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Three WSH Attorneys Named as New Partners in 2013

On December 13, WSH announced that attorneys Lillian M. Arango, Chad S. Friedman, and John J. Quick would be made Partners at the Firm. All three attorneys have been part of the WSH team for more than 10 years. Their first day as Partners will be January 1, 2013.

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Categories: Land Use & Zoning (Public)Environmental/SustainabilityLitigationLocal GovernmentAppellate Law & PracticeAwards & RecognitionsLand Use & Zoning (Private)
Tags: Awards & RecognitionsLillian M. ArangoChad S. FriedmanFort Lauderdale Business Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Business Litigation LawyersMiami Commercial Litigation AttorneyMiami Commercial Litigation LawyerSouth Florida Commercial Litigation AttorneySouth Florida Commercial Litigation LawyerFort Lauderdale Local Government LawMiami Local Government LawSouth Florida Local Government LawFort Lauderdale Municipal AttorneysMiami Municipal AttorneysSouth Florida Municipal AttorneysSouth Florida Business Dispute Litigation AttorneysSouth Florida Business Dispute Litigation LawyersFort Lauderdale Real Estate AttorneysMiami Real Estate AttorneysSouth Florida Real Estate AttorneysFort Lauderdale Commercial Real Estate AttorneysMiami Commercial Real Estate AttorneysSouth Florida Commercial Real Estate AttorneysFort Lauderdale Appellate Law AttorneysMiami Appellate Law AttorneysSouth Florida Appellate Law AttorneysFort Lauderdale LitigatorsMiami LitigatorsFort Lauderdale Environmental Law AttorneysMiami Environmental Law AttorneysSouth Florida Environmental Law Attorneys South Florida LitigatorsFlorida Commercial Litigation LawyerFort Lauderdale Civil Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Commercial Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Commercial Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Real Estate LawyerMiami Commercial Litigation AttorneyMiami Litigation AttorneyMiami Real Estate LawyerJohn J. Quick

WSH Obtains Appellate Victory For Town of Manalapan

On November 14, the Fourth District Court of Appeal issued a per curiam affirmance of the trial victory obtained by WSH Partner Daniel L. Abbott in a long-lasting battle between a homeowner and the Town of Manalapan over a zoning issue.

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Categories: Land Use & Zoning (Public)LitigationLocal Government
Tags: Governmental LitigationMunicipal GovernmentSpecial Counsel to Local GovernmentRule EnforcementDaniel L. AbbottMitchell A. BiermanJamie A. ColeChad S. FriedmanEdward G. GuedesMichael S. PopokJoseph H. SerotaSusan L. TrevarthenRichard Jay WeissDavid M. WolpinFort Lauderdale Local Government LawMiami Local Government LawSouth Florida Local Government LawMatthew H. MandelFort Lauderdale LitigatorsMiami LitigatorsSouth Florida LitigatorsFort Lauderdale Civil Litigation Attorneys
Author(s): Daniel L. Abbott

Fourth DCA Affirms Denial of Writ of Mandamus in Public Records Request; Finds No Abuse of Discretion by Municipality

The Fourth District Court of Appeal recently released a decision that provides municipalities and law enforcement with significant firepower against public records requests for information obtained in criminal investigations. In Harvard v. Village of Palm Springs, 11-1192, the issue was whether the Village of Palm Springs (the "Village") properly withheld law enforcement records, including a juvenile offense report and copy of a videotaped interview. The Fourth District sided with the Village, holding that the release was discretionary under 985.04(3) and that the investigation fell within one of the exemptions set forth in 119.071(2)(h)(1)a-c.

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Categories: LitigationGovernment AffairsLocal Government
Tags: Public RecordsGovernmental LitigationMunicipal GovernmentSpecial Counsel to Local GovernmentMitchell A. BiermanJamie A. ColeChad S. FriedmanRichard Jay WeissDavid M. WolpinFort Lauderdale Governmental Affairs AttorneysMiami Governmental Affairs AttorneysSouth Florida Governmental Affairs AttorneysFort Lauderdale Municipal AttorneysMiami Municipal AttorneysSouth Florida Municipal AttorneysFort Lauderdale LitigatorsMiami LitigatorsSouth Florida Litigators
Author(s): John J. Quick & Brooke P. Dolara

The Red Light Camera Diaries: Sarasota County Denies Due Process Challenge Brought by Driver

Last week, we reported that a Polk County judge denied a Motion to Dismiss brought by 40 ticketed drivers challenging red light camera citiations on constitutional grounds.  In that case, the court rejected the drivers' argument that issuance of citations generated by red light camera violations violated the equal protection clausen. On August 29, a County Court judge in Sarasota County denied a Motion to Dismiss brought by a defendant driver who had been issued a red light camera citation. County Court Judge Kimberly Bonnner held that the defendant failed to prove that the issuance of a citation for red light camera violations did not constitute a violation of the due process clause.

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Categories: LitigationGovernment AffairsLocal GovernmentConstitutional Law
Tags: Governmental LitigationMunicipal GovernmentRed Light CamerasRule EnforcementMitchell A. BiermanJamie A. ColeChad S. FriedmanEdward G. GuedesMichael S. PopokJoseph H. SerotaRichard Jay WeissLaura K. WendellDavid M. WolpinFlorida ConstitutionFort Lauderdale Local Government LawMiami Local Government LawSouth Florida Local Government LawFort Lauderdale Governmental Affairs AttorneysMiami Governmental Affairs AttorneysSouth Florida Governmental Affairs AttorneysFort Lauderdale Municipal AttorneysMiami Municipal AttorneysSouth Florida Municipal AttorneysMatthew H. MandelFort Lauderdale Appellate Law AttorneysMiami Appellate Law AttorneysSouth Florida Appellate Law AttorneysFort Lauderdale LitigatorsMiami LitigatorsFort Lauderdale Constitutional Law AttorneysMiami Constitutional Law AttorneysSouth Florida Constitutional Law AttorneysSouth Florida LitigatorsFlorida Litigation AttorneysMiami Litigation Attorney
Author(s): Brooke P. Dolara

House Bill 937: Give Me a Break! (At Least a Little One on Advertising Costs)

Section 50.061, Florida Statutes regulates the amount a publisher of a newspaper can charge local governments for the publishing of any and all official public notices or legal advertisements. The cost of advertisements can vary in price from a couple hundred dollars to several thousand dollars for a comprehensive plan amendment and certain government initiated zoning ordinances. Over the last couple of years, the Florida Legislature has considered several different bills that would help to reduce the cost of publishing legal advertisements. On May 4, 2012, the Governor signed House Bill 937 (the “Bill”), which may provide some relief to local governments when publishing an advertisement that requires multiple publications.

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Categories: Land Use & Zoning (Public)Government Affairs
Tags: Chad S. FriedmanSusan L. TrevarthenFlorida LegislatureFort Lauderdale Local Government LawMiami Local Government LawSouth Florida Local Government LawFort Lauderdale Governmental Affairs AttorneysMiami Governmental Affairs AttorneysSouth Florida Governmental Affairs Attorneys
Author(s): Chad S. Friedman

Town of Cutler Bay Receives Award for Revolutionary Green Initiative PACE Program

The Florida League of Cities awarded the Town of Cutler Bay with the Environmental Stewardship Award for its Go Green Initiative, and specifically for its revolutionary Property Assessed Clean Energy District (PACE) Program. The Town was the first governmental entity in Miami-Dade County to achieve the Florida Green Building Coalition’s Silver Certification. WSH Associate Chad S. Friedman worked with the Town on its Green Initiative from its inception, drafting legislation at the state and county level and researching similar programs. The PACE Program is the country’s first partnership among cities aimed at reducing their carbon footprint. Over the next five years, the program is predicted to reduce carbon dioxide output by more than 35,000 metric tons, as well as stimulate the local economy by $735 million and create 4,500 jobs.

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Categories: Environmental/SustainabilityLand Use & Zoning (Private)
Tags: Municipal GovernmentChad S. FriedmanGilberto PastorizaClifford A. SchulmanSusan L. TrevarthenSouth Florida Private Transactions AttorneysSouth Florida Private Transactions LawyersFort Lauderdale Private Transactions AttorneysMiami Private Transactions AttorneysSouth Florida Public Transactions LawFort Lauderdale Public Transactions LawMiami Public Transactions Law Fort Lauderdale Environmental Law AttorneysMiami Environmental Law AttorneysSouth Florida Environmental Law Attorneys
Author(s): Brooke P. Dolara

Eleventh Circuit Upholds County's Nude Dancing Ban, Despite Strip Club's Unsavory Allegations Against Lower Court Judge

The Eleventh Circuit recently upheld a Spaulding County, Georgia ordinance banning nude dancing in places where alcohol is sold. In holding for the County, the Court also upheld the Order of Summary Judgment by the District Court Jack Camp, a judge who was all-too familiar with the subject matter of after-hours entertainment.

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Categories: Land Use & Zoning (Public)LitigationGovernment AffairsLocal GovernmentFederal LawFederal Courts
Tags: Governmental LitigationMunicipal GovernmentSpecial Counsel to Local GovernmentJamie A. ColeChad S. FriedmanEdward G. GuedesMichael S. PopokSusan L. TrevarthenFort Lauderdale Municipal AttorneysMiami Municipal AttorneysSouth Florida Municipal AttorneysMatthew H. MandelFort Lauderdale Appellate Law AttorneysMiami Appellate Law AttorneysSouth Florida Appellate Law AttorneysFort Lauderdale LitigatorsMiami LitigatorsSouth Florida LitigatorsEleventh Circuit Court of AppealsFlorida Litigation AttorneysMiami Litigation Attorney
Author(s): Brooke P. Dolara

Former Broward Teachers’ Union President Arrested for Numerous Offenses Against Union

On Tuesday, former Broward Teachers’ Union (“BTU”) President Pat Santeramo surrendered to authorities after he was charged with racketeering, grand theft, campaign contribution violations and money laundering. The arrest warrant alleges that Mr. Santeramo charged union credit cards for personal expenses, fraudulently obtained compensation for sick and vacation leave that he was not entitled to, and orchestrated an illegal campaign contribution scheme under which BTU members would be reimbursed with union funds after writing checks to political candidates. Mr. Santeramo is also charged with receiving numerous kickbacks from South Florida vendors while billing the union for the incurred expenses.

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Categories: Labor and EmploymentGovernment AffairsLocal GovernmentCriminal Law
Tags: Public EmployeesPublic EmployersMunicipal GovernmentEthicsSpecial Counsel to Local GovernmentMitchell A. BiermanJamie A. ColeChad S. FriedmanAlan L. GabrielBrett J. SchneiderRichard Jay WeissDavid M. WolpinFort Lauderdale Local Government LawSouth Florida Local Government LawFort Lauderdale Governmental Affairs AttorneysMiami Governmental Affairs AttorneysSouth Florida Governmental Affairs AttorneysFort Lauderdale Municipal AttorneysMiami Municipal AttorneysSouth Florida Municipal AttorneysFort Lauderdale Employment Law AttorneysMiami Employment Law AttorneysSouth Florida Employment Law AttorneysFort Lauderdale Labor Law AttorneysMiami Labor Law AttorneysSouth Florida Labor Law AttorneysFlorida Employment AttorneysFlorida Labor LawyersFort Lauderdale Employment LawyerFort Lauderdale Employment LawyerMiami Employment AttorneyMiami Employment AttorneySouth Florida Employment Lawyers
Author(s): Michael S. Popok & Brooke P. Dolara

WSH Partner Ed Guedes Wins Appeal Before Third District Court of Appeal for Miami-Dade School Board

WSH was recently retained by the Miami-Dade School Board to take the lead in a difficult, ongoing appeal before the Third District Court of Appeal of a decision by the State Board of Education. The ruling had overturned the School Board’s politically sensitive decision to terminate the charter of an existing charter school, which the School Board had determined was performing poorly and jeopardizing the students’ education. After the School Board’s decision to revoke the charter, the school appealed the decision to the State Board of Education in Tallahassee. Despite a recommendation from the Charter School Appeal Commission favorable to the School Board, the State Board of Education rejected the recommendation and upheld the school’s appeal, directing the School Board to reinstate the school’s charter.

The School Board appealed the decision to the Third District Court of Appeal, and WSH, led by Appellate Practice Group Chair Edward G. Guedes, stepped in to complete the briefing for the School Board and handle the oral argument. In The School Board of Miami-Dade County, Florida v. Rise Academy of South Dade Charter School, The Third District reversed the State Board’s decision, finding that the decision was erroneous under “any standard of review,” and remanded the matter to the State Board with directions to deny the charter school’s appeal, thus upholding the School Board’s original decision.

To read a copy of the Opinion, please click here.

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Categories: LitigationGovernment AffairsLocal GovernmentAppellate Law & PracticeFederal Law
Tags: Governmental LitigationSpecial Counsel to Local GovernmentMitchell A. BiermanJamie A. ColeChad S. FriedmanEdward G. GuedesMichael S. PopokJoseph H. SerotaRichard Jay WeissLaura K. WendellDavid M. WolpinFort Lauderdale Local Government LawMiami Local Government LawSouth Florida Local Government LawFort Lauderdale Governmental Affairs AttorneysMiami Governmental Affairs AttorneysSouth Florida Governmental Affairs AttorneysMatthew H. MandelFort Lauderdale Appellate Law AttorneysMiami Appellate Law AttorneysSouth Florida Appellate Law AttorneysFort Lauderdale LitigatorsMiami LitigatorsSouth Florida LitigatorsFlorida Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Civil Litigation AttorneysMiami Litigation Attorney
Author(s): Edward G. Guedes

City of Baltimore Sues Major Banks, Alleging Antitrust Violations

In 2011, the city of Baltimore and the New Britain Firefighters' Benefit Fund sued more than a dozen major U.S. banks, alleging that the banks engaged in antitrust violations that resulted in injured investment returns for the plaintiffs.  Specifically, the plaintiffs allege that the banks manipulated the Libor, a key metric that sets interest rates using data computed daily from domestic and international banks.  The plaintiffs claim that by "suppressing" the Libor, the banks concealed their level of risk during the financial crisis.  The allegations of wrongdoing carry serious weight: last week, the British banking behemoth Barclays Plc agreed to pay U.S. and British regulators $455 million in fines for manipulating the Libor.

The case is being litigated in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.  Most recently, the banks filed a Motion to Dismiss , arguing that the evidence does not support the existence of a conspiracy to manipulate rates.  

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Categories: LitigationGovernment AffairsLocal GovernmentFederal Courts
Tags: Governmental LitigationMunicipal GovernmentSpecial Counsel to Local GovernmentMitchell A. BiermanJamie A. ColeChad S. FriedmanEdward G. GuedesMichael S. PopokJoseph H. SerotaRichard Jay WeissDavid M. WolpinMiami Commercial Litigation AttorneyMiami Commercial Litigation LawyerSouth Florida Commercial Litigation AttorneySouth Florida Commercial Litigation LawyerFort Lauderdale Local Government LawMiami Local Government LawSouth Florida Local Government LawFort Lauderdale Governmental Affairs AttorneysMiami Governmental Affairs AttorneysSouth Florida Governmental Affairs AttorneysFort Lauderdale Municipal AttorneysMiami Municipal AttorneysSouth Florida Municipal AttorneysMatthew H. MandelFort Lauderdale LitigatorsMiami LitigatorsSouth Florida LitigatorsFlorida Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Civil Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Commercial Litigation AttorneysFort Lauderdale Commercial Litigation AttorneysMiami Commercial Litigation AttorneyMiami Litigation Attorney
Author(s): Michael S. Popok