JBA gets inside look at Constitution Revision Commission

“It’s about to be crunch time,” says Hank Coxe, a presenter at the group’s luncheon Wednesday.

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The Florida Constitution Revision Commission is nearing the end of its yearlong process that will lead to proposed amendments to the state’s governing document being placed on the November ballot.

The commission is scheduled to begin its final phase of deliberation on about 40 proposals in mid-March and must submit its recommended amendments by May 10 to the secretary of state.

“It’s about to be crunch time,” said Hank Coxe, partner at The Bedell Firm and chair of the commission’s Ethics & Elections Committee.

He’ll be a presenter when The Jacksonville Bar Association meets at noon Wednesday at the Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront.

Hank Coxe
Hank Coxe

Coxe said the discussion will include an inside look at how the commission has gathered and then considered suggestions from the public as well as its members and a preview of some of the proposed amendments likely to make it on the ballot.

Joining Coxe for the presentation will be Martha Walters Barnett, retired senior partner at Holland & Knight.

She’s a past president of the American Bar Association (2000-01) and served on the Florida Constitution Revision Commission when it convened in 1997-98.

Coxe said Barnett will provide insight as to how the current deliberations have differed from 20 years ago, when the commission last met.

Also on the panel will be Mary Adkins, a professor at the University of Florida Levin College of Law.

She researched the history of the 1968 Florida Constitution and is the author of “Making Modern Florida: How the Spirit of Reform Shaped a New Constitution.”

Coxe said she’ll explain how the 37 members of the commission were selected by the governor, Senate president, speaker of the House and chief justice of the state Supreme Court.

Also in attendance will be Jeff Woodburn, executive director of the commission, and some of Coxe’s fellow commissioners.

Visit jaxbar.org to register.

Marshall Dennehey adds three attorneys in Jacksonville office

Marshall Dennehey Warner Coleman & Goggin expanded its workers’ compensation department into the Florida market with attorneys Heather Byrer Carbone, shareholder; Linda Wagner Farrell, shareholder; and associate Kelly Scifres.

They will lead the statewide practice from the firm’s Jacksonville office.

Carbone will serve as practice group leader with 17 years of experience in workers’ compensation defense and employment law. She is a graduate of Florida State University and Indiana University School of Law.

Farrell has more than 15 years of experience representing insurance carriers, third-party administrators and self-insured employers in all aspects of workers’ compensation defense. She is a graduate of the University of North Florida and Florida Coastal School of Law.

Scifres has five years of workers’ compensation experience defending insured and uninsured employers. She also defends businesses audited by the state for workers’ compensation coverage compliance and matters related to stop-work orders and penalty assessments. Scifres is a graduate of the University of Central Florida and Florida Coastal School of Law.

Marshall Dennehey’s workers’ compensation department has represented employers, insurance carriers and third party administrators in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware for more than 30 years. The firm opened its Jacksonville office in 2004.

Four law clerks in the spotlight on Thursday

Four career law clerks to U.S. Circuit, District and Magistrate judges will talk about federal practice and professional conduct at noon Thursday when the Jacksonville chapter of the Federal Bar Association presents “What the Law Clerks Wish You Knew.”

The program and lunch will be in the jury assembly room at the Bryan Simpson U.S. Courthouse Downtown at 300 N. Hogan St.

In addition, U.S. District Judge Timothy Corrigan will make a presentation, on behalf of the lawyers and judges of the Middle District, to a civic organization that has donated a display of historic documents to the courthouse.

To attend, RSVP to Maria Daniels at [email protected] or visit the “Events” tab at jacksonvillefederalbarassociation.org to reserve a seat.