The University of Baltimore Law Library Weblog
News and links of interest to the law school community
Friday, July 30, 2004
Thursday, July 29, 2004
Wednesday, July 28, 2004
Tuesday, July 27, 2004
Monday, July 26, 2004
Friday, July 23, 2004
Thursday, July 22, 2004
Wednesday, July 21, 2004
Tuesday, July 20, 2004
Monday, July 19, 2004
Friday, July 16, 2004
Thursday, July 15, 2004
Wednesday, July 14, 2004
Tuesday, July 13, 2004
Monday, July 12, 2004
Next Thursday, July 15, contractors will begin work on a substantial construction project that will reallocate space and upgrade facilities in the Law Library. In the first phase, scheduled to last about 3 weeks, interior walls between our current (and dysfunctional) bibliographic instruction room and adjoining storage and office space will be removed. The resulting space, with direct access to the 4th floor elevator lobby as well as the interior freight elevator, will be the new home of our Technical Services Department. At the same time, the current library staff lounge will be reconfigured, and a new office for the Assistant Director of Information Technology created.
The second stage takes place on the 3rd floor, after what we hope will be a speedy relocation of Technical Services to their new space. A new and improved bibliographic instruction area will be created with "smart classroom" technology. This room and its technology will be available for law student groups when not in use for instruction. Space will also be created for a reference alcove-- the new location of the Information Desk, and an office for the Assistant Director for Public Services. This phase should also take about 3 weeks.
Timing for this project is not, and cannot be, ideal. Regrettably, it will start in the days just before the bar exam. Although all the work in phase one will be behind existing walls, there will probably be some noise audible in at least parts of the library. We will check with the contractor and post work hours daily. Delaying the construction would create problems fitting in to the contractor's schedule. Also, the messiest and most disruptive portion of the work will be at the end when the reference alcove is built. By starting earlier, we hope to have the worst of it completed before the start of Fall classes.
Our thanks to the Dean and his staff for securing financing for the construction, and to the Physical Plant department for coordinating with the contractor to expedite the work. We look forward to welcoming you to our reconfigured facilities in the Fall.
Friday, July 09, 2004
From the Daily Record:
Report: Link juvenile, family cases
July 1, 2004
By LAWRENCE HURLEY,
Daily Record Legal Affairs Writer
Authors of a new study claim their research proves that further incorporation of juvenile delinquency proceedings in Maryland with the court system’s family division would benefit everyone involved, perhaps even leading to lower arrest rates.
A “one family, one judge” approach would make the best use of the resources of both the court system, the Department of Juvenile Services and related agencies, the University of Baltimore School of Law report concludes.
Professor Barbara A. Babb, who co-authored the study and heads the law school’s Center for Families, Children, and the Courts, believes the state has to build upon the reforms made in 1998, when a separate family division was first introduced.
“I don’t think anyone would dispute that problems that bring juveniles to court have their origins in cases that came before family court earlier,” Babb said. “By incorporating delinquency, it gives the courts the chance to intervene at an earlier stage.”
Babb and co-author Gloria Danziger, a senior fellow at the school, studied Delaware, Rhode Island, New Jersey and other states that already have unified systems.
In those states, the court assumes some of the responsibilities now held by the Department of Juvenile Services in Maryland, providing access to relevant treatments and monitoring the progress of the children.
Statistics suggest that the arrest rates for juveniles are lower in jurisdictions with unified family courts, the report notes.
Babb is hoping the study will kick-start further reform, noting that the 1998 legislation that led to the creation of the family court did envision juvenile proceedings being part of the end product.
Recommendations include giving the court responsibility for file complaints against juveniles, providing special training for family court judges, and judicial monitoring of substance abuse and other treatment programs.
The report has been welcomed by both Department of Juvenile Services Secretary Kenneth C. Montague Jr. and Baltimore City Circuit Judge Martin P. Welch, who currently heads the juvenile docket there.
Montague, a former state delegate who sponsored the legislation that created the family court, suggested that the only problem is how the system would work on a practical level — particularly in Baltimore City, which has a high number of juvenile cases.
“The concept is a viable one,” he said yesterday. “It’s important to get all the issues that confront a child in one place.”
However, the opening last fall of the new Baltimore City Juvenile Justice Center has created new logistical problems because the Gay Street complex is several blocks away from the family court, located in Courthouse East of the circuit court, Montague said.
Welch agreed, saying a unified system in the city would be “hard to achieve because of the sheer numbers” and the distance between the court buildings.
“It’s been discussed for the last four of five years,” he said. “Whether we can accomplish it is another issue.”
Danziger said the logistical problems could be at least partially resolved through the use of high-tech case management systems that would allow judges to call up information on all cases involving a certain family.
“The technology is critical in bringing together the different courts and agencies that provide services,” she explained.
Despite Montague’s enthusiasm, he concluded that it would be up to the judiciary — not the juvenile services department — to change the existing system with a rule change.
“It’s not my role to take the initiative,” he said.
Pamela Cardullo-Ortiz, executive director for family administration at the state’s Administrative Office of the Courts, said all jurisdictions are encouraged to incorporate juvenile proceedings into their family court dockets if at all possible.
She noted that, among larger jurisdictions, Montgomery County has been particularly successful, while smaller jurisdictions such as Carroll and Somerset counties have also made progress.
But Baltimore City remains “the big gorilla” and implementing reform there is much more challenging, she said.
Thursday, July 08, 2004
Tuesday, July 06, 2004
Friday, July 02, 2004
SCOTUSBlog - lots of interesting thoughts about the term just past.
Thursday, July 01, 2004
Ernie The Attorney: Internet Explorer - no longer ready for prime time. Hey, I've been using Mozilla as my web browser for years. I bet if you try it you'll never go back to IE.