The State Bars fee bill, extending for one
year the bars authority to collect $395 from most active lawyers as the annual fee
for 2001, was signed by Gov. Gray Davis July 7.
SB 1367, authored by Sen. Adam Schiff, D-Pasadena, and Assembly
Speaker Robert Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, enables the bar to continue its rebuilding efforts
after the near shutdown of operations in 1998.
The measure continues the scaling option for attorneys who earn less
than $40,000 (a 25 percent discount) or under $25,000 (a 50 percent cut) annually. It also
permits a $5 lobbying deduction for lawyers who object to some portion of the bars
This legislation will enable the State Bar to recruit and
retain new employees to rebuild and bolster its disciplinary and consumer protection
programs, building a better organization to serve lawyers and consumers alike,
SB 1367 passed the Assembly on a bipartisan 63-7 vote and had earlier
passed the Senate by a vote of 23-12.
The measure is double-joined to SB 1420 by Sen. John Burton, D-San
Francisco, meaning it will become effective only if SB 1420 also becomes law. The Burton
measure would require the bar to update a workload standards study first conducted in 1991
and make technical changes to the law regarding the operations of the State Bar Court. At
press time, SB 1420 was on the Senate floor, awaiting concurrence in Assembly amendments.
The bill will be brought up after the legislature returns from its summer recess.