Next week, the U.S. Supreme Court opens its October Term. Most Americans these days will not mark this first Monday in October with any fanfare, but in 18th-century Virginia, the celebration of “Court Day” established the legal and social rules for the entire community.
The Kansas House has narrowly approved a change in how some state programs are funded. Certain programs receive money from docket fees paid in the court system, but a bill in the House would instead put that docket fee money in the state general fund.
The money from docket fees goes to 14 programs, including the state Trauma Fund and the Access to Justice Fund. Supporters of the change say the docket money should instead be put into the state general fund, where lawmakers could then appropriate it to the programs.
A proposal to give Kansas governors and lawmakers more power over appointments to the state's appellate courts cleared a legislative committee Wednesday.
The measure would amend the Kansas Constitution to allow governors to appoint whomever they choose to the state Court of Appeals and Supreme Court, subject to Senate confirmation. It would scrap the statewide, attorney-led commission that now screens applications.
Currently, the commission nominates three finalists for the governor, who then makes the appointment without legislative review.
The Justice Department’s bankruptcy watchdog agency opposes a move by Hawker Beechcraft to pay eight senior executives more than $5.3 million in bonuses.
In a court filing yesterday, U.S. Trustee Tracy Hope Davis argued that Hawker Beechcraft hasn’t shown that its proposed bonus plan isn’t a disguised retention plan. Bonus plans are allowed, but must do more than simply reward managers for staying during a bankruptcy reorganization. Hawker Beechcraft calls it an incentive award and says its plans are consistent with its commitment to strongly emerge from bankruptcy.