May It Please The Court: Weblog of legal news and observations, including a quote of the day and daily updates

Skip To Content

MIPTC Author:


The Sled:

Listed in Latino Who's Who, June 2014
Locations of visitors to this page

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

Quote of the Day - Double, double toil and trouble; Fire Burn and Cauldron Bubble. - William Shakespeare
Adjust font size: A A+ A++
Claim Your Profile on Avvo
There are 2034 Journal Items on 255 page(s) and you are on page number 218

Firefighting Air Fleet Down, Perfect Storm Brewing

Last year, air tankers provided support to fight wildfires here in Southern California. Estimates are that over 700,000 acres burned.

That translates into about seven percent of the standing dead trees in Southern California, according to fire department sources.

That leaves 93% available for fires to burn.

Not to add fuel to the fire, but the government has grounded its tanker fleet based on safety concerns. Apparently, for good reason. The fleet is old and apparently not safe.

Have a look at the remaining dead trees (scroll down to look at bottom picture).

Is there a perfect storm brewing again this year?

Printer friendly page Permalink Email to a friend Posted by J. Craig Williams on Tuesday, May 11, 2004 at 10:13. Comments Closed (0) |

Can You Pay Back These Fines?

There you are, out wandering (let's say patrolling) the Arizona forest during high fire season. You're a U.S. Forest Service Forestry Technician. You get a letter from your estranged husband earlier that morning. You're upset. Very upset. What do you do with the letter?

Of course. You burn it. In a campfire ring. In the middle of one of the hottest summers on record. During the highest possible fire danger. The fire gets away from you, and you report it. Not surprisingly, they ask you how it started.

You lie about it.

Next thing you know, you owe $42.2 million in fire suppression costs, $14.7 million of which was upheld by the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals. Plus 12 years in state prison, and 6 years in federal prison. At least you get to serve the sentences concurrently.

Plus, they took your matches away. Go figure.

Printer friendly page Permalink Email to a friend Posted by J. Craig Williams on Monday, May 10, 2004 at 10:55. Comments Closed (0) |

Wine or Whine? Tell Us Soon, Supremes

I follow the wine industry for two reasons: one because my son works in it - but is now on his way to the University of Iowa College of Law (my alma mater) and will likely return to it. The other because I like wine. Jack London merlot to be specific. Plus an occasional Chianti Classico Riserva.

But I digress.

One of the more frustrating things is trying to buy wine and have it shipped to you interstate. It's nothing short of a nightmare.

This coming Thursday, the United States Supreme Court will consider whether to unravel the mess. Stay tuned, and look for more on these two cases: Granholm v. Heald and a companion case, Michigan Beer & Wine Wholesalers Association v. Heald.

Then we'll decide whether to order that perfect case of wine, or whether to order some cheese with that whine.

Printer friendly page Permalink Email to a friend Posted by J. Craig Williams on Sunday, May 09, 2004 at 13:45. Comments Closed (0) |

Go To Prison, Get A Flat-Screen TV

Most people assume that when you go to prison, you deserve some level of punishment.

Not true in Oregon.

There, you get to watch flat-screen TVs in your cell. If you're good, and you've earned it, according to prison officials there. They claim relegating prisoners to their cells instead of the common TV room cuts down on violence.

But, the prisoners who get the flat-screen TVs are basically trustys. Did I miss something?

Most people, including me, do not yet have a flat-screen TV at home.

Maybe I need to go to prison to watch one. Nah.

Printer friendly page Permalink Email to a friend Posted by J. Craig Williams on Saturday, May 08, 2004 at 11:46. Comments Closed (0) |

Lodi Loses In More Ways Than One

The City of Lodi doesn't like hazardous waste, so they passed an ordinance, MERLO, (see second story down) to regulate it. It passed muster (partially) before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

Given that their ordinance had for the most part gotten past the possible conflict with the federal hazardous waste laws, the City was emboldened. They went after more companies using their ordinance. One company, Randtron, however, fought back and claimed that it was preempted by the HSAA, the California State Superfund laws. The City, confident with its somewhat federal victory, fought back.

They lost.

Turns out that the state appeals court thinks that the State Superfund law controls over the City's ordinance. Who woulda thunk it? No kidding.

But, it didn't have to be such a loss. All the City had to do to exercise proper jurisdiction over Randtron was to designate the area as redevelopment and then use the Polanco Redevelopment Act. Too bad they didn't think of that first. Would have saved them a ton in attorneys fees.

Oh well, it's only the taxpayer's money.

Sunday, May 9, 2004. Here's a follow-up in the Contra Costa Times about the lawyers fees charged in these cases.

Printer friendly page Permalink Email to a friend Posted by J. Craig Williams on Friday, May 07, 2004 at 14:39. Comments Closed (0) |

One Cruise Line Comes into Line

As part of my continuing effort to follow up on previously published posts, here's one on cruise ships and sewage. It appears that Royal Caribbean is cleaning up its act.

According this Associated Press story, the cruise line "will clean the up to 24,000 gallons of sewage or 'blackwater' and 265,000 gallons of 'graywater' from laundries, showers, sinks and dishwashers each dumps daily when it's at sea."

Predictably, Oceana (the environmental group that led this charge) is gloating. Royal Caribbean cleaned up its act after paying a $27 million file to the Coast Guard. Now, 29 ships are outfitted with the treatment systems, and 26 more are slated for retrofitting.

Printer friendly page Permalink Email to a friend Posted by J. Craig Williams on Thursday, May 06, 2004 at 12:30. Comments Closed (0) |

Creating The Laboratory Error Defense

The Third Circuit created new law yesterday: the laboratory error defense. This defense applies in at least the Clean Water Act, and perhaps other environmental statutes.

The company, Allegheny Ludlum, charged with violating the CWA believed it was in compliance with reporting requirements, but due to a laboratory error, they actually were overreporting zinc concentrations due to the laboratory's contaminated reagent. The USEPA brought an administrative action to levy fines. After imposing some $8 million in fines, the company fought the allegations in a lower court and lost. They appealed, and won, creating this new defense.

The USEPA argued that the CWA imposed a strict liability scheme, and there could therefore be no exceptions. Although the Circuit court disagreed with the government, the court would not endorse the laboratory error defense as an actual affirmative defense to the USEPA's charges, but noted that it was "relevant" to compliance determinations.

Printer friendly page Permalink Email to a friend Posted by J. Craig Williams on Tuesday, May 04, 2004 at 11:16. Comments Closed (0) |

Your Landfill is About to Start Glowing

According to the North County (San Diego) Times, both environmentalists and government employees are upset at the USEPA.

Not that it's any surprise that they're upset.

The USEPA is proposing to dump radioactive waste into landfills. Now that's something that may be worth being upset about. I don't like to glow in the dark. Here are the comments submitted by The Public Citizen. I know it's redundant, but I didn't pick the name.

This editorialist complains that he can't dump a TV into a landfill, but the USEPA wants to dump radioactive waste.

If you want to comment or give the USEPA a piece of your mind, then go to it.

Printer friendly page Permalink Email to a friend Posted by J. Craig Williams on Monday, May 03, 2004 at 11:33. Comments Closed (0) |

Page:  << Prev  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15  16  17  18  19  20  21  22  23  24  25  26  27  28  29  30  31  32  33  34  35  36  37  38  39  40  41  42  43  44  45  46  47  48  49  50  51  52  53  54  55  56  57  58  59  60  61  62  63  64  65  66  67  68  69  70  71  72  73  74  75  76  77  78  79  80  81  82  83  84  85  86  87  88  89  90  91  92  93  94  95  96  97  98  99  100  101  102  103  104  105  106  107  108  109  110  111  112  113  114  115  116  117  118  119  120  121  122  123  124  125  126  127  128  129  130  131  132  133  134  135  136  137  138  139  140  141  142  143  144  145  146  147  148  149  150  151  152  153  154  155  156  157  158  159  160  161  162  163  164  165  166  167  168  169  170  171  172  173  174  175  176  177  178  179  180  181  182  183  184  185  186  187  188  189  190  191  192  193  194  195  196  197  198  199  200  201  202  203  204  205  206  207  208  209  210  211  212  213  214  215  216  217  218 219  220  221  222  223  224  225  226  227  228  229  230  231  232  233  234  235  236  237  238  239  240  241  242  243  244  245  246  247  248  249  250  251  252  253  254  255  Next >>

Back to top.