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Florida tops tort reform group's list of ‘Judicial Hellholes,' while California No. 2

From
legalnewsline.com

California, City of St. Louis Circuit Court, New York City’s asbestos court and Philadelphia round out the American Tort Reform Association’s top five this year.

Justices: Wells appearing as independent on ballot would be 'fraud'

CHARLESTON – The state Supreme Court declared Erik Wells a registered Democrat and said any attempt to “otherwise identify himself” or “disaffiliate” with the state Democratic party can only be accomplished by changing his registration.

Segal firm names almost 300 companies in each asbestos suit

CHARLESTON – The average number of companies targeted by some of the biggest asbestos firms in their lawsuits is in the triple-figures, according to recent statistics, forcing some, especially those in claims management, to question the strategy of plaintiffs’ lawyers.

States file opening briefs against EPA’s Clean Power Plan

Earlier this month, the U.S. Supreme Court stayed enforcement of the agency’s new rule until arguments in the case conclude. Arguments on the plan’s legality are scheduled for June before the federal appeals court.

Morrisey: States have no legal obligation to comply with halted Clean Power Plan

The attorney general, joined by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, sent a letter Friday to two groups representing state environmental and utility regulators across the nation, pointing to the U.S. Supreme Court’s stay of the EPA’s new rule earlier this week.

U.S. SC sides with states, halts EPA’s Clean Power Plan

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton hailed the high court’s decision to stay the agency’s new rule, calling it a “major victory” for Americans. The White House disagreed with the court’s order, but said it is confident the agency will prevail in the court challenge.

W.Va, other states file reply in Clean Power Plan stay request

The states contend that if left unstayed, the EPA’s new rule will force “massive and irreversible changes” in terms of state policies and resources, power plant shutdowns, and investments in wind and solar power.

AGs want U.S. SC to stay EPA’s Clean Power Plan

CHARLESTON – West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, along with officials from 30 other states and state agencies, are now asking the U.S. Supreme Court to put the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan on hold.

Court denies states' request for stay of Clean Power Plan

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, who is leading a coalition of states against the federal agency’s new rule, says he is considering an appeal with the U.S. Supreme Court.

U.S. Senate fails to override Obama veto of resolution nullifying EPA ‘Waters’ rule

Sens. Shelley Moore Capito and Joe Manchin both voted Thursday to override Obama’s veto. The Senate fell 15 votes short.

House passes resolution nullifying EPA 'Waters of the U.S.' rule

WASHINGTON – The U.S. House of Representatives, including West Virginia’s entire congressional delegation, on Jan. 13 approved a measure that would effectively kill the Environmental Protection Agency’s new “Waters of the United States” rule. The House voted 253-166, passing a resolution of disapproval to nullify the rule, which extends the federal agency’s authority to all bodies of water, no matter the size or frequency. Only one Republican – U.S. Rep. Chris Smith of New Jersey – voted against

More than 100 opt out of water crisis settlement

CHARLESTON – More than 100 people have asked to be excluded from a class action settlement over the 2014 water contamination crisis in West Virginia. Those wishing to opt out or object to the settlement – in which Freedom Industries executives have agreed to pay $400,000 – have until next month to do so.

Goodwin steps down as U.S. Attorney

U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin announced Monday he is returning to private practice after serving as a federal prosecutor for 15 years.

House votes to stop new EPA power plant rules

WASHINGTON – The U.S. House of Representatives, including West Virginia’s delegation, voted Tuesday to void Environmental Protection Agency regulations for new and existing power plants. The House voted 242-180 to repeal the EPA’s Clean Power Plan, which puts carbon emissions limits on existing plants, and 235-188 to block the federal agency’s rules governing emissions from new plants.

Manchin breaks ranks, votes to stop EPA coal regulations

WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin broke rank with fellow Democrats and voted Tuesday to pass a resolution to stop the Obama administration from imposing anti-coal regulations on new coal-fired power plants West Virginia’s senior senator also voted to pass a separate resolution, introduced by U.S. Sens. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., and Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., to prevent the administration from moving forward with its proposed anti-coal regulations for existing coal-fired plants.

Capito, Manchin vote to block ‘overreaching’ EPA ‘Waters’ rule

WASHINGTON – West Virginia’s Shelley Moore Capito and Joe Manchin were among those U.S. senators who, on Tuesday, voted in favor of a measure that would effectively kill the Environmental Protection Agency’s new “Waters of the United States” rule.

Tomblin: State has questions, but will submit to EPA Clean Power Plan

CHARLESTON – West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin says the state will submit a plan in an effort to comply with the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan, even as a multi-state lawsuit over the rule’s legality looms. “As required by new legislation passed by the Legislature this year, the state Department of Environmental Protection has already initiated its feasibility study to determine what options may be available for West Virginia to meet these new standards,” Tomblin said Oct.

Davis calls out majority again in another DHHR dissent

CHARLESTON – West Virginia Supreme Court Justice Robin Davis again called out the court majority in a dissent filed this week, this time accusing her fellow justices of an “arrogant and complete disregard of federal law.” Davis dissented to an Oct. 15 opinion, in which a majority of the court’s justices ruled that the state Department of Health and Human Resources must follow an order issued by Kanawha Circuit Court Judge Louis “Duke” Boom in August 2014 to immediately restore access to patient

Justices lay into DHHR for psychiatric hospital 'noncompliance'

CHARLESTON – A majority of justices on the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals had harsh words earlier this month for the state Department of Health and Human Resources in the agency’s repeated “noncompliance” with prior orders and commitments to better patient care at two of the state’s psychiatric hospitals. In its Oct. 7 opinion, the majority of the state’s high court mostly upheld Kanawha Circuit Court Judge Louis “Duke” Bloom’s orders against the DHHR.

Morrisey gets 'critical victory' on EPA 'Waters' plan

CINCINNATI, Ohio – The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit has granted a motion that effectively blocks the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Environmental Protection Agency from enforcing a new rule that extends the federal agency’s authority to all bodies of water. The rule – known generally as the “Waters of the United States” rule – was published in the Federal Register June 29. The EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began enforcement Aug. 28.