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NEWS
November 28, 2013 | By Jeremy Roebuck, Inquirer Staff Writer
A Lancaster County cabinet maker who says the Affordable Care Act's mandate on contraception coverage violates his business' religious rights will have the chance to argue his case before the U.S. Supreme Court next year. Justices on Tuesday chose an appeal from Conestoga Wood Specialties Corp. of East Earl as one of two they will hear on an issue that has divided lower courts and become the subject of roughly 40 lawsuits from companies seeking exemption from having to cover birth control for their employees.
NEWS
November 20, 2013 | By Maddie Hanna, Inquirer Trenton Bureau
TRENTON Judge Faustino Fernandez-Vina of Camden County won unanimous approval Monday from the New Jersey Senate to serve on the state Supreme Court. The Superior Court assignment judge is to be sworn in Tuesday and will participate in oral arguments later in the morning, court officials said. Fernandez-Vina, who the Christie administration said is a Republican, replaces Republican Helen Hoens on the seven-member court, which has two vacancies. In August, Gov. Christie announced that he would not renominate Hoens amid a battle with the Legislature's majority Democrats over the court's partisan balance, and nominated Fernandez-Vina.
NEWS
November 7, 2013 | By Jan Hefler, Inquirer Staff Writer
A vote to approve a settlement in the Mount Holly housing bias case will not be held this evening as planned, according to a cryptic news release issued by the township council less than four hours before the 7 p.m. meeting. But the meeting has not been canceled and will be held at the Holbein School, 333 Levis Drive. The civil rights case, which is scheduled for a hearing before the U.S. Supreme Court on Dec. 4, involves a group of 30 low-income residents who contend the town's plans to demolish their homes and redevelop the Mount Holly Gardens neighborhood are discriminatory.
NEWS
November 1, 2013 | By Craig R. McCoy, Inquirer Staff Writer
Chief Justice Ronald D. Castille of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court said Wednesday that if reelected next week, he would push to ban judges from hiring relatives or hearing cases brought by lawyers who have made substantial contributions to their campaigns. In a meeting with the Inquirer Editorial Board, Castille said an overhaul of the state's Code of Judicial Conduct was among his main goals should he win retention. Castille, a Republican, has been on the court for nearly three decades and its chief since 2008.
NEWS
October 17, 2013 | By Rita Giordano, Inquirer Staff Writer
Now it's up to the state Supreme Court to decide whether New Jersey starts permitting same-sex marriage next week. On Tuesday, the lawyers for the couples and their children who brought the lawsuit Garden State Equality v. Dow filed a brief opposing the state's effort to halt the marriages. The state's highest court had announced Friday that it was taking up the Christie administration's appeal of Superior Court Judge Mary C. Jacobson's landmark Sept. 27 decision, as well as her refusal to issue a stay on her order that same-sex marriages be permitted starting Monday.
NEWS
September 28, 2013 | By Maddie Hanna amd Melanie Burney, Inquirer Trenton Bureau
TRENTON - In a narrow ruling, the New Jersey Supreme Court on Thursday ordered the state to rewrite its rules on how many homes municipalities must provide for lower-income residents, striking down provisions that opponents said allowed wealthy towns to avoid building affordable housing. The long-awaited decision is the latest in a string of rulings in the landmark Mount Laurel case, which dates to the 1970s. The case is considered one of the most important civil rights decisions of modern times.
NEWS
September 22, 2013 | By Ben Finley, Inquirer Staff Writer
A Lancaster County furniture company could get the chance to tell the U.S. Supreme Court why - on religious grounds - it shouldn't have to pay for its employees' birth-control costs. Attorneys for the Mennonite-owned Conestoga Wood Specialties Corp. filed a petition this week to argue before the nation's highest court after losing in federal court in Philadelphia. Even if the Supreme Court doesn't pick up Conestoga's case, it still is likely to weigh in on the federal government's contraception mandate, legal experts say. That's because the Obama administration also wants the Supreme Court to settle the matter.
NEWS
September 12, 2013 | By Craig R. McCoy, Inquirer Staff Writer
Right after Philadelphia Traffic Court Judge Mark A. Bruno was indicted in a federal ticket-fixing probe, the state Supreme Court landed on him hard, suspending him without pay. But then, another judicial oversight organization weighed in. Not so fast, said the state Court of Judicial Discipline. In May, that panel ruled that the federal case against Bruno was weak and ordered his pay - but not his duties - reinstated until his criminal trial. With those rival rulings as a backdrop, a lawyer for the Judicial Conduct Board, the investigative and prosecutorial arm of the judicial court, stood in court Tuesday to argue that the Supreme Court needed to butt out - that it was the job of the conduct board and its judicial court to suspend judges.
NEWS
August 29, 2013 | By Jan Hefler, Inquirer Staff Writer
After Susan Dow learned of her lover's affair, she moved out of the Cinnaminson house they had shared, called him nearly 90 times over the next few days, told his new mistress to leave her man alone, and then returned with a gun, authorities said. Dow was convicted of murdering William "Mike" Seidle, 48, a forklift driver she had been with for six months, after a jury found she had shot him in the chest. The British national was sentenced to 30 years in prison. An appeals panel overturned the verdict this month, citing judicial and prosecutorial missteps, and sent the case back to the lower court for a new trial.
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