January 16, 2021

Governor Shumlin wants Entergy to pay Vermont’s legal expenses

first_imgNorthstar Vermont Yankee,by Anne Galloway, www.vtdigger.org(link is external) April 30, 2011 The Shumlin administration wants Entergy Corp to pay for any legal expenses the state may incur as it defends itself against a lawsuit Entergy initiated against the state two weeks ago.That counterintuitive payment approach is called a ‘billback,’ according to a Department of Public Service official, who assured the Senate Finance Committee on Friday, such legal maneuvers are ‘an age-old tradition.’If the state, for example, was bringing a case in front of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, it could charge Entergy for the cost of hiring experts and lawyers, according to Sarah Hofmann, deputy commissioner of the Department of Public Service. The ‘causer,’ or the entity that caused the need for a legal suit, is liable for the cost, she said.The ‘bill backs’ would be effective immediately if the Legislature adopts the new statutory language as part of H.56, the omnibus energy bill, which was unanimously voted out of committee on Friday. The bill will go to the floor of the Senate early next week.The change in statute would make Entergy Corp. liable for the state’s legal expenses, including responses to public records requests and the preparation of litigation in the case, which the corporation lodged against the state in U.S District Court in Burlington.Entergy alleges that the state went back on its word when the Legislature passed a law in 2006 requiring Entergy to obtain permission from lawmakers on a license extension for Vermont Yankee, which is, under a 2002 memorandum of understanding, set to shut down March 21, 2012. The Louisiana-based nuclear power company’s case is based on the question of pre-emption. Entergy argues in its complaint that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, which approved a new license for the company in March, has pre-emptive authority over state law.Attorney General Bill Sorrell has said the suit could be protracted and potentially costly if it goes all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. CORRECTED Just this week, Sorrell’s office may have lost a data mining case heard by the Supreme Court Justices. Cheryl Hanna, a legal expert and professorwith Vermont Law School, wrote in an opinion piece last week that sheanticipates if Vermont loses the case, in which it defended a new law regulating access to physician records, it will likely cost the state about $1 million.A court would rule on who would pay the damages in the Entergy lawsuit, Hofmann said. And the state, if it loses, could be responsible for not only its own legal costs, but also those of the plaintiff.Sen. Randy Brock, R-Grand Isle-Franklin, asked Hofmann: ‘Is it common that if someone sues us that they charge us legal fees for representing us in that lawsuit?’He put it another way: ‘If a state vehicle runs me over and I sue the state, the state requires me to pay for experts hired by the state to testify against me.’Hofmann replied that ‘It’s not unusual to see a bill back for the cost to the causer.’ At the end of the litigation, the federal judge decides who gets awards for attorneys’ fees and costs.The Vermont Attorney General’s office and Shumlin’s legal counsel Beth Robinson support the change in statute.‘We stand firmly behind the language,’ Robinson said. ‘We think it’s the right thing to do.’  Anne Galloway is editor of vtdigger.orglast_img read more

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Los Angeles Lakers finish with winning bid on Carlos Boozer

first_img“He told me he’s going to come back and carry the team. I believe him,” said World Peace, who helped the Lakers to an NBA title in 2010. “If he wants something that bad, he can get it.”A source familiar with World Peace’s thinking said he would love playing with the Lakers, Clippers or Knicks, who waived him last season through a buyout. But there is a sense that if the Lakers have had contact with World Peace’s representatives, those discussions currently have not advanced beyond anything preliminary. World Peace added teams from China, Russia and Turkey are also interested. “I’m not retiring from basketball because I’m in great shape,” said World Peace, who said he has healed from a right knee injury that hampered him last season. “There’s a couple of teams that we might be looking at. But they’re trying to find guys they believe can help them win a championship. They might be looking in the wrong direction. There’s no better direction than picking up me.” Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Boozer averaged 13.7 points and 8.3 rebounds through 76 appearances with the Bulls, but he faced reduced playing time amid concerns about his defense. Whoever the Lakers hire as their next head coach will also have to figure out how to assort the team’s crowded frontcourt. Such options will include seventh overall pick Julius Randle and Ed Davis, whom the Lakers reportedly agreed to terms this week believed on a two-year deal. The Lakers also have Jordan Hill and Robert Sacre, both of whom will play at center. The Lakers also hope to re-sign Ryan Kelly, who was given a $1.1 million qualiying offer to make him a restricted free agent. At PeaceMetta World Peace was back in Los Angeles on Wednesday for the 2014 ESPY awards, eager to share a litany of laughs. That included his explanation for the Lakers finishing 27-55 last season. “Sometimes you have to go to sleep and take a break,” said World Peace, whom the Lakers waived in 2013 through the amnesty provision. “They’re like a sleeping bear. They’ll wake up out of hibernation and then get back on top.”Lots of that hinges on Kobe Bryant, who played in six games last season amid injuries to his left Achilles tendon and left knee. center_img The Lakers’ once-barren roster suddenly has become loaded with frontcourt players. The latest move entailed Wednesday’s winning bid to pick up former Bulls forward Carlos Boozer, according to a league source familiar with the situation.The Bulls waived Boozer this week through the so-called amnesty provision, which requires the team to still pay the $16.8 million left on his remaining contract, albeit without the money counting against the team’s salary cap. The Lakers’ bid price, believed to be at $3.2 million, offsets the balance that the Bulls still owe the 12-year NBA veteran.“Carlos is an established veteran and a proven all-star, who will be a welcome addition to our team,” Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak said in a statement. “We’re very pleased to have won the bidding process and to have gained his rights, and look forward to his contributions next season.”The Lakers opted to pick Boozer up this way instead of including him in a sign-and-trade to facilitate Pau Gasol’s defection to Chicago because of the obvious price difference. But the NBA’s current labor deal prohibits players picked up through an amnesty claim, such as Boozer, to be traded at any point during the season. Still, the Lakers believed the monetary savings trumped that factor. last_img read more

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