a dull, muddy brown instead of shiny green. It clearly needed a bath. So I drove around looking for a carwash. Bad timing. It was rush hour and cars were stuck together in all directions. Finally, though, I found what I was looking for. But it was behind a gas station where cars were lined up to the street waiting to fill up their tanks. The drivers kindly let me wiggle through to get to the back of the station, where I found the carwash building with a sign explaining the proper procedure. “Drive your own car slowly through the soap and rinse cycle. Exit and pay attendant at front of station.” OK, I can do that. Point the tires straight, drive slowly into the carwash, pray that my tires stay inside the 3-inch railing on both sides of the car. Now I’m in an igloo composed of soapsuds and giant scrubbing brushes. So far so good. I was even humming a catchy little tune, something about “getting tears in my eyes from lying on my back crying over you” that I’d heard on my car radio. I was looking forward to the rinse cycle. Soap, more soap, brushes whirling wildly away. Minutes passed. Now I began to worry. Shouldn’t I be in the rinse cycle by now? Pushing on the gas pedal did nothing. Could I have turned the car slightly and driven up onto that railing? I couldn’t get out of the car for help because I would have had all the skin scraped off my body from the giant brushes. The headlights! I could flash them on and off and someone would come to help me – well, that didn’t work. Everyone was around front pumping gas. I began to breathe heavily. How long would the oxygen inside the car hold out? Chappaquiddick flashed through my mind. OK, try the horn! Really blow it! A lot! Aha! The brushes stopped, and as the soapsuds were making their final descent down my windshield, I could see parts of a very angry bearded man in a cowboy hat, standing at the end of the building pulling down a lever which stopped the machinery. He shook his fist at me. “Dammit!” he said. “You stalled your engine, you dumb broad! Ain’t you got the sense to start it up again?” Oh, I see. I wasn’t hung up on the railing, after all, soapy tires spinning aimlessly. I turned the key in the ignition, stepped on the gas pedal, and my staunch little car moved bravely ahead past the angry man who grabbed my money without another word. I made it through the heavy traffic to the safety of my own cozy garage. I hurried into my house and poured myself a glass of wine and drank it in one gulp. Then I poured another and phoned my daughter in California, who had been concerned that this move might be difficult for me. “Hi, honey,” I said. “I’m doing just fine. I’m relaxing with a nice glass of wine after a busy day. I just learned how to use their carwash system here, and tomorrow night we’re going to Gilley’s and dance the Cotton-Eyed Joe. It’s about stepping into cow patties and shaking them off your shoes. Can you imagine this is part of a dance? It’s really fun out here in Houston!” Jean Stephenson is a longtime Palos Verdes Estates resident and an artist. Do you have a story to tell? Submit your column to Lisa Martini, My Turn, Daily Breeze, 5215 Torrance Blvd., Torrance, CA 90503-4077, or e-mail us at [email protected] Please limit to 800 words and include your telephone number. We’ll pay $25 for each column we publish.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

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