|The State Bar fee bill to be introduced
in the coming legislative session may include reforms never considered during last year's
stalemate as its sponsors try to craft a measure designed to address a wide array of
Among the possible changes are a dues structure which might take into account
members' ability to pay and reforms of the continuing education program.
Sen. Adam Schiff, D-Pasadena, who will carry the measure in the Senate, said he views
the fee bill as an opportunity to reform the bar and address questions that were not part
of the discussions among lawmakers last year but that would benefit both consumers and
"I told the bar we are going to start with a tabula rasa and feel free to examine
and propose changes that go beyond what was suggested last year," Schiff said.
"This is a chance to react to criticism but also to go
|Four months ago, Peter Keane had no inkling he would soon leave his job
of 20 years, moving from the reality of the trenches to the more rarified atmosphere of a
But as the new dean of Golden Gate University law school, Keane adds another
category to his eclectic resume, which already includes criminal defense attorney, State
Bar board member, anti-bar activist and media legal anayst.
"It combines so many things I've been doing," Keane says, explaining that he
has taught for years at three different law schools and has administered a staff of 70
attorneys as chief assistant public defender in San Francisco. "Administering a
faculty shouldn't be too awful," he chuckled.
Having his affiliation
appear on the television screen, whether it's "Larry King Live," "Burden of
Proof" or a local newscast, also serves as effective, and free, marketing for the
800-student law school. "They see it as a big plus," Keane said. "It gives
the place a visibility you couldn't buy in terms of PR."
In a time of declining numbers of law school applicants, his first order of business is
to bolster the number of students to keep the school economically viable "without
taking people you should not admit just to get the tuition."
Because of the presence of the so-called "multi-media gulch" in San
Francisco, Keane wants to carve out an intellectual property niche, as well as improve the
school's already successful LLM program in international law. He also hopes to raise
Golden Gate's bar exam pass rate