News and information useful to Cleveland-Marshall College of Law students, faculty and staff.

Archive for October, 2011


Wireless Connection Blues?

Ethernet cords to the rescue! The Law Library has 4 ethernet cables available for check out at the Access Services Desk. Just ask for one the next time you sign out a study room. Each study room, and selected study carrels throughout the library, is equipped with a jack that you can just plug in to reach a direct internet connection. The I.S. & T. department of Cleveland State University is working hard to improve our present wireless situation. Until then, we recommend you use one of our handy ethernet cords to ensure that your precious study time is not interrupted.

Issue 2/Senate Bill 5 and the November 8th Election

Over the past year, it is likely you have talked with someone who had strong feelings for or against Senate Bill 5. Often it seems that those against the legislation have been more prominent in the media since the representation of the number five with a line through it has now become a recognizable symbol which everyone understands.

The beginnings of Senate Bill 5 were actually strongly influenced by Wisconsin legislation against collective bargaining for public employees in early March of this year. Following Wisconsin’s lead, John Kasich signed Senate Bill 5 into Ohio law on March 31, 2011.

This November, the public will have the opportunity to decide whether or not they wish to keep Senate Bill 5 or repeal it by voting on Issue 2.  A total of 1.3 million signatures were gathered to get this issue on the ballot, which is a million more than the minimum required. Voting “yes” on Issue 2 would retain the law while a negative answer would repeal it.

In making this decision, it is important that the public understands how Senate Bill 5 would affect Ohio. Those for keeping Senate Bill 5 emphasize that salaries or benefits themselves will not be cut. Yet, public employees will have to pay a higher percentage of their health and retirement benefits than before. Still, according to supporters, these costs would be less than the percentage that most individuals have to pay in the private sector. By saving these funds, supporters claim that fewer employees would need to be laid off and that the state budget would become more stable. Focusing especially on teachers, the legislation would also end the favoring of certain teachers simply because they have tenure. Instead, salary would be more performance oriented. Building a Better Ohio is one pro-Issue 2 organization.

Those against Senate Bill 5 stress that public employees actually earn less than those in the private sector (on average 6% less). By asking these employees to pay a higher percentage for their benefits, it is effectively decreasing salaries that are already below the average. Teachers and other public employees with families are especially concerned about how job security would change with Senate Bill 5 since years of service would become less important than performance. We Are Ohio is a prominent anti-Issue 2 organization.

No matter what your position, remember that voting “yes” on Issue 2 would retain Senate Bill 5 while a negative answer would repeal it. Please do your civil duty and vote on November 8th.

For more information, check out the following news articles:

Ohio SB5 Collective Bargaining Follows Efforts In Wisconsin and New Jersey

Taking sides on Issue 2: Retain Senate Bill 5

Cleveland Metro Bar Free CLEs

In honor of National Pro Bono Week, the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association is offering free CLEs to any attorney who is willing to accept a pro bono case or attend a pro bono clinic.  These very useful and timely CLEs include:

 

Registration

For questions, Email probono@lasclev.org

Wednesday Oct. 26 – Michael Ratner on Civil Rights in a Post 9/11 World

On Wednesday October 26, from 5:00 to 6:00pm, Michael Ratner will present his ideas on how civil rights have deteriorated since September 11, 2001, for the C|M|LAW community. The lecture will take place in the Moot Court Room and one free hour of CLE is offered for attending.

Michael Ratner is President of the Center for Constitutional Rights, a nonprofit legal organization dedicated to protecting the rights guaranteed by the United States Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. He served as co-counsel in the Supreme Court case of Rasul v. Bush, which established that detainees at Guantanamo Bay had the right to invoke habeas corpus. He continues to fight against the undermining of fundamental rights in the name of the “war on terror” by representing victims of torture, rendition, and domestic spying. He has taught at Yale Law School and Columbia University Law School and is the author of many books and articles. In 2006, he was included by the National Law Journal on the list of the “100 Most Influential Lawyers in America.” Mr. Ratner will speak about the erosion of civil rights following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.

iPad4Legal – Legal Apps for Your iPad

We’ve blogged quite a number of times about useful legal apps (like ones for Blackboard and TWEN, Law Pod, federal government info, and legal research on iPhones), but there’s always space on your mobile device for more apps, right?

So consider iPad4Legal. It’s a blog run by two law-savvy tech geeks, and it lists currently available iPad apps that are useful to the legal community. It also has a list of iPhone apps to watch, with the idea that these will be available for iPads soon.  Some iPad app examples: Ohio Revised Code, U.S. Code, Black’s Law Dictionary, 21 CFR 11 Pocket Guide, and the U.S. Government Manual.