October 8, 2014 |
Gay-rights advocates in Pennsylvania and throughout the country say they are encouraged by the U.S. Supreme Court's decision Monday not to take on five pending same-sex marriage appeals. The denial effectively legalized same-sex marriage in five states - Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia, and Wisconsin - and cleared the way for legalization in six others. Some advocates in the Philadelphia area viewed the court's action as a sign that nationwide legalization is just a matter of time.
September 26, 2014 |
Two Philadelphia Municipal Court judges were suspended Wednesday by the state Supreme Court, hours after a fellow judge admitted in a guilty plea that he reached out to them in an attempt to fix cases. The judges, Dawn Segal and Joseph O'Neill, will be suspended from hearing cases while their conduct is examined by the state's Judicial Conduct Board, said state Supreme Court Chief Justice Ronald D. Castille. Castille said the high court ordered the suspensions, with pay, after former Municipal Court Judge Joseph C. Waters Jr. pleaded guilty to corruption charges.
September 12, 2014 |
THE STATE Supreme Court is deciding whether Pennsylvania will add pen and paper to its mainly electronic voting system. Accuracies and constitutionality issues concerning the current voting system in most of the state were brought in front of the high court yesterday in City Hall. The appeal comes from a 2006 case that argued that votes cast using direct recording electronic machines, or DREs, leave opportunity for tampering because they don't create a physical record of a voter's choice, but rather store electronic records that can be printed later.
August 22, 2014 |
T HE JUDGE who put Philadelphia-born rapper Meek Mill in jail for probation violations overstepped her authority by trying to transform him in "Pygmalion-like fashion," his attorneys said in an appeal filed with the state Supreme Court. The appeal followed a hearing Monday during which Common Pleas Judge Genece Brinkley denied Mill's request to be released early from jail, where he has been serving a three-to-six-month sentence since July 11. In support of their claim that Brinkley had gone too far, attorneys for the rapper born Robert Williams noted that during an off-the-record discussion, the judge complained that she did not approve of the haircut or clothing Mill had worn on the "Conan O'Brien Show.
August 13, 2014 |
A robber who threatens to detonate a bomb can be convicted of a first-degree crime even if no explosives are actually found, the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled Monday. Ruling in two separate cases, the high court made bomb threats a more serious level of criminal offense and found that a menacing remark mentioning the devices during a robbery constitutes sufficient evidence of an immediate threat. "A robber does not have to pat his chest or shoe to reinforce the impression that he is carrying a bomb.
August 6, 2014 |
The Philadelphia School District has asked the state Supreme Court to swiftly reject a lawsuit that aims to block the sale of William Penn High School to Temple University. The cash-strapped schools desperately need the $15 million from the sale of the North Philadelphia property, according to court documents the district filed last week. The district's deficit - which already stands at $81 million - would grow by $11 million without the net proceeds from the sale. "Any delay in closing the sale and receiving these funds will harm the School District greatly," the district said in a court filing that asks the justices to act on the matter "as soon as reasonably possible.
July 2, 2014 |
The U.S. Supreme Court dealt a blow to the Obama administration's signature health care law Monday, ruling that employers with religious objections can refuse to pay for their employees' contraception in twin cases brought by a Lancaster County cabinet manufacturer and one of the nation's largest craft supply chains. In their 5-4 decision, the justices recognized for the first time that for-profit business - such as Conestoga Wood Specialties, owned by a Mennonite family in East Earl, and Oklahoma-based Hobby Lobby - can exercise religious views derived from their owners.
June 28, 2014 |
In what the Philadelphia teachers' union hailed as a major victory, the state Supreme Court said Thursday that it would not get involved in whether the School Reform Commission has the authority to bypass seniority and impose other work rule changes. In the spring, the commission asked the state's top court to declare that it had the power under the state takeover law to impose the changes, including disregarding seniority for teacher assignments, transfers, layoffs and recalls. The 11,000-member Philadelphia Federation of Teachers opposed the SRC's moves.
June 27, 2014 |
THE STATE SUPREME COURT will not weigh in on the School Reform Commission's authority to overhaul work rules for teachers, including disregarding seniority in assignments and layoffs. The court issued the order yesterday, with two of the seven justices dissenting. The one-page ruling does not explain why the court declined to hear the case. Both the SRC and the teachers union offered vastly different interpretations of the order, with the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers calling it a victory.
June 21, 2014 |
TRENTON - The New Jersey Senate on Thursday confirmed Gov. Christie's two picks to the state Supreme Court, sealing a breakthrough in a years-long impasse over the court's composition. Chief Justice Stuart Rabner was confirmed on a 29-6 vote after months of speculation about whether Christie would renominate him. The Republican governor had criticized Rabner's court as liberal and activist. The Senate also confirmed Lee Solomon, a Haddonfield Republican and state court judge, by a 34-2 vote.