August 20, 2019

Archives for January 13, 2014

e-Legislative Report: 1/13/14

At the Capitol – Legislature Returns to Work

Welcome Back!

Colorado lawmakers returned to the Capitol on Wednesday, Jan. 8 to start the Second Regular Session of the 69th General Assembly. Per our constitution, the legislative session will run for 120 days and conclude no later than May 7, 2014.

Keeping with custom and tradition, leadership in both the House and Senate gave opening day speeches showcasing their caucus’ legislative priorities for the session. Both parties stressed the importance of working together across party lines to get the work of the people and the state done. Links to each speech follows:

Senate President Morgan Carroll
Senate Minority Leader Bill Cadman
Speaker of the House Mark Ferrandino
House Minority Leader Brian DelGrosso

Cha, Cha, Changes…

The 2nd Regular Session of the 69th General Assembly will be memorable for the changes that occurred since the last time the legislature was in session in May. Recall elections in the state senate claimed two casualties and one resignation shift when a sitting senator stepped down to avoid a recall election. After the dust settled, the Democrat majority was reduced to 18–17 which is reduced from the previous 20–15 margin the Democrats enjoyed in the spring of 2013. In the September recall elections, Senate President John Morse (D-Colorado Springs) was unseated by Bernie Herpin (R-Colorado Springs) and Angela Giron (D-Pueblo) was defeated by George Rivera (R-Pueblo.) Facing a difficult recall election, incumbent Evie Hudak (D-Westminster) resigned her seat; she was replaced by Rachel Zenzinger (D-Arvada.)

The recall elections also brought changes in leadership in the Senate:

Morgan Carroll (D-Aurora) was selected as Senate President and Rollie Heath (D-Boulder) will serve as Senate Majority Leader.

There were two non-recall changes in the House:

In the House, Mark Waller (R-Colorado Springs) stepped down as Minority Leader to focus on his bid for Attorney General. Rep. Brian DelGrosso (R-Loveland) was selected by his peers to serve as the new Minority Leader.

The majority in the House remained unchanged with the Democrats enjoying a 37–28 majority; one member resigned and her replacement was named by a vacancy committee. Veteran legislator Claire Levy stepped down from here seat to take on the role of Executive Director of the Colorado Center on Law and Policy. K.C. Becker was selected by her district’s vacancy committee to serve the remainder of Rep. Levy’s term. Rep. Becker (D-Boulder) served on Boulder’s Planning Board before being elected to a four-year term of the Boulder city council in November 2009.

CBA Legislative Policy Committee

For readers who are new to CBA legislative activity, the Legislative Policy Committee (LPC) is the CBA’s legislative policy-making arm during the legislative session. The LPC meets weekly during the legislative session to determine CBA positions on requests from the various sections and committees of the Bar Association.

At its Dec. 13 meeting, the LPC voted to approve several amendments suggested by the Trust & Estate Section for inclusion of a Probate Code Omnibus legislation. Those proposed amendments now are bar sponsored and will be highlighted in detail once the bill is introduced.

Stay tuned for House and Senate bills of interest.

Colorado Supreme Court: Announcement Sheet, 1/13/14

On Monday, January 13, 2014, the Colorado Supreme Court issued three published opinions.

In re Young v. Jefferson County Sheriff

Hickerson v. Vessels

In re Marriage of Cardona and Castro

Summaries for these cases are forthcoming, courtesy of The Colorado Lawyer.

Neither State Judicial nor the Colorado Bar Association provides case summaries for unpublished appellate opinions. The case announcement sheet is available here.

Colorado Supreme Court: Allegations of Negligence Alone Not Sufficient to Overcome Immunity Granted to Police Officers

The Colorado Supreme Court issued its opinion in In re Young v. Jefferson County Sheriff on Monday, January 13, 2014.

Immunity for Law Enforcement Officers Transporting Juveniles—CRS § 19-2-508(7).

In this original CAR 21 proceeding, the Supreme Court held that the trial court erred in finding that allegations of negligence alone are sufficient to overcome the statutory grant of immunity and the presumption of good faith afforded to law enforcement officers pursuant to CRS § 19-2-508(7). Accordingly, a party seeking to rebut the presumption of good faith in § 19-2-508(7) must allege something more than negligence.

Summary and full case available here.

Tenth Circuit: Denial of Social Security Disability Affirmed

The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals published its opinion in Mays v. Colvin on Wednesday, January 8, 2014.

Rebecca Mays appealed from a district court order affirming the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) denial of her application for disability benefits. In assessing the residual functional capacity at step four, the ALJ found a residual functional capacity that allowed Mays to perform a full range of sedentary work. In making this finding, the ALJ found that the opinion of Mays’ treating physician, Dr. Chorley, was not consistent with the objective medical evidence.

Mays claimed that the SSA failed to provide a complete administrative record. Dr. Chorley changed his assessment of residual functional capacity, but the new version was mistakenly omitted in the eventual administrative record. Ms. Mays contends that the omission entailed a denial of due process and left the eventual findings without substantial evidence. The Tenth Circuit concluded that no due-process violation took place because Mays had not shown a likelihood of a different result if the ALJ had addressed Dr. Chorley’s amended report.

The  court also rejected Mays’s argument that the ALJ also failed to properly analyze the medical-source evidence and affirmed.

Tenth Circuit: Unpublished Opinions, 1/10/14

On Friday, January 10, 2014, the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals issued no published opinions and three unpublished opinions.

Crowe v. Clark

Pena v. Hartley

Kennedy v. Peele

Case summaries are not provided for unpublished opinions. However, published opinions are summarized and provided by Legal Connection.


Changes to Colorado Rules of Civil Procedure, Rules for Magistrates, and County Court Civil Procedure Announced

On Wednesday, January 8, 2014, the Colorado State Judicial Branch announced the final rules changes of 2013, Rule Change 2013(17) and Rule Change 2013(18), amended and adopted by the supreme court on December 31, 2013.

Rule Change 2013(17) amends § 1-26 of C.R.C.P. 121 and Rule 305.5 of the Colorado Rules of County Court Civil Procedure. The changes outline amended procedures for use of the state’s electronic filing system, ICCES, by pro hac vice or other out-of-state attorneys. The Comments to these rules have also been amended to reflect that ICCES is now the official e-filing system for Colorado.

Rule Change 2013(18) amends § 1-15 of C.R.C.P. 121 and Rule 7 of the Colorado Rules for Magistrates. The changes to C.R.C.P. 121 amend the time in which affidavits may be filed in support of motions. The changes to C.R.M. 7 specify that an order that effectively ends a case shall be subject to de novo review.

For the complete list of the Colorado Supreme Court’s rules changes, click here.

Tenth Circuit: Denial of Self-Defense and Involuntary Manslaughter Instructions Abuse of Discretion

The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals published its opinion in United States v. Toledo on Tuesday, January 7, 2013.

Defendant-Appellant Dhanzasikam Toledo appealed from his conviction of voluntary manslaughter. Although the district court instructed the jury on second degree murder and voluntary manslaughter, it denied Toledo’s request for self-defense and involuntary manslaughter instructions. After an argument, Toledo’s uncle lunged at him across a barbed wire fence that separated their two properties and Toledo stabbed him.

The Tenth Circuit held it was an abuse of discretion to deny Toledo’s request for a self-defense instruction because there was evidentiary support for the instruction when the defendant’s testimony was taken into consideration.

The court also held the denial of an involuntary manslaughter instruction was error. A reasonable jury could could conclude that Toledo’s actions were a reasonable response to the threat he perceived from his uncle. Given that, the evidence also could support another conclusion—that his actions, though taken in self-defense, were less than reasonable and amounted to criminal negligence. In that case, involuntary manslaughter would be a proper finding.

The court reversed and remanded for a new trial.

Tenth Circuit: Amended Maliscious Prosecution Decision

The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals published its opinion in Myers v. Koopman on Wednesday, January 8, 2013.

The court denied the appellee’s Petition for Panel Rehearing but sua sponte amended its December 20, 2013 decision, nunc  pro tunc, by removing a footnote sentence. The former decision was summarized here.

Tenth Circuit: Unpublished Opinions, 1/9/14

On Thursday, January 9, 2014, the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals issued no published opinions and five unpublished opinions.

United States v. Munoz-Rodriguez

Thompson v. Hartley

Driessen v. Home Loan State Bank

Benton v. Town of South Fork

United States v. Castro-Motta

Case summaries are not provided for unpublished opinions. However, published opinions are summarized and provided by Legal Connection.