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Bills would make changes to pro bono funding, court costs, early voting

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Indiana’s 2012 legislative session promises to be a busy one, with hundreds of bills already filed and a short session deadline of March 14. Following are some of the bills Indiana Lawyer is watching:

The Senate Committee on Judiciary is expected to hear a bill that would create additional funding for pro bono districts. Senate Bill 235, introduced by Sen. Ron Grooms, R-Jeffersonville, would distribute $1 from certain small claims and civil court filing fees to the Indiana Bar Foundation for the purpose of supplementing funding to Indiana’s pro bono districts. Charles Dunlap, executive director of the bar foundation, said the bill could result in about $500,000 in annual funding for the pro bono districts, which have struggled with budget shortfalls resulting from a decrease in interest on lawyer trust accounts.

House Bill 1049, authored by Rep. Eric Koch, R-Bedford, would remove a $400 cap on fees for participation in problem-solving courts. Under the revisions made by the bill, reasonable fees for education or treatment and rehabilitative services would not be included in the participation fee. The bill is slated to be heard by the House Committee on Judiciary.

Democratic Sens. Jean Breaux of Indianapolis, Jim Arnold of LaPorte, and John Broden of South Bend have introduced a bill that would allow county election boards to establish early satellite voting centers with only a majority vote. Currently, a unanimous vote is required to establish early satellite voting centers. The legislation – Senate Bill 6 – has been referred to the Senate Committee on Elections. If passed, the law would be effective before November’s presidential election.

 

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  1. IF the Right to Vote is indeed a Right, then it is a RIGHT. That is the same for ALL eligible and properly registered voters. And this is, being able to cast one's vote - until the minute before the polls close in one's assigned precinct. NOT days before by absentee ballot, and NOT 9 miles from one's house (where it might be a burden to get to in time). I personally wait until the last minute to get in line. Because you never know what happens. THAT is my right, and that is Mr. Valenti's. If it is truly so horrible to let him on school grounds (exactly how many children are harmed by those required to register, on school grounds, on election day - seriously!), then move the polling place to a different location. For ALL voters in that precinct. Problem solved.

  2. "associates are becoming more mercenary. The path to partnership has become longer and more difficult so they are chasing short-term gains like high compensation." GOOD FOR THEM! HELL THERE OUGHT TO BE A UNION!

  3. Let's be honest. A glut of lawyers out there, because law schools have overproduced them. Law schools dont care, and big law loves it. So the firms can afford to underpay them. Typical capitalist situation. Wages have grown slowly for entry level lawyers the past 25 years it seems. Just like the rest of our economy. Might as well become a welder. Oh and the big money is mostly reserved for those who can log huge hours and will cut corners to get things handled. More capitalist joy. So the answer coming from the experts is to "capitalize" more competition from nonlawyers, and robots. ie "expert systems." One even hears talk of "offshoring" some legal work. thus undercutting the workers even more. And they wonder why people have been pulling for Bernie and Trump. Hello fools, it's not just the "working class" it's the overly educated suffering too.

  4. And with a whimpering hissy fit the charade came to an end ... http://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2016/07/27/all-charges-dropped-against-all-remaining-officers-in-freddie-gray-case/ WHISTLEBLOWERS are needed more than ever in a time such as this ... when politics trump justice and emotions trump reason. Blue Lives Matter.

  5. "pedigree"? I never knew that in order to become a successful or, for that matter, a talented attorney, one needs to have come from good stock. What should raise eyebrows even more than the starting associates' pay at this firm (and ones like it) is the belief systems they subscribe to re who is and isn't "fit" to practice law with them. Incredible the arrogance that exists throughout the practice of law in this country, especially at firms like this one.

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