President Duarte calls opposition media “enemy of the country”

first_imgNews ParaguayAmericas Help by sharing this information Reporters Without Borders today deplored the “outrageous” charge by President Nicanor Duarte Frutos that opposition media were “enemies of the country” and expressed concern about growing intimidation of local media outlets in the run-up to national elections due next April.Duarte charged that the opposition media wanted to “destroy the future of our country and the dreams of our citizens” when he inaugurated low-cost housing in the eastern town of Guarambaré on 12 November. Two journalists of the daily ABC Color were threatened by officials of the ruling Colorado Party last month for printing criticism of politicians. The party has been in power for the past 60 years.The worldwide press freedom organisation said Duarte, like Colombian President Alvaro Uribe and Bolivian President Evo Morales, was making the media a scapegoat because it criticised the government. “Free elections mean the public is free to criticise politicians and can never be used, under the pretext of democratic legitimacy, to obstruct the media in its job of reflecting public opinion,” it said.Duarte accused media owners of “amassing their fortunes by exploiting workers” and said they prospered the more they “sucked the blood of the people.”A candidate for the governorship of the southern province of Caaguazú, Francisco Alvarenga, who has a reputation for violence, threatened last month to kill the ABC Color correspondent in Coronel Oviedo, Carlos Mariano Godoy. Alvarenga phoned the journalist and warned that if he was not a candidate he would have tracked him down and shot him, saying it was easy for him to kill someone and that he would get even with Godoy, who had written about him in a series of profiles of candidates with bad reputations.The paper’s correspondent in San Lorenzo, near Asunción, Aldo Benítez, was threatened for the same reason by the mayor of Piribebuy, Cayo González, brother of defence minister Roberto González, and parliamentary candidate Víctor González.Frutos, elected in 2003, is constitutionally barred from standing again at the 20 April elections next year. RSF_en Organisation News February 14, 2020 Find out more Latin America’s community radio – a key service but vulnerable Reporters Without Borders deplored President Duarte’s attack on the the opposition media and said such behaviour by Latin American leaders was becoming a bad habit. Brazilian journalist murdered at home in Paraguay Reporter killed in ambush after police protection withdrawn November 14, 2007 – Updated on January 20, 2016 President Duarte calls opposition media “enemy of the country” February 10, 2017 Find out more October 20, 2014 Find out more News Follow the news on Paraguay to go further ParaguayAmericas News Receive email alertslast_img read more

Cyber-censorship continues for Chinese-language websites

first_img News RSF_en Democracies need “reciprocity mechanism” to combat propaganda by authoritarian regimes June 2, 2021 Find out more Receive email alerts News Reporters Without Borders condemns the continuing online censorship just two days before the Beijing Olympic Games opening ceremony. The authorities unblocked access to certain websites on 1 August, including the Reporters Without Borders website, which had been inaccessible since 2003. But the Chinese-language versions of these sites still cannot be accessed. For example, the home page of Radio France Internationale’s Mandarin site is accessible but the links to all the other pages are blocked.“The partial lifting of online censorship was just another government public relations operation,” Reporters Without Borders said. “ Nothing or almost nothing has changed for Chinese Internet users as very few Mandarin sites have been unblocked. Content referring to human rights, the Tibet region or the Tiananmen Square massacre is still blocked.”The press freedom organisation added: “At the same time as they unblocked certain websites, the authorities blocked access to censorship circumvention tools. Chinese Internet users who do not read English have no option but to go to the websites the Party has decided to make available.” Since 1 August, Radio France Internationale’s Mandarin site has been available for only an hour a day in certain regions of China while its French-language site has been blocked several times. The sites of several human rights organisations such as China Debate or Tiananmen Mothers continue to be unaccessible.Wikipedia’s Chinese-language version is accessible but carefully filtered. Before the government’s decision to change its Internet rules, the site was only intermittently accessible. Chinese online censorship is one of the most precise in the world. The authorities use keyword censorship, which enables them to choose exactly what content can be seen online. The first keywords involving the Olympic Games were introduced in May 2007 and have been regularly updated since then.Access to the Tor website that offers online censorship circumvention software known as proxies is blocked. The blog platforms WordPress and TypePad are also blocked. Available in more than 150 languages, WordPress is the world’s most popular blog publishing tool.Partial list of sites that are still inaccessible- www.boxun.com- www.thechinadebate.org/- http://www.tiananmenmother.org/- www.torproject.org/- http://woeser.middle-way.net/- www.tibetpost.net- www.crd-net.org- www.rsf-chinese.orgPartial list of sites that have been unblocked- http://cn.reuters.com/- http://zh.wikipedia.org/- http://www.rfa.org/mandarin/- http://www.voanews.com/chinese/- http://chinese.wsj.com/gb/index.asp- http://www.ftchinese.com/sc/index.jsp- www.rsf.org August 6, 2008 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Cyber-censorship continues for Chinese-language websites More information on unblocked websites: http://www.isaacmao.com/ and http://www.rsf.org/article.php3?id_article=28032Reporters Without Borders’ advice to foreign journalists covering the human rights situation during the Beijing games.To demand the release of the 50 cyber-dissidents and 29 journalists imprisoned in China, go to http://www.rsfbeijing2008.org on 8 August, the day of the Olympic Games opening ceremony, and take part in a Reporters Without Borders cyber-demonstration outside a virtual version of Beijing’s Olympic stadium. News Help by sharing this information Reporters Without Borders condemns the continuing online censorship just two days before the Beijing Olympic Games opening ceremony.“ Nothing or almost nothing has changed for Chinese Internet users as very few Mandarin sites have been unblocked”, the organisation said. center_img to go further Organisation China’s Cyber ​​Censorship Figures Follow the news on China China: Political commentator sentenced to eight months in prison ChinaAsia – Pacific April 27, 2021 Find out more News ChinaAsia – Pacific March 12, 2021 Find out morelast_img read more

Ryanair out of Shannon

first_imgAdvertisement NewsBreaking newsRyanair out of ShannonBy Bernie English – October 15, 2020 529 WhatsApp RYANAIR has announced the expansion of their Manchester service to Shannon Airport, increasing its operations from five to six days a week.THERE has been widespread concern about the announcement by Ryanair that it is to suspend it’s Winter schedule out of Shannon and Cork.The announcement, made on Thursday, will be a severe bow to the two regions and workers are facing huge loss of income.Ryanair is blaming the Government’s restrictions in relation to Covid and travel for a massive fall-off in bookings.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up But the airline boss Michael O’Leary, says they will manage the cutback with unpaid leave rather than job losses.“While we deeply regret these winter schedule cuts they have been forced upon us by Government mismanagement of EU air travel,” said the Ryanair CEO.“Our focus continues to be on maintaining as large a schedule as we can sensibly operate to keep our aircraft, our pilots and our cabin crew current and employed while minimising job losses,” he said.“It is inevitable, given the scale of these cutbacks, that we will be implementing more unpaid leave, and job sharing this winter in those bases where we have agreed reduced working time and pay, but this is a better short term outcome than mass job losses,” he added.Commenting on the announcement by Ryanair of their intention to temporarily close their Shannon Airport base for Winter, Mary Considine, CEO of Shannon Group said: “This is very disappointing news not only for Shannon based Ryanair employees and all our  airport team, but for the whole  region who rely on the services that Ryanair provide. We have done everything in our power to retain the base.“In July, Ryanair resumed services to 16 destinations from Shannon, and as a result of today’s announcement this will see their operation at Shannon reduced to 8 flights serving Stansted, Manchester and Wroclaw for the winter period.“The aviation industry is on its knees with further flight restrictions being imposed in EU countries as the virus rates increase. What we need now is a clear pathway to recovery for aviation. We had hoped that it would start with a harmonised EU traffic light system. While this was endorsed by Ireland, the measures proposed fall short of what the industry requires. This urgently needs to be addressed and supported by a testing regime at airports to restore confidence and get aviation moving safely again.“While we know recovery will take time, it is important that we plan now for the safe restoration of air services and we need to see the full implementation of the Aviation Recovery Taskforce recommendations.  As an Island nation, the aviation industry is vital for Ireland. It needs to be protected and supported and we would hope this will be provided for in the National Economic Plan to be published next month,” said Ms. Considine.Fórsa trade union has said the winter closure of Ryanair bases has struck a devastating blow for crew and pilots at these bases, their families and communities, as well as for other airport staff and the economies of both regions.Ian Mc Donnell, the Fórsa official representing pilots at Ryanair, has expressed disappointment that the airline’s management did not make contact and allow for proper time to engage with the union before making the decision.“The union’s mission since the pandemic struck the country in March has been to worked closely with all aviation employers, including Ryanair, in order to maximise job protection.“Fórsa has called on the Government to intervene to support the industry because Ireland’s connectivity through aviation is crucial to its economy. The industry supports quality jobs throughout the country,” he said.Ashley Connolly, Fórsa’s cabin crew industrial official said: “Despite the publication of the biggest budget spend in the history of the state this week, there were no additional supports for the aviation industry.“Arguably, the absence of any additional supports made these closures inevitable, and it remains unclear if any support is coming. Either way, it’s too late now for the Ryanair pilots and crew in Cork and Shannon,” she said.The Shannon branch of the Irish Hotels Federation has expressed its deep disappointment and concern at the announcement.Dermot Kelly, Chairperson of the Shannon branch said that air access is vital for tourism recovery. “Every effort must be made to ensure the return of all Ryanair routes next spring and to safeguard the existing routes at the airport over the coming months. This is essential to avoid the risk of long-term damage to the tourism industry and the wider economy across Limerick, Clare, Tipperary and Galway,” he said.Mr Kelly cited the Government’s failure to recognise the aviation sector in the budget as a major contributing factor to Ryanair’s decision, together with its failure to implement the recommendations of the its Aviation Recovery Taskforce.“As a gateway to the region, Shannon Airport is a vital component of our tourism infrastructure. On behalf of IHF members across the Mid-West, I appeal to Government to ensure that Shannon Airport is provided with the targeted policy and financial supports required to ensure it continues to provide air access to key international markets.”Reacting to the news Independent TD Michael McNamara has said the Government needs to introduce a system of rapid testing at airports in the short term and must also develop a new State aviation policy to ensure international transit carriers do not fly exclusively into Dublin.“While I understand that Ryanair will continue to operate some scheduled services to and from Shannon over the winter period, the direct impact on 55 Ryanair workers and affiliated businesses across the West of Ireland is profound,” said Deputy McNamara.A statement on behalf of the Department of Transport, said, ”The government recognises that today’s news will be a blow to Ryanair staff, other affected workers and the airports and regions involved. The Government is fully alert to the devastating impact the global pandemic has had on international travel and appreciates and acknowledges the important role of Ryanair and Shannon and Cork Airports to the economies of the Midwest and South regions respectively.The government has agreed to adopt the EU “traffic light” system for international travel and a decision on implementation is expected at a Cabinet meeting next week.The government is committed to the survival and recovery of the sector, including Shannon and Cork Airports, and has already indicated that further Covid Support funding will be made available to safeguard strategic connectivity and resilience into the future.Budget 2021 already includes a provision of €10m to address challenges facing Cork and Shannon Airports.  This is in addition to €6.1m in emergency funding provided to Shannon Airport in June this year to complete a safety and security project.Airports generally as well as the airlines will of course continue will to benefit from the economy-wide support measures that are open to all sectors – notably wage supports and tax deferrals.”“Shannon and those who rely on it for connectivity need the introduction of testing just as many airports across Europe have implemented to enable their aviation sector to function,” he added. “We have a larger aviation sector than most other European countries and we are more reliant on-air connectivity than most other States, yet our Government has introduced policies that have compounded the issues the sector is experiencing. The wider implications of these policies are having a significant impact on our broader economy, for Foreign Direct Investment and for tourism.“Funding received from central Government can never compensate for a lack of a balanced aviation policy, as I have argued for repeatedly in Dáil Eireann since the introduction of restrictions on our aviation sector. Shannon needs a leg-up from the next Government more than it needs a hand-out.“Changes to national aviation policy, which would ensure carriers do not fly exclusively into Dublin, must be matched with the necessary funding. Furthermore, testing protocols should be agreed at all Irish airports to satisfy the requirements of destination airports. Furthermore, Ireland must sign up to the EU-wide traffic light system, which will see regions being marked green, orange, or red depending on their rate of Covid-19 cases.“I, along with a group of 18 other Independents TDs from across the West of Ireland, will meet with the Taoiseach, Minister for Transport and airline representatives to demand these changes,” concluded Deputy McNamara. Twitter Emailcenter_img Linkedin Facebook Print Previous articleOPINION: Who will replace Mike Casey and Richie English for Clare clash?Next articleQUIZ: Name the Limerick Camogie team from their last championship game in 2019 Bernie Englishhttp://www.limerickpost.ieBernie English has been working as a journalist in national and local media for more than thirty years. She worked as a staff journalist with the Irish Press and Evening Press before moving to Clare. She has worked as a freelance for all of the national newspaper titles and a staff journalist in Limerick, helping to launch the Limerick edition of The Evening Echo. Bernie was involved in the launch of The Clare People where she was responsible for business and industry news.last_img read more

Cannabis retail talks begin in Ithaca after legalization

first_img Brian Crandall ITHACA, N.Y.—The only non-voting discussion topic at Wednesday night’s Planning and Economic Development meeting was cannabis retail, amid an agenda that was packed to the gills (full recap published here). Most of us realize the head shops, many of which are downtown, aren’t just selling ‘decorative glasswork,’ but cannabis itself is a different matter. It’s no longer just paraphernalia sales, we’re now talking about the drug itself, which as of last month has been approved for recreational use by adults in the state of New York. It’ll take about 12-18 months to be fully implemented. Within the new New York State law, municipalities may pass local laws and ordinances governing the time, place and manner of licensed adult-use cannabis retail dispensaries. Municipalities may also opt out, but otherwise they will be legally obligated to allow reasonable accommodation for retail by 2023. With projections of $350 million in annual tax revenue and 30,000-60,000 jobs, it’s an economic argument vs. social mores—and Deputy Director of Economic Development Tom Knipe noted that people have been reaching out to the city to ask about opening shops in Ithaca. Brian Crandall reports on housing and development for the Ithaca Voice. He can be reached at [email protected] More by Brian Crandall Your Economy & Development news is made possible with support from: center_img Tagged: andrew cuomo, legalization, marijuana, new york, weed Last fall, in anticipation of the passage of the state law, city staff started working on policy analysis and preliminary recommendations for management of cannabis retail in Ithaca, with the help of two Cornell MBA students. Recommendations from analysis of similar cities and community outreach include updating zoning language to explicitly state where cannabis retail operations are allowed, 500-foot buffers to keep them away from schools and playgrounds, a hard cap on the number allowed in the city, local licensing like a Special Use Permit, entrepreneurship programs for underprivileged groups, and potential restrictions like hours, signage, and no drive-thrus (I didn’t even know this was a thing until I looked it up).For those of us who don’t partake, the expected tax revenue from sales is the main positive—in the range of $162K-$270K annually for the city and a similar amount for the county after five years of shop openings and reaching that local market equilibrium.Knipe did a quick presentation of the city’s cannabis retail study—as well as the ideas above, initial suggestion would allow a maximum 12 cannabis retail shops in the city, with no more than two allowed on the Commons. The question before PEDC was if they wanted city planning staff to move forward with revising zoning to accommodate cannabis retail in certain commercial zones and ask how they felt about the proposed regulations.The board was generally supportive of the regulations as proposed, though Fleming thought it was odd that cannabis wouldn’t be allowed to be sold at bars. That is a state law, according to Knipe. “It definitely makes sense to come forward with some form of guidance,” said councilor and PEDC member Cynthia Brock (D-1st Ward). “I like the idea of a buffer between dispensaries, a ‘saturation limit.’ You don’t want one area with a dense population.” Brock noted that only the east end of the Commons would be eligible due to the nearby location of the New Roots Charter School, though Knipe said the state’s language was vague in the case of a mixed-use building with other tenants. With the favorable reception, the Planning Department will develop the proposal out further for a return to PEDC at a date in the near future. last_img read more

A placename geography for Antarctica

first_imgPlacenames in Antarctica are uniquely complex. Antarctica’s distinctive political environment results in a situation where many national bodies confer names, but until recently there has been no coordination of this activity. The consequence of this is that many features are multiply named. The poor state of topographic mapping of the continent means that the majority of placenames are only defined by point locations, and in many cases the point location is based on old or inadequate mapping. In 1994 an Italian team started work on the Composite Gazetteer of Antarctica (CGA) on behalf of the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR). The first version was presented to SCAR in 1998 and is now the premier source of placename information for Antarctica. This work still continues, and will continue for the foreseeable future as errors are corrected and new content – in particular new descriptions – are provided by national bodies. The present database includes all names currently in official use in Antarctica. Unfortunately, the only geometry provided with the CGA is a point location for each feature, and this is unlikely to change for many reasons. This paper describes how an explicit hierarchical structuring of placenames can provide a geographic structure, and how this structure can assist name selection and placement.last_img read more

A mould system that’s to die for

first_imgThe addition of a co-extrusion system to new or existing single or twin-screw lines can help new product development, according to APV Baker (Peterborough).The company says the system can be used to make unusually shaped baked snacks, complemented by exotic flavours and fillings, such as sweet or savoury creams, fruit pastes or chocolate praline. The system’s essential elements are a pillow crimper, cream-feed system and die. The crim-per handles up to eight lanes of product, while a simultaneous cutting and crimping action helps minimise product handling and transfers, which can contribute to surface damage. Different shapes and flavours can be produced simultaneously for variety packs. The modular cream-feed system can be supplied in sizes from two to eight pumps and offers accurate metering of fillings.APV Baker says that die technology is key to the development of new snacks and that retro-fitting new dies during the mid-lifecycle of an extruder can help develop new and attractive brands. One application is the production of new ‘light’ products, using a special die to inject air.last_img read more

Imelda Staunton to Headline Virginia Woolf?

first_img View Comments Imelda Staunton(Photo: Dave Hogan/Getty Images) The rumors were true and after the recent sad news of Edward Albee’s passing comes the announcement that Imelda Staunton will star alongside Conleth Hill in a new production of the late playwright’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?. Directed by James Macdonald and designed by Tom Pye, the revival will play a limited engagement from February 22, 2017 through May 27. Opening night is set for March 9 at the Harold Pinter Theatre.In the early hours of the morning on the campus of an American college, Martha (Staunton), much to her husband George’s (Hill) displeasure, has invited the new professor Nick and his wife Honey to their home for some after-party drinks. As the alcohol flows and dawn approaches, the young couple are drawn into George and Martha’s toxic games until the evening reaches its climax in a moment of devastating truth-telling.Staunton has been nominated for eleven Olivier Awards, winning four, including for her recent performance as Mama Rose in Gypsy. Other stage credits include Sweeney Todd, Circle, Mirror, Transformation and A Delicate Balance. Film credits include Vera Drake and Dolores Umbridge in the Harry Potter films.Hill (George) is perhaps best known for his role as Lord Varys in HBO’s Game of Thrones. He won an Olivier for The Producers and for Stones In His Pockets in the West End and received Tony nods for Stones In His Pockets on its transfer to Broadway and The Seafarer. His film credits include Salmon Fishing in the Yemen and Whatever Works.Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? won the 1963 Tony Award for Best Play; the 1966 film adaptation was directed by Mike Nichols, and starred Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor. It was last seen on the Main Stem in 2012 led by Tracy Letts and Amy Mortonlast_img read more

France’s Crédit Agricole to stop thermal coal investments in EU, OECD by 2030

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享BusinessGreen:French bank Crédit Agricole has said it will stop investing in thermal coal production in EU and OECD countries by 2030, as it pledged to align its activities with the Paris Agreement in a new strategic growth plan published yesterday.The world’s largest cooperative financial institution, which consists of almost 40 local and regional banks as well as the central Crédit Agricole institute, said it would commit all its entities to a common Paris Agreement-compliant climate strategy to be published in 2020. The strategy will be certified by an independent body and based around the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) as it moves to “strengthen our commitments to financing the energy transition”, the bank said.Crédit Agricole, which manages around €1.8tr assets, will also fully phase out coal from its financing and investment portfolio by 2030 in EU and OECD countries, and will do the same by 2040 in China and by 2050 everywhere else.It promised “no new business relations with companies for which thermal coal accounts for over 25 per cent of their revenues except those that have announced plans to close their thermal coal activities or which intend to announce such plans by 2021”, as well as “no new business relations with companies developing or planning to develop new thermal coal capacity”.In addition, the bank aims to finance a third of renewable energy projects in France, double the size of its green loans portfolio to €13bn by 2022, and “promote clean and responsible investment policies” by incorporating ESG criteria in all funds managed by is asset management arm Amundi, among other new green policies.More: ‘Game changer’: French bank Crédit Agricole to ditch EU coal by 2030 France’s Crédit Agricole to stop thermal coal investments in EU, OECD by 2030last_img read more

May 15, 2003 Notices

first_imgMurray B. Silverstein has been elected to The Florida Bar Board of Governors, and Garrett Biondo has been elected to the Young Lawyers Division board.Silverstein defeated Raleigh W. Greene III in a runoff election 503 to 479 for the Sixth Judicial Circuit’s Seat 2 board race.Biondo outpolled Mario Garcia 229 to 174 in the runoff for the YLD’s 11th Judicial Circuit, Seat 1 contest.Both will be sworn into office at the Bar’s Annual Meeting in Orlando in June.Grier petitions for Bar reinstatement May 15, 2003 Regular News The Young Lawyers Division is now seeking applications to fill a 17th Judicial Circuit seat on its board of governors due to the resignation of Cleveland Ferguson III.The appointment is for a full two-year term ending in June 2005. Eligible members of the division from the 17th Circuit wishing to apply for this seat should submit, (by mail or fax), a letter requesting consideration to Austin Newberry, The Florida Bar, 651 E. Jefferson St., Tallahassee 32399-2300, phone (850) 561-5624, fax (850) 561-5825 by no later than 5p.m., June 19. The YLD board will make the appointment at its June 26 meeting.18th JNC seeks judicial applicants The International Law Section is co-sponsoring a Russian International Legal Symposium in Moscow and St. Petersburg, Russia, July 5-13.The focus of the CLE event will be Russian international business law and coincides with St. Petersburg’s 300th anniversary.From July 5-8 participants will experience the following activities in Moscow:• A one-day symposium focusing on the Russian legal, judicial, and legislative systems, and the impact of significant “western” treaties. This includes interactive workshops.• Collegial meetings with Moscow attorneys, notaries, and judges and a visit of the Supreme Court of Russia.• Visits to the Kremlin and the Duma (Russia’s parliament).• Social/cultural visits, including the Bolshoi Ballet, museums, etc.On July 9, participants board a train for St. Petersburg. The trip will wind its way through the scenic and historic Russian countryside. English speaking guides will accompany the tour.From July 9-13 participants will experience the following activities in St. Petersburg:• A symposium focusing on specific bilateral topics, such as US-Russia investments, immigration, and visas, negotiating contracts, corporate and commercial law; arbitration, collection of judgments and legal ethics.• Collegial meetings with St. Petersburg attorneys, notaries, and judges.• Visits to the St. Petersburg regional courts and notary chambers.• Social and cultural events, including the Kirov Ballet and the Hermitage Museum.On July 12, closing ceremonies will be held at Peter the Great’s Palace.For more information visit www.Russia-Florida-Forum.com or call Angela Froelich at (850) 561-5633.US/Cuba Legal Forum rescheduled Time to update your Bar records The Legal Services Corporation has announced the availability of competitive grant funds to provide civil legal services to eligible clients during calendar year 2004.In accordance with LSC’s multi-year funding policy, grants are available for only specified service areas. A listing of those service areas for each state, and the estimated grant amounts are included in Appendix-A of the Request for Proposals.The RFP and other information pertaining to the LSC grants competition is available at www.ain.lsc.gov.Applicants must file a Notice of Intent to Compete to participate in the competitive grants process.Refer to www.ain.lsc.gov for filing dates and submission requirements. The NIC is available from the RFP. E-mail competition inquiries to Competition(q),lsc.gov.Section plans Russian symposium Applicants are now being sought to fill a judicial vacancy on the Broward County bench due to the retirement of Judge Zebedee W. Wright, effective June 30.Applicants must be registered voters, a member of the Bar in good standing for the preceding five years, and reside in Broward County upon assuming office.Applications may be obtained from William S. Spencer, 17th JNC chair, 500 East Broward Blvd., Suite 1400, Ft. Lauderdale 33394-3076, or from The Florida Bar Web site at www.flabar.org.An original plus nine copies of the completed application (with photographs and attachments) must be received by Spencer no later than May 27, at 5 p.m.Titone applies for Bar readmission The Supreme Court of Florida is in the process of adopting new rules of procedure in response to the United States Supreme Court’s decision in Atkins v. Virginia, 122 S. Ct. 2242 (2002), and the enactment of section 921.137, Florida Statutes (2002). On its own motion, the Supreme Court proposes Florida Rule of Criminal Procedure 3.203 (Defendant’s/Prisoner’s Mental Retardation as a Bar to Execution) and Florida Rule of Appellate Procedure 9.142(c) (Appeal of Determination of Mental Retardation Claim).The court invites all interested persons to comment on the proposals, which are reproduced in full below, as well as online at www.flcourts.org/sct/sctdocs/proposed.html. The court specifically invites comments on the proposals from the Attorney General, the Florida Prosecuting Attorneys Association, the Florida Public Defender Association, the Commission on Capital Cases, the Capital Collateral Regional Counsels, the Appellate Court Rules Committee, and the Criminal Procedure Rules Committee. An original and nine copies of all comments must be filed with the court on or before July 1, as well as a separate request for oral argument if the person filing the comment wishes to participate in oral argument scheduled in this case for Monday, August 25. All comments must be filed in paper format and in WordPerfect 5.1 (or higher) format on a DOS formatted 3-1/2 inch diskette. IN THE SUPREME COURT OF FLORIDA AMENDMENTS TO THE FLORIDA RULES OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE AND THE FLORIDA RULES OF APPELLATE PROCEDURE, CASE NO. SC 03-685. • Proposed rule of criminal procedure for determining mental retardation in “future” cases. RULE 3.203. DEFENDANT’S MENTAL RETARDATION AS A BAR TO EXECUTION Text of section effective for all trials that begin after (date on which this rule is adopted). (a) Scope. This rule applies in all first-degree murder cases in which the state has not formally waived the death penalty on the record. (b) Definition of Mental Retardation. As used in this rule, the term “mental retardation” means significantly subaverage general intellectual functioning existing concurrently with deficits in adaptive behavior and manifested during the period from conception to age 18. The term “significantly subaverage general intellectual functioning,” for the purpose of this rule, means performance that is two or more standard deviations from the mean score on a standardized intelligence test specified in the rules of the Department of Children and Family Services. The term “adaptive behavior,” for the purpose of this rule, means the effectiveness or degree with which an individual meets the standards of personal independence and social responsibility expected of his or her age, cultural group, and community. (c) Notice of Intent to Raise Mental Retardation as Bar to Execution; Time for Filing; Contents. A defendant who intends to raise mental retardation as a bar to the defendant’s execution shall give written notice to the prosecutor not less than 20 days before trial or at such other time as ordered by the court. When the defendant bases mental retardation upon the findings of a mental health expert or experts who has or have tested, evaluated, or examined the defendant, notice shall provide the names and addresses of all mental health experts by whom the defendant expects to establish mental retardation. (d) Motion for Determination of Mental Retardation; Time for Filing After Recommendation of Death. A defendant who has given timely notice under subdivision (c) of this rule may file a motion for determination of mental retardation not more than 10 days after an advisory jury has recommended a death sentence. (e) Notice of Intent to Seek Death Sentence; Motion for Determination of Mental Retardation; Time for Filing After Recommendation of Life. The prosecutor shall notify the defendant, within 10 days after an advisory jury has returned a recommended sentence of life imprisonment, if the state intends to seek a sentence of death. A defendant who has given timely notice under subdivision (c) of this rule may file a motion for determination of mental retardation not more than 10 days after receiving notice that the state intends to seek a death sentence. (f) Motion for Determination of Mental Retardation; Time for Filing After Waiver of Advisory Recommendation. A defendant who has given timely notice under subdivision (c) of this rule and who has waived the right to a penalty phase jury may file a motion for determination of mental retardation no later than 10 days after waiving the right to a penalty phase jury. (g) Appointment of Experts; Time of Examination. Within 30 days of the filing of the motion for determination of mental retardation, the court shall appoint 2 experts in the field of mental retardation. Each expert shall promptly evaluate the defendant and submit to the court and parties a written report of the expert’s findings prior to the final sentencing hearing. Further, where it is the intention of the defendant to present the findings of a mental health expert chosen by the defense who has tested, evaluated, or examined the defendant, the court also shall order that the defendant be examined by a mental health expert chosen by the state. Attorneys for the state and defendant may be present at the examinations conducted under this subdivision. The reports of the mental health experts shall be exchanged prior to the hearing required in section (i) as directed by order of the court. (h) Defendant’s Refusal to Cooperate. If the defendant refuses to be examined by or fully cooperate with the court-appointed experts or the state’s expert, the court may, in its discretion:(1) order the defense to allow the court-appointed experts to review all mental health reports, tests, and evaluations by the defendant’s expert;(2) prohibit the defense experts from testifying concerning any tests, evaluations, or examinations of the defendant regarding the defendant’s mental retardation; or(3) order such relief as the court determines to be appropriate. (i) Hearing on Motion to Determine Mental Retardation. The court shall conduct an evidentiary hearing on the motion. At the hearing, the court shall consider the findings of the court-appointed experts, the findings of any other expert offered by the state or the defense, and all other evidence on the issue of whether the defendant is mentally retarded. If the court finds by clear and convincing evidence that the defendant is mentally retarded as defined in subdivision (b) of this rule, the court shall enter a written order setting forth with specificity the court’s findings in support of its determination. The court shall stay the sentencing proceeding for 30 days from the date of rendition of the order on mental retardation, or if a motion for rehearing is filed, for 30 days following the rendition of the order denying rehearing, to allow the state the opportunity to appeal the order. If the court determines that the defendant has not established mental retardation, the court shall enter a written order setting forth with specificity the court’s findings in support of its determination, and thereafter continue with the sentencing proceeding. (j) Waiver. A claim authorized under this rule is waived if not filed in accord with the time requirements for filing set out in this rule, unless good cause is shown for the failure to comply with the time requirements. (k) Appeal. An appeal may be taken by any adversely affected party. Appeals are to proceed in accord with Florida Rule of Appellate Procedure 9.142(c). • Proposed rule of criminal procedure for determining mental retardation in “nonfinal” cases. RULE 3.203. DEFENDANT’S MENTAL RETARDATION AS A BAR TO EXECUTION Text of section effective in all trials that begin on or before the effective date of this rule but where sentence has not been imposed and affirmed on direct appeal on or before the effective date of this rule. (a) Scope. This rule applies in all first-degree murder cases in which the state has not formally waived the death penalty on the record. The effective date of this rule is ____________. (b) Definition of Mental Retardation. As used in this rule, the term “mental retardation” means significantly subaverage general intellectual functioning existing concurrently with deficits in adaptive behavior and manifested during the period from conception to age 18. The term “significantly subaverage general intellectual functioning,” for the purpose of this rule, means performance that is two or more standard deviations from the mean score on a standardized intelligence test specified in the rules of the Department of Children and Family Services. The term “adaptive behavior,” for the purpose of this rule, means the effectiveness or degree with which an individual meets the standards of personal independence and social responsibility expected of his or her age, cultural group, and community. (c) Notice of Intent to Raise Mental Retardation as Bar to Execution; Contents. A defendant who intends to raise mental retardation as a bar to the defendant’s execution shall give written notice to the prosecutor no later than 30 days after the effective date of this rule. When the defendant bases mental retardation upon the findings of a mental health expert or experts who has or have tested, evaluated, or examined the defendant, notice shall provide the names and addresses of all mental health experts by whom the defendant expects to establish mental retardation. (d) Motion for Determination of Mental Retardation; Time for Filing After Recommendation of Death. A defendant who has given timely notice under subdivision (c) of this rule may file a motion for determination of mental retardation not more than 10 days after an advisory jury has recommended a death sentence, or if an advisory jury has already recommended a death sentence on the effective date of this rule, the motion shall be filed prior to the filing of an appeal or in accord with section (g) if an appeal is pending on the effective date of this rule. (e) Notice of Intent to Seek Death Sentence; Motion for Determination of Mental Retardation; Time for Filing After Recommendation of Life. The prosecutor shall notify the defendant, within 10 days after an advisory jury has returned a recommended sentence of life imprisonment, if the state intends to seek a sentence of death. A defendant who has given timely notice under subdivision (c) of this rule may file a motion for determination of mental retardation not more than10 days after receiving notice that the state intends to seek a death sentence. (f) Motion for Determination of Mental Retardation; Time for Filing After Waiver of Advisory Recommendation. A defendant who has given timely notice under subdivision (c) of this rule and who has waived the right to a penalty phase jury may file a motion for determination of mental retardation no later than 10 days after waiving the right to a penalty phase jury. (g) If Appeal is Pending. If an appeal of a circuit court order imposing a judgment of conviction and sentence of death is pending on the effective date of this rule, the defendant may file a motion to relinquish jurisdiction for a mental retardation determination within 60 days of the effective date of this rule. The motion shall contain a certification by appellate counsel that the motion is made in good faith and on reasonable grounds to believe that the defendant is mentally retarded. (h) Appointment of Experts; Time of Examination. Within 30 days of the filing of the motion for determination of mental retardation in the circuit court, or within 30 days of relinquishment of jurisdiction by the supreme court in a case in which an appeal is pending, the circuit court shall appoint 2 experts in the field of mental retardation. Each expert shall promptly evaluate the defendant and submit to the court and parties a written report of the expert’s findings prior to the final sentencing hearing. Further, where it is the intention of the defendant to present the findings of a mental health expert chosen by the defense who has tested, evaluated, or examined the defendant, the court also shall order that the defendant be examined by a mental health expert chosen by the state. Attorneys for the state and defendant may be present at the examinations conducted under this subdivision. The reports of the mental health experts shall be exchanged prior to the hearing required in section (j) as directed by order of the court. (i) Defendant’s Refusal to Cooperate. If the defendant refuses to be examined by or fully cooperate with the court-appointed experts or the state’s expert, the court may, in its discretion:(1) order the defense to allow the court-appointed experts to review all mental health reports, tests, and evaluations by the defendant’s expert;(2) prohibit the defense experts from testifying concerning any tests, evaluations, or examinations of the defendant regarding the defendant’s mental retardation; or(3) order such relief as the court determines to be appropriate. (j) Hearing on Motion to Determine Mental Retardation. The court shall conduct an evidentiary hearing on the motion. At the hearing, the court shall consider the findings of the court-appointed experts, the findings of any other expert offered by the state or the defense, and all other evidence on the issue of whether the defendant is mentally retarded. If the court finds by clear and convincing evidence that the defendant is mentally retarded as defined in subdivision (b) of this rule, the court shall enter a written order setting forth with specificity the court’s findings in support of its determination. The court shall stay the sentencing proceeding for 30 days from the date of rendition of the order on mental retardation, or if a motion for rehearing is filed, for 30 days following the rendition of the order denying rehearing, to allow the state the opportunity to appeal the order. If the court determines that the defendant has not established mental retardation, the court shall enter a written order setting forth with specificity the court’s findings in support of its determination, and thereafter continue with the sentencing proceeding or, if a sentence of death has already been imposed, the court shall order that jurisdiction be returned to the supreme court. A notice of an order on mental retardation that returns jurisdiction to the supreme court shall be filed in the supreme court with a copy of the order attached. (k) Waiver. A claim authorized under this rule is waived if not filed in accord with the time requirements for filing set out in this rule, unless good cause is shown for the failure to comply with the time requirements. (l) Appeal. An appeal may be taken by any adversely affected party. Appeals are to proceed in accord with Florida Rule of Appellate Procedure 9.142(c). • Proposed rule of criminal procedure for determining mental retardation in “final” cases. RULE 3.203. PRISONER’S MENTAL RETARDATION AS A BAR TO EXECUTION Text of section effective in all cases where a sentence of death was imposed and affirmed on direct appeal on or before the effective date of this rule. (a) Scope. This rule applies in all cases where the prisoner was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to death and the conviction and sentence were affirmed on direct appeal on or before the effective date of this rule which is ___________. (b) Definition of Mental Retardation. As used in this rule, the term “mental retardation” means significantly subaverage general intellectual functioning existing concurrently with deficits in adaptive behavior and manifested during the period from conception to age 18. The term “significantly subaverage general intellectual functioning,” for the purpose of this rule, means performance that is two or more standard deviations from the mean score on a standardized intelligence test specified in the rules of the Department of Children and Family Services. The term “adaptive behavior,” for the purpose of this rule, means the effectiveness or degree with which an individual meets the standards of personal independence and social responsibility expected of his or her age, cultural group, and community. (c) Motion for Determination of Mental Retardation; Conformity with Rule 3.851. A prisoner may file a motion for collateral relief seeking a determination of mental retardation. The motion must be filed in conformity with Florida Rule of Criminal Procedure 3.851. The following conditions apply.(1) A motion for collateral relief seeking a determination of mental retardation made by counsel for the prisoner shall contain a certification by counsel that the motion is made in good faith and on reasonable grounds to believe that the defendant is mentally retarded.(2) If a death-sentenced prisoner has not filed a motion for collateral relief on or before the effective date of this rule, the prisoner shall raise a claim under this rule in an initial rule 3.851 motion.(3) If a death-sentence prisoner has filed a motion for collateral relief and that motion has not been ruled on by the circuit court on or before the effective date of this rule, the prisoner may amend the motion to include a claim under this rule within 60 days of the effective date of this rule. The filing of this motion shall not stay any other proceedings.(4) If a death-sentenced prisoner has filed a motion for collateral relief and that motion has been ruled on by the circuit court and an appeal is pending on or before the effective date of this rule, the prisoner may proceed under subdivision (d) of this rule.(5) If a death-sentenced prisoner has filed a motion for collateral relief and that motion has been ruled on by the circuit court and that ruling is final on or before the effective date of this rule, the prisoner may raise a claim under this rule in a successive rule 3.851 motion filed within 60 days of the effective date of this rule. The circuit court may reduce this time period and expedite the proceedings if the circuit court determines that such action is necessary. (d) Appeal of Motion for Collateral Relief Currently Pending. If an appeal of a circuit court’s ruling on a motion for collateral relief is pending on the effective date of this rule, the prisoner may file a motion to relinquish jurisdiction for a mental retardation determination within 60 days of the effective date of this rule. If the prisoner’s motion complies with subdivision (c) of this rule, the supreme court will relinquish jurisdiction to the circuit court for a mental retardation determination under this rule. Failure to raise such a motion to relinquish under this subdivision will be deemed a waiver of the claim and the prisoner will be barred from raising the claim in a successive motion. The court may reduce the time period for filing such motion if the court determines that such action is necessary. (e) Appointment of Experts; Time of Examination. Within 30 days of the filing of a properly filed motion or amended motion seeking a determination of mental retardation in the circuit court, or within 30 days of relinquishment of jurisdiction by the supreme court in a case in which an appeal is pending, the circuit court shall appoint 2 experts in the field of mental retardation. Each expert shall promptly evaluate the prisoner and submit to the court and parties a written report of the expert’s findings. Further, where it is the intention of the prisoner to present the findings of a mental health expert chosen by the prisoner who has tested, evaluated, or examined the prisoner, the court also shall order that the prisoner be examined by a mental health expert chosen by the state. Attorneys for the state and prisoner may be present at the examinations conducted under this subdivision. The reports of the mental health experts shall be exchanged prior to the hearing required in section (g) as directed by order of the circuit court. (f) Prisoner’s Refusal to Cooperate. If the prisoner refuses to be examined by or fully cooperate with the court-appointed experts or the state’s expert, the court may, in its discretion:(1) order the prisoner to allow the court-appointed experts to review all mental health reports, tests, and evaluations by the prisoner’s expert;(2) prohibit the prisoner’s experts from testifying concerning any tests, evaluations, or examinations of the prisoner regarding the prisoner’s mental retardation;(3) order such relief as the court determines to be appropriate. (g) Hearing on Motion to Determine Mental Retardation; Disposition. The circuit court shall conduct an evidentiary hearing on the motion. At the hearing, the court shall consider the findings of the court-appointed experts, the findings of any other expert offered by the state or the defense, and all other evidence on the issue of whether the prisoner is mentally retarded. If the court finds by clear and convincing evidence that the prisoner is mentally retarded as defined in subdivision (b) of this rule, the court’s written order addressing the motion for collateral relief shall state that the prisoner is not death eligible due to mental retardation. The court’s order denying or granting collateral relief shall conform with the requirements identified in rule 3.851. As explained under rule 3.851, the order shall be considered the final order for purposes of appeal. The clerk of the trial court shall promptly serve upon the parties and the attorney general a copy of the final order, with a certificate of service. Motions for rehearing shall be filed with 15 days of the rendition of the trial court’s order and a response thereto filed with 10 days thereafter. The trial court’s order disposing of the motion for rehearing shall be rendered not later than 15 days thereafter. If the supreme court relinquished jurisdiction, the order shall return the case to the supreme court. A notice of an order on mental retardation that returns jurisdiction to the supreme court shall be filed in the supreme court with a copy of the order attached. (h) Waiver. A claim authorized under this rule is waived if not filed in accord with the time requirements for filing set out in this rule, unless good cause is shown for the failure to comply with the time requirements. (i) Appeal. An appeal may be taken by any adversely affected party. Appeals are to proceed in accord with Florida Rule of Appellate Procedure 9.142(a). (j) Deadline for Filing Claim. A claim under this rule must be filed no more than 60 days after the effective date of this rule. • Proposed addition to Florida Rule of Appellate Procedure 9.142. RULE 9.142. PROCEDURES FOR REVIEW IN DEATH PENALTY CASES (c) Appeal of determination of mental retardation claim.(1) Appeal by Defendant or Prisoner. (A) Commencement. A defendant or prisoner appealing an order determining that the defendant or prisoner has failed to established mental retardation shall appeal at the time the defendant files an appeal of the defendant’s conviction and sentence of death, or at the time prisoner files an appeal of an order denying a motion under Florida Rule of Criminal Procedure 3.851.(B) Briefs. A defendant shall include in the defendant’s brief in the appeal of the conviction and sentence of death, the appeal of the order on mental retardation. A prisoner shall include in the prisoner’s brief in the appeal of the order denying a rule 3.851 motion, the appeal of the order on mental retardation.(2) Appeal by State. (A) Commencement. The state may appeal to the appropriate district court an order determining that the defendant or prisoner is mentally retarded within 30 days of the order on mental retardation. In the event that a motion for rehearing of the order on mental retardation is filed by the state, the 30 days shall commence to run from the rendition of the order denying the rehearing.(B) Stay. During the pendency of the state’s appeal, further proceedings in the circuit court are stayed.11th JNC seeks judicial applicants Joseph John Titone of Margate has submitted an application with the Florida Board of Bar Examiners for readmission to The Florida Bar.Titone was disbarred pursuant to a June 4, 1992, Supreme Court order due to his felony arrest for perjury in an official proceeding and unlawful compensation.The Florida Board of Bar Examiners will conduct a public hearing on Titone’s application for readmission. All members of the Bar are invited to write to the board regarding their knowledge of Titone, particularly in relation to his character and fitness for readmission.If you wish to be notified of the time and place of the hearing, submit a written request to the executive director at the Florida Board of Bar Examiners, 1891 Eider Court, Tallahassee 32399-1750.Evans petitions for Bar reinstatement The 11th Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission is now accepting applications to fill a Dade County court vacancy, created by the resignation of Judge A. Leo Adderly.Applicants must be registered voters, member of the Bar in good standing for the preceding five years, and live in the territorial jurisdiction of the court.Applications are available from the Bar’s Web site at www.flabar.org or from Pamela I. Perry, JNC Chair, 201 South Biscayne Blvd., Suite 1100, Miami 33131, phone (305) 373-1000. An original and nine copies of the application must be returned to Perry by 5 p.m. May 29.LSC announces availability of grants Moved? Got a new phone number or e-mail address?Now would be a good time to take a few moments to update your Bar member records.Occasionally, the Bar president or the Florida Supreme Court’s chief justice sends out important e-mail messages to the membership. The Florida Bar Journal also uses the membership records on file with the Bar for the annual September directory.To review your current record, log on to www.flabar.org and use the attorney search feature under the “What’s New” heading near the top of the page. If your records need to be updated, click on the Membership Records Change of Address Form, fill it out and electronically transmit it directly to the Bar Membership Records Department.Members also may send fax updates (850) 561-1141 or call the Bar toll-free at (800) 342-8060, ext. 5832 to update the records.The deadline to change your membership record for publication in the 2003 directory is June 30.Silverstein elected to the Board of Governors The 18th Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission is now accepting applications to fill a seat on the circuit bench, created by the retirement of Judge Thomas G. Freeman.Applicants must be registered voters, members of the Bar in good standing for the preceding five years, and live in the territorial jurisdiction of the court. Applications may be obtained from the JNC’s Web site at www.18jnc.com and must be returned to Sidney L. Vihlen III, JNC Chair, 1173 Spring Centre South Blvd., Suite C, Altamonte Springs 32714, telephone (407) 786-2200 no later than 5 p.m. May 30. New Rules of Criminal and Appellate Procedure The Business Torts Committee of the Litigation Section of the ABA is inviting the members of The Florida Bar to learn more about the committee.“Members of the Business Torts Committee make great contacts, put on cutting edge CLE programs and publish and receive the excellent Business Torts Journal, among other benefits of membership,” said Tampa’s Sean Johnson, the group’s Florida membership coordinator. “Every Litigation Section member can join three committees at no extra charge.”For more information visit the ABA Web site at www.abanet.org or contact Johnson at P.O. Box 1102, Tampa 33601; fax (813) 229-6553; or e-mail at [email protected] trenam.com. Pursuant to Rule 3-7.10, Robert Edwin Grier has petitioned the Supreme Court of Florida for Bar reinstatement.Pursuant to a December 23, 1993, order from the Supreme Court, Grier was suspended from practice of law for three years, effective retroactively to December 13, 1991, for engaging in multiple acts of misconduct. Grier failed to adequately represent a client in a foreclosure action, improperly retained trust funds as payment of his legal fees, failed to forward Medicare payments to a medical services provider for services rendered a ward in a guardianship where Grier was the court- appointed guardian, incompetently handled an IRS matter, failed to maintain adequate communications with clients, failed to account for fees paid, assisted his wife in attempting to make a fraudulent claim for injuries, neglected legal matters, failed to refund unearned legal fees, failed to appear at hearings on behalf of a client, misappropriated trust funds, made misrepresentations to clients, failed to advise clients of a change in his office address and telephone number, withdrew from a client’s case without taking steps to protect the client’s interests, failed to advise a client of the dismissal of the case, and failed to advise a client that he could not continue handling the case due to his serious illness.Any persons having knowledge bearing upon Grier’s fitness or qualifications to resume the practice of law should contact: Frances R. Brown-Lewis, Bar Counsel, The Florida Bar, 1200 Edgewater Drive, Orlando 32804-6314, phone (407) 425-5424.17th JNC seeks judicial applicants May 15, 2003 Notices Pursuant to Rule 3-7.10, William Earl Evans, Jr., has petitioned the Florida Supreme Court for Bar reinstatement.Evans was suspended from the practice of law for three years, effective May 2, 1997, for conspiracy to possess and distribute methamphetamine, a controlled substance.Any persons having knowledge bearing upon Evans’ fitness or qualifications to resume the practice of law should contact JoAnn Marie Stalcup, The Florida Bar, 1200 Edgewater Drive, Orlando 32804-6314, telephone (407) 425-5424.YLD seat available The US/Cuba Legal Forum, Inc., and La Unión Nacional de Juristas de Cuba have rescheduled their third annual conference aimed at promoting discussions of different views, exchanges of experience and necessary reflections on the state of US/Cuba legal relations. It will now be held from July 28 to July 31 in Havana, Cuba.The conference is open to attorneys, law students, and legal professionals.For more information, contact the US/Cuba Legal Forum at [email protected] yahoo.com, or write to US/Cuba Legal Forum, 235 S.W. LeJeune Road, 2nd Floor, Miami 33134 or call (305) 303-0660.Business torts panel seeks memberslast_img read more

On compliance: Prevent ERISA problems

first_img ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr An audit—or penalties—could result if your CU doesn’t properly handle summary plan descriptions and other key documents.by: Ken Spencer, SPHR, MHRMWith the introduction of the Affordable Care Act, summary plan description requirements from the Employee Retirement Income Security Act are receiving new attention and increased enforcement likely to ensure compliance with ACA—and potentially find revenue to fund it through fines and penalties.The rules around summary plan descriptions apply to virtually all organizations, except governmental entities and churches, regardless of the number of employees or how many employees participate. And they are just one piece of what ERISA requires.It is worthwhile for credit unions to have compliant SPDs, as well as to comply with the rest of the act, because the Department of Labor’s Employee Benefits Services Administration routinely conducts audits of group health benefit plans. Companies selected for Department of Labor audits receive letters containing a list of documents the department would like to review, often information from three to six years back. continue reading »last_img read more