Archive for the ‘Governor’ Category

NY: The Moreland Commission to Investigate Public Corruption

September 7, 2013

On July 2, 2013, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo appointed the “Commission to Investigate Public Corruption” under the Moreland Act and Executive Law Section 63(8) to probe systemic corruption and the appearance of such corruption in state government, political campaigns and elections in New York State.

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman will appoint the members of the Commission as Deputy Attorneys General giving the Commission broad investigative authority to probe matters that “involve public peace, public safety and public justice”.

The Commission will have the power to issue subpoenas and examine witnesses under oath.  They will be tasked with among things, reviewing the adequacy of existing state laws, regulations and procedures involving unethical and unlawful misconduct by public officials and the electoral process and campaign finance laws.  They will also examine whether existing laws and regulations have been fairly and vigorously enforced and what changes must be made to such enforcement.  The Commission is directed to make recommendations to toughen and improve existing laws and procedures.

Note: 

The Commission will hold hearings in September:
* Tuesday, September 17 in lower Manhattan,
* Wednesday, September 18 in Buffalo,
* Tuesday, September 24 in Albany

The hearings will begin at 6:00 p.m.

Source:
The Moreland Commission to Investigate Public Corruption

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Brown signs bill to protect rights of conservatees

August 21, 2013

Gov. Brown signed a bill into law Monday protecting the rights of people under a conservatorship. That’s when a judge appoints someone to handle the affairs of a person due to old age or physical limitations.
An ABC7 News I-Team investigation uncovered cases in which the Santa Clara County public guardian was restricting access to conservatees.

The law clarifies a conservatee’s right to have visitors, phone calls, and personal mail.

Full Article and Source:
Brown signs bill to protect rights of conservatees

VT Governor Peter Shumlin Expected to Sign Watered-Down Elder Abuse Bill

May 29, 2013

Gov. Peter Shumlin vetoed one bill last year. It was an innocuous-sounding piece of legislation that would have required the Agency of Human Services (AHS) to send monthly updates to the Legislature on how it screens and responds to reports of elder abuse.

Lawmakers gave it another go this session — both the House and Senate passed a similar bill — and this time around, Shumlin is unlikely to strike it down. That’s because lawmakers stripped a number of the more onerous reporting requirements in order to secure the administration’s support.

The bill deals with the Adult Protective Services (APS) division of the Department of Aging and Independent Living (DAIL). APS, which investigates reports of elder abuse, has been plagued with problems in recent years. Although DAIL dutifully chipped away at a backlog of hundreds of unaddressed cases,  advocates aren’t confident that the department has gotten its act together.

Full Article and Source:
Shumlin Explected to Sign Watered-Down Elder Abuse Bill

TN Governor, Bill Haslam Approves New Conservatorship Law

May 24, 2013

Gov. Bill Haslam has signed into law a measure making the first major revisions in more than a decade to the state law governing the process of placing state residents under the control of a court-appointed conservator.

The new statute, which will take effect July 1, was the product of a series of hearings held across the state by the Tennessee Bar Association. It sets out for the first time uniform procedures for placing a person in a conservatorship on an emergency basis.

“The intent of this law is to clarify the process, to make sure people aren’t being taken advantage of,” said Rep. Andrew Farmer, the House sponsor of the measure.

Under the new law, a person being placed in a conservatorship in an emergency situation must be informed of the proceedings within 48 hours and a hearing must be held within five days.

The judge also will be required to certify that absent the conservatorship, the person would be likely to suffer substantial harm.

Testimony at the bar association hearings last year, including a session in Nashville, showed the emergency process varied from courtroom to courtroom across the state. Several witnesses, including Jewell Tinnon of Nashville, said their rights and possessions had been taken away without notice or justification and they questioned the need for emergency action.

Tinnon’s story was told in a special report by the Tennessean last year. Her house, car, and all of her personal possessions were stripped away while she was in a conservatorship initiated by two relatives who she said she hadn’t seen in years. Tinnon now lives in public housing.

Under the new law, a judge will be required to specify exactly what rights are being taken away and what rights the ward will retain. The law mandates that the restrictions be as limited as possible.

Under a last-minute amendment, specific provisions were added to clarify the procedure for a health care provider to follow in placing a patient in a conservatorship on a temporary basis. The change was sought by hospitals.

Full Article and Source:
Haslam Approves New Conservatorhsip Law

Georgia Governor Signs Elder Abuse Bill

May 7, 2013

Governor Nathan Deal made a stop in Moultrie to sign a bill for elder abuse.
The Elder Abuse Act passed the House with a unanimous vote. During his stop in southwest Georgia to sign the bill, Governor Deal stated this shows how much lawmakers are dedicated to protecting those who can’t protect themselves.

“I think it indicates an acknowledgement on the part of the general assembly that they probably have heard of examples of elder abuse in their particular parts of the state and they came together and said this is something that really does need to be done,” said Governor Nathan Deal, (R)-Georgia.

Full Article and Source:
Governor Nathan Deal Signs Elder Abuse Bill

TN Conservatorship Bill Amendment Regarding Emergency Hearings and Also Hospitals Goes to Governor

April 22, 2013

A rewrite of the state law governing conservatorships setting new first time standards for emergency cases has been approved by the Tennessee General Assembly and will now goes to Gov. Bill Haslam.

The measure was approved on a 32-0 vote Friday by the state Senate after that body agreed to a last minute amendment sought by hospitals and previously approved by the House. There was no debate.

The overall proposal was offered earlier this year by the Tennessee Bar Association following a series of public hearings held across the state.

“We’re very pleased to have had an opportunity to take a careful look at the law,” said Allan Ramsaur of the bar association following the Senate vote. It should bring some clarity to the way the process works.”

The change in the law followed controversy surrounding several conservatorship cases in the Nashville area in which those placed in a conservatorship charged that they were not given adequate notice and that all their possessions were taken away in the process.

Under the bill voted Friday, a person being placed in a conservatorship on an emergency basis would have to be informed of the action within 48 hours and a hearing would have to be held in five days.

The bar association found in its hearings that without a statewide standard, courts across the state were using varying methods to handle emergency cases.

The last minute amendment sets up a special process for cases in which a hospital patient can be placed in a temporary conservatorship on an expedited basis in cases where the hospital stated the patient needed to be transferred to a lower level of care but lacked the capacity to make his or her own health decisions.

In those cases the hospital could petition the court for the appointment of a temporary conservator with the authority to approve a transfer to a nursing home or other health facility.

Officials of the Vanderbilt Medical Center said the provision would enable them to free up a scarce acute care bed for another patient needing that level of care.

A second amendment approved by the House and Senate clarifies that the new law will only apply to cases filed after July 1 of this year.

Source:
Conservatorship Abuse Law Goes to Haslam
See Also:
TN Lawmakers Amend Conservatorship Bill After Concern From Hospitals

Governor Christie Ignores Complaints against Judge McVeigh

March 18, 2013

THE FAMILY RESOLUTION CENTER, LLC
THE FAMILY RESOLUTION CENTER.COM

OFFICE OF THE GOVERNOR
POB 001
TRENTON, NEW JERSEY 08625

Dear Governor Christie,

I am writing to you once again about a New Jersey Judge, Margaret Mary McVeigh, JSC, who serves as a Chancery court Judge. 71 Hamilton St., Paterson, New Jersey.

I have written to the Judicial Review Division of the court, Chief Judge Volkert in Patterson and Chief Judge Rabner in Trenton, New Jersey. I have also published rather extensively and provided specific details related to the pattern of corruption via the plundering of estates of litigants brought to probate by a consistent series of lawyers – Joseph Mecca, Esq., lawyers from the Hunziker firm in Wayne, New Jersey and others, named in my published articles.

The same protocol is consistently employed. An estate brought to probate, viewed by the Judge and the appointed trustees of the estate are removed, replaced by the same cast of characters drafted by the judge, family members are removed from contact with the recipient of an estate via restraining order. All key participants/family members who have been named as recipients of the estate are removed, replaced by McVeigh appointees who are then paid by the estate until the estate is totally denuded. The individual for whom the estate was meant to support and protect is invariably left homeless, penniless, sent to a nursing home or group home in the case of a physically impaired youth. The original estate owner is always declared to be mentally incompetent by the court appointed medical minions – or the judge herself – and the subject’s physicians are removed from ministering to their patient who is then isolated from all sources of chosen support, left to the voracious appetites of the court and court appointed minions who devour the proceeds of the estate, time and time again.

Full Article & Source:
Governor Christie Ignores Complaints against Judge McVeigh

Missouri Legislation Strengthens Senior Protections

July 20, 2012

Gov. Jay Nixon signed legislation Wednesday intended to strengthen protections for elderly and disabled Missourians against financial exploitation.

Missouri already has a law that makes it a crime to take financial advantage of an elderly or disabled person through deception, intimidation or force. However, officials say it has been difficult for prosecutors to prove cases of financial exploitation when the perpetrator has guardianship or power of attorney.

Under the newly approved law, it now will be a crime to use “undue influence” to exploit someone’s “vulnerable state of mind, neediness, pain or agony.” That specifically could be applied to instances of improper or fraudulent use of power of attorney, guardianship, conservatorship or other fiduciary authority.

Full Article and Source:
Missouri Legislation Strengthens Senior Protections

MI Governor Signs Senior Protection Legislation

June 23, 2012

Gov. Rick Snyder signed a 10-bill package to protect Michigan’s senior citizens and vulnerable adults. The measures encourage the reporting of elder abuse and strengthen penalties for those who are convicted.

“The abuse of seniors and vulnerable adults is one of the fastest growing crimes in our state, and law enforcement agencies will now have better tools to help protect potential victims from financial and physical abuses,” Snyder said.

The governor called for the legislation’s passage in his special messages on health and wellness and public safety.

Sen. Tonya Schuitmaker sponsored Senate Bills 461, 464 and 466 in the package.

Senate Bill 461 prevents a person from benefiting from the estate of a deceased person if the person who is to receive benefits has been convicted of abuse, neglect, or exploitation. SB 464 increases coordination between state and local authorities to expedite abuse investigations. And SB 466 establishes a public notification system for missing seniors, similar to the Amber Alert for missing children, called the Mozelle Senior or Vulnerable Adult Medical Alert Act. The measures are now Public Acts 173, 175, and 176 of 2012.

Other bills in the package are:

SB 454, sponsored by Sen. Mike Nofs, allows vulnerable adult victims to give court testimony via closed-circuit television or prerecorded video. It is now Public Act 170 of 2012.

SB 455, sponsored by Sen. Tory Rocca, provides sentencing guidelines to enhanced punishment for criminals who fraudulently obtain a senior’s signature. It is now Public Act 169 of 2012.

SB 457, sponsored by Sen. Patrick Colbeck, allows county medical examiners to establish death review teams to investigate the unexpected death of a vulnerable adult under suspicious circumstances. It is now Public Act 171 of 2012.

SB 459, sponsored by Sen. Judy Emmons, increases the penalties for the financial exploitation of vulnerable adults and strengthens the punishment for criminals who fraudulently obtain a senior’s signature. It is now Public Act 172 of 2012.

SB 462, sponsored by Sen. Steve Bieda, establishes reporting requirements for employees of long-term care facilities when they suspect or have knowledge of abuse and neglect at a facility. It is now Public Act 174 of 2012.

SB 465, sponsored by Sen. Dave Hildenbrand, strengthens penalties for criminals who embezzle from seniors. It is now Public Act 168 of 2012.

SB 468, sponsored by Sen. Goeff Hansen, prohibits a court magistrate from refusing complaints of abuse against vulnerable adults that are filed by someone other than the alleged victim. It is now Public Act 177 of 2012.

Full Article and Source:
Snyder Signs Senior Protection Legislation

Justice Center for the Protection of People With Special Needs

June 3, 2012

For too long our state has been inconsistent in how it addressed incidents of abuse against people with special needs, lacking any real consistent standards for tracking and investigating complaints or punishing those who commit abuse and neglect.

Knowing that it is imperative that state government meet its obligation to protect and serve all New Yorkers, Governor Cuomo has proposed legislation to create the Justice Center for the Protection of People with Special Needs which will give New York State the strongest standards and practices in the nation for protecting people with special needs and disabilities.

The Justice Center for the Protection of People with Special Needs will transform how our state protects over one million New Yorkers under the care or jurisdiction of six state agencies.

Source:
Justice Center for the Protection of People With Special Needs