Thursday, July 14, 2016

Spirit of the law

So Mitch's legislative end-run around the WTC lawsuit appears to have worked after all.
Charlene Gipson, an attorney with the Davillier Law Group representing Two Canal Street Investors, said via email that Chase dismissed their lawsuit without granting her clients the benefit of a hearing where they could present their case. They intend to "appeal to the highest level."

Earlier this year the city attempted to get the Louisiana Legislature to approve a law that would have required anyone challenging a lease awarded through a public benefit corporation, such as the New Orleans Building Corp., to post a security bond for millions of dollars in order for the court case to move forward. In the end, the bill from state Sen. Conrad Appel was scaled back to simply speed up the process for such legal challenges. Signed by Gov. John Bel Edwards, it requires such cases to be heard within 60 days of a lawsuit being filed, and a ruling must come within 20 days after the conclusion of arguments.

"The defendants' failed attempt to change the law to require a multimillion dollar bond for plaintiffs to access the courts has apparently been converted to an unprecedented interpretation of a longstanding statute regarding security for court filing fees," Gipson said.

Chase judgment based on Two Canal Street Investors failing to post a $750,000 bond was made in error, Gipson said, because state law links such security to expenses associated with court services that unfold during the course of trial, "and not an illusory, inflated bond ... that bears no rational connection to the actual court fees contemplated by the cited statute..."
Ok well we'll see if they're really going to appeal to the "highest levels." But when the judge decides to enforce the intent of a law that didn't actually get passed, that does seem like grounds for a complaint. 

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