Monday, September 8, 2003
Conference of Delegates, Meeting for First Time as Independent Body, Rejects Move to Criticize Bush
By DAVID WATSON, Staff Writer
ANAHEIM—The Conference of Delegates of California Bar Associations kicked off its Anaheim meeting Friday by rejecting a bid to call for an investigation into President George Bush’s prosecution of the Iraq war.
Conference officials ruled the resolution, filed as an emergency late-filed measure, did not meet technical requirements to be considered. A motion to overrule the determination got 101 votes in favor, with 100 against, but needed a two-thirds majority to pass.
Instead the conference—this year for the first time independent of the State Bar of California, renamed, and freed from the State Bar strictures limiting the kinds of issues it can consider—spent most of its first afternoon plowing through a series of resolutions calling for changes in laws governing civil procedure.
A resolution proposed by the Bar Association of Northern San Diego County to amend Code of Civil Procedure Sec. 2019 to facilitate the electronic exchange of discovery requests passed on a 113-90 vote, despite concerns expressed by some delegates it might handicap lawyers without computers.
A voice vote was enough to pass a resolution sponsored by the Los Angeles County Bar Association calling for the Legislature to authorize reasonable attorney’s fees to a judgment creditor who defeats a third party claim in connection with levying on a judgment on a debtor’s assets, and another LACBA measure—the group has nine proposals scheduled to be considered over the three days of the conference—was adopted without floor debate.
It called for amending Code of Civil Procedure Sec. 1985.6 to expand the definition of parties maintaining employment records to include labor unions, and the other. The section requires notice to employees when their records are sought.
A measure calling for making the fee awards provisions of the anti-SLAPP statute discretionary instead of mandatory failed on a voice vote. Proponents said the mandatory fee provisions have made judges reluctant to grant anti-SLAPP motions, but opponents said the mandatory fees often provide the only incentive for lawyers to represent clients sued by large corporations for exercising their free speech rights through postings on the Internet critical of the corporations.
Copyright 2003, Metropolitan News Company