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Thursday, May 13, 2010

More Manipulation of New York State 'Justice'

New 'Hybrid' Judges Split Time to Attack Burgeoning Caseloads
The New York Law Journal by Daniel Wise - May 13, 2010

Seeking flexibility to deal with burgeoning foreclosure and consumer debt caseloads, court administrators have promoted 13 New York City Civil Court judges to Acting Supreme Court justices. The new "hybrid" judges—four in Manhattan, three each in Brooklyn and Queens, two in the Bronx and one on Staten Island—are splitting time between the courts. They are being paid at the Supreme Court rate, $136,700, compared to $125,600 for Civil Court, whether or not they are handling Supreme or Civil court cases. "We designed this to balance the needs of the Supreme and Civil courts," said Justice Fern Fisher, the deputy administrative judge for New York City courts. "It splits the baby to give both courts assistance." Two of the hybrid judges were appointed at the beginning of the year, two in February and the remaining nine last month. They are in addition to 13 full-time acting Supreme Court justices who were appointed effective Jan. 1.

David Bookstaver, a court system spokesman, said the number of appointments this year have been "unusually high" because "we were hit by a number of retirements last year." The 26 lower court judges elevated to Supreme Court status since the first of the year make up nearly 18 percent of the 146 acting Supreme Court justices currently designated in New York City. In the previous five years, the most acting Supreme Court justices appointed in any one year was 11 in 2009, and the least was five appointed in 2006. The hybrid justices, while continuing their pre-existing Civil Court duties, have been assigned to a number of different Supreme Court tasks, including handling mandatory settlement conferences in foreclosure cases, presiding over consumer credit lawsuits where more than $25,000—the Supreme Court jurisdictional threshold—is at stake and handling Article 78 proceedings and summary jury trials. Throughout New York City, the number of annual mortgage foreclosure filings in Supreme Court has nearly tripled since 2005, to 15,111 last year from 5,158. Queens had the most filings in 2009 at 5,784; followed by Brooklyn, 5,228; the Bronx, 1,903; Staten Island, 1,634; and Manhattan, 562. The Civil Court also is stretched, with citywide filings, excluding housing matters, reaching 566,000 in 2009 and projected to rise to 700,000, this year. The 26 justices were selected based on their performance and seniority, Justice Fisher said. Maura Vann, law secretary to Judge Charles S. Lopresto, the supervising judge of the Queens Civil Court, said the hybrid approach helps the Supreme Court while "allowing us to continue to have the benefit of our most experienced judges and not lose them entirely."

Different Approaches

The hybrid justices are being deployed differently depending on the needs of each borough. For instance, the two Bronx judges are maintaining the same duties while weaving mortgage foreclosures and summary jury trials into their workload. The foreclosures are cases that are not resolved at the statutorily mandated settlement conferences. Only about 10 percent to 12 percent of the conferences result in settlements, said Justice Barry Salman, the Bronx administrative judge. Supreme Court Justice Laura Douglas, who is the supervising judge of the Civil Court in the Bronx, said that the two new justices—Nelida Malave-Gonzalez and Fernando Tapia — have "the exact same case loads they had previously but adjustments may be made in the future." In Manhattan, Administrative Judge Sherry Klein Heitler said all post-conference foreclosures and Supreme Court consumer debt cases are being sent to Civil Court, where they will be handled by the four hybrid acting justices, Kibbie Payne, Manuel Mendez, Peter Moutlon and Anil Singh. Justice Heitler said the four justices' Civil Court schedules will not be adjusted until there is more experience with their Supreme Court caseloads. The Supreme Court has about 900 foreclosure cases pending, she said, but it is not possible to break out the number of contract matters seeking more than $25,000 in damages that are consumer debt actions. Two of the three hybrid justices in Queens, Anna Culley and Joseph Esposito, are traveling roughly two miles to the Supreme Court one afternoon a week to handle foreclosure settlement conferences, said Tracy Catapano, law clerk to Queens Administrative Judge Jeremy S. Weinstein. The third Queens justice, Timothy Dufficy, will remain in Civil Court but handle Article 78 proceedings involving challenges to rent rulings made by the state Division of Housing and Community Renewal.

The three Brooklyn justices are integrating foreclosure conferences into their Civil Court schedules, said Brooklyn Administrative Judge Sylvia O. Hines-Radix. The three are Acting Justices Johnny Lee Baynes, Noach Dear and Wavny Toussaint. On Staten Island, Acting Justice Mary Kim Dollard is spending about half her time on Supreme Court matters that are being reassigned to her, said Administrative Judge Philip G. Minardo. Of the 13 judges promoted to full-time acting status, five have been assigned to the Supreme Court in the Bronx, four to Manhattan, three to Brooklyn and one to Queens. The Manhattan justices, all of whom have been assigned to hear civil cases in Supreme Court, are Barbara Jaffe, Joan Kenney, Saliann Scarpulla and George Silver. In the Bronx, Justice Diane Lebedeff has been assigned to hear civil cases, and Justices Julia Rodriguez, Doris Gonzalez, Ruth Smith and Alvin Yearwood are handling criminal cases.In Brooklyn, Justices Loren Baily-Schiffman, Kathy King and Kenneth Sherman all are hearing civil matters. In Queens, Justice William Harrington is handling criminal cases. Daniel Wise can be reached at


more disgusted said...

Aren't we supposed to elect judges in New York? I'm sure some of these judges are good, but the fact that dirty politicians may have a hand in who has been picked leaves me with a knot in my stomach. (Did all the appointees get the OK from Shelly Silver?)

Anonymous said...

Judges would have more time if they weren't worried about the backdoor corrupt games to influenced their administration of the law. And if their time wasn't being wasted there would be less of a backlog of cases. Are you listening 'judge lippman'?

Anonymous said...

what backdoor agreement, Shelly & the Senators have decided they will make the decisions in our courts, for the people and lawyers they want to have justice
All else, catch me if you can committing the Federal Felonies!
As for all the agencies put in place to help the targets, we paid them off too!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

what backdoor agreement, Shelly & the Senators have decided they will make the decisions in our courts, for the people and lawyers they want to have justice
All else, catch me if you can committing the Federal Felonies!
As for all the agencies put in place to help the targets, we paid them off too!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

handling Article 78 proceedings and summary jury trials.

could someone explain the difference between those who set up the Summary Jury Trials and Article 78!

T Finnan said...

Trust Court Administration? I have a letter from Lippman's office saying Court Administration has no control or supervision of Acting Supreme Court Judges and their reappointment each year.
Lippman trusts them all, doesn't check and reappoints the known crooks.
This reform is being done in conjunction with a corresponding reorganization of Hell.

Anonymous said...

someone should investigate State Trooper William Fish and friends, nothing but a bunch of thugs who do not pass the pig test!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

please make sure William Fish continues to attend the Coffee Clutching Pig Meetings(psychotics in gangs) also known as the Pendleton Whores and Insurance Cheats Meetings.........
held regularly at a Tim Horton near you!

Anonymous said...

or is it Tim Whorton's

Anonymous said...

or is it Tim Whorton's

Anonymous said...

These articles are great but in the same time it takes to post such an article, the common courtesy of returning John Turner's phone call or email who has been patiently relying and waiting on the blog administrator to get back to him could have occurred already.

After all, Mr. Turner did serve the United States thru the Navy and Coast Guard for 20 yrs Honorable Discharge. One would reasonably believe he could get at least a "hello and keep waiting for something to happen" call or email in over 6 months despite being specifically informed there was definite follow up to occur which has not been followed up in what, maybe a year now?

6 months or more of disregard despite alot of patience would seem to be counter to the purpose of the blog of restoring the integrity since Mr. Turner has been left in a compromised position to know how to follow up on his rights.

Meanwhile, no changes have occurred, appointments to these Acting offices and other offices continues despite supposed real changes to have come at the CJC and 4 App Divs, no new hearings, Turner's Constitutional family rights wrongfully severed during the exact timeframe that he patiently waited for this Blog Admin to get back to him upon representations that this would occur and yet still nothing.

What happened to that Address and Contact Information that used to be posted at the top right of the Blog to be able to contact Washington, DC for oversight and review of federal officers and employees?

Meanwhile Mr. Turner goes in and out of the hospital having developed a bleeding ulcer all while waiting for follow up from this Blog and others.

The CJC just recently posted the re-appointment of an App Div Judge and others to the CJC by Paterson and others. In fact, one of the App Div Judges helped slice Turner's family apart while the CJC was supposed to get Transcripts nearly 6 years ago.

Looks like business as usual without any hint or sign of a change so far.

So much for NY getting "rocked". heard that so long ago we may all turn to stone and be rocks ourselves when it happens while families and other rights, homes and more destroyed.

But, oh, the feds the feds the feds. Many of the players locally laugh when they hear that.


ah yes..The Soon a gram said...

April 20, 2009: We expect to have the name of a specific contact person soon, to whom information may be presented to regarding any complaint and/or information filed with any FBI agent, squad or regional office that needs re-review, reconsideration or special attention. Meanwhile, the address is: U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Professional Responsibility, Room 3266, 950 Pennsylvania, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20530 --- Send us an email request and we will advise you directly once the contact information is made available.

Anonymous said...

David Bookstaver is a fat empty overpaid suit, who is a coverup artist and should be fired

Anonymous said...

R U this Brady

2007 NY Slip Op 04953
CA 07-00344.

Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of New York, Fourth Department.
Decided June 8, 2007.




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See Video of Senator John L. Sampson's 1st Hearing on Court 'Ethics' Corruption

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