HAWAII STATE BAR ASSOCIATION
1132 Bishop Street, Suite 906
Honolulu, HI 96813
Friday, April 4, 2008, 3:00 p.m.
1. CALL TO ORDER
President Jeffrey Sia called the meeting to order at 3:15 p.m. with a quorum present. The following persons were present for all or part of the meeting:
Rai Saint Chu
Douglas Moore (by phone)
P. Gregory Frey
Hugh Jones (by phone)
Ronette Kawakami (by phone)
Board Members Absent
2. APPROVAL OF MINUTES – Minutes of the February board meeting were approved by consensus.
3. TREASURER’S REPORT – Treasurer Douglas Moore reported that HSBA records for the first two months of 2008 are on budget. See written financial statements for more detail.
a. Rule 17 Committee (Judiciary) – Jeff Sia scheduled to meet on April 17, 2008
b. Rule 17 Committee (HSBA) – Same comment as 4a.
c. Strategic Planning Committee - next meeting on April 22nd.
d. Kona Courthouse Committee – funding was cut by House.
e. Legislative Report (see agenda item 4.e. and Exhibit A)
Action taken: A motion was made, seconded, and carried without opposition not to support SB 3202 which proposed a constitutional amendment to raise the mandatory retirement age for Justices/Judges on the grounds that a task force to review the retirement age urged by the HSBA two years ago has not been undertaken. HSBA to draft testimony opposing SB 3202 and constitutional amendment.
5. EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S REPORT - Executive Director Lyn Flanigan reported that approximately 60 members were place on administrative suspension due to non-payment of dues and fees; 2347 members reported having professional liability insurance; results of pro bono reporting need further analysis. She also announced that the July 19th annual fundraiser dinner will feature a video contest themed “Aloha State Stories: The Promise of Justice for All” and a silent auction. Board members were encouraged to donate unique auction items and to encourage table sales. See written Executive Director’s report for more information.
6. YLD REPORT – YLD President Jill Hasegawa reported that volunteers are needed for: a) the Junior Judges project at Aiea, Wahiawa, Waipahu, Nanakuli, Ewa Beach, Pearlridge; b) Law Week Clinics at shopping centers on April 26th; c) Ready-for-the-World project in mid-May; d) Mock Trial Program, which the YLD has agreed to take over from the Hawaii Friends of Civic and Law-Related Education.
7. UNFINISHED BUSINESS
a. Practice of Law Definition (see agenda item 7.a. and Exhibit B) -President Sia stated that a president’s email was sent to explain the status of the proposed rule on the definition of the practice of law. It was also noted that professional groups concerned that their practice is restricted by the UPL Rule have been successful in adding an amendment to an unrelated legislative bill that would exempt these professional groups from the restrictions of the UPL rule.
Action taken: A motion was made, seconded, and carried without opposition to ratify testimony submitted by HSBA that opposed attempts by other professional groups to amend pending legislation to exempt those groups from any “practice of law” rule to be implemented by the Supreme Court.
b. Proposed Amendments to Board Policies on Judicial Selection and Communication by the HSBA Spokesperson (see agenda item 7.b. and Exhibit C) - Director Steve Chow highlighted the proposed amendments that the Committee worked on.
Action taken: After discussion, a motion was made, seconded, and carried without opposition to approve the proposed amendments to the policy manual regarding board procedures on the judicial selection process and communication by the HSBA spokesperson, while the committee analyzes the 3-tier rating system and notes its pros and cons for presentation to the board at a future meeting.
c. Access to Justice Commission (see agenda item 7.c. and Exhibit D) - Appointment of four HSBA members on the Access to Justice Commission will be made at the next board meeting.
d. Pro Bono-Service Award (see agenda item 7.d. and Exhibit E)
Action taken: After discussion, a motion was made, seconded, and carried without opposition to approve the Executive Committee’s recommendation of presenting the next Pro Bono-Service Award to George Zweibel.
e. Proposed Amendment to RSCH 17(d) regarding New Membership Category (see agenda item 7.e.) - FYI.
f. Inventory Attorney Requirement for Solo Practitioners (see agenda item 7.f.)
Action taken: A motion was made, seconded, and carried without opposition to approve the Executive Committee’s recommendation to respond to the Commission on Professionalism that it does not support the establishment of a new rule, due to numerous issues involved, to require solo practitioners to designate an “inventory attorney” in case of incapacitation by the solo practitioner.
g. “Of Counsel” Status (see agenda item 7.g.)
Action taken: A motion was made, seconded, and carried without opposition to approve the Executive Committee’s recommendation to respond to the Commission on Professionalism that it has no comment on the Disciplinary Board’s opinion regarding the use of the term “of counsel.”
h. Expansion of HSBA Premises (see agenda item 7.h. and handout material) - Ms. Flanigan discussed HSBA’s need for additional office space and the upcoming expiration of its current 10-year lease in January 2010. She explained that the facilities committee has explored options to buy space, but found that it was not justified in this market. The committee recommends
instead taking additional space in the currently vacant adjacent premises, which would avoid relocation costs. Ms. Flanigan requested approval to begin negotiations with the landlord on the space.
Action taken: After discussion, a motion was made, seconded, and carried without opposition to approve the Executive Committee’s recommendation to authorize the Executive Director to begin negotiations with the landlord on its proposal for expansion of HSBA’s current space.
8. NEW BUSINESS
a. Appointment of HSBA and Supreme Court Nominating Committees (see Exhibit H)
Action taken: A motion was made, seconded, and carried without opposition to ratify President Sia’s appointment of members to the Nominating Committees of the Supreme Court (Lorraine Akiba, Lissa Andrews, Douglas Crosier, Leighton Oshima) and the HSBA (the same four plus Joseph Kamelamela and Jodi Yi).
b. Request by Judiciary Rule 19 Committee for HSBA Email Addresses (see agenda item 8.b. and Exhibit I) – the Board discussed their concerns about the request by the Judiciary’s Rule 19 Committee that the HSBA share email addresses of active members to assist the Rule 19 pilot project of conducting evaluations electronically. After discussion about the importance of maintaining the security and confidentiality of HSBA member email addresses and the desire to participate with the Rule 19 evaluation, the Board agreed that Ms. Flanigan work with the Rule 19 Committee to establish a secure means of cooperating.
9. ADJOURNMENT: The meeting adjourned at 5:20 p.m.
HSBA Executive Director
Carolyn M. Yu