Thursday, May 13, 2010

Long Distance Citrus Canker Runaround -- Yours Is No Disgrace?



Given that we just saw the State blow $120k on dubious "expert" anti-gay adoption testimony, I don't want to overstate anything.

But is it too much to suggest that the State's furious scorched earth litigation strategy in defending the citrus canker lawsuits -- paying Adorno & Yoss hundreds of thousands of dollars (millions?) to force Bobby Gilbert to try multiple suits in different forums for the last six years -- ranks up there with one of the more colossally stupid wastes of taxpayer money in recent memory?

I guess I say that given the canker eradication program they have spent so much money vigorously defending at taxpayer expense -- a program that radically changed the landscape of South Florida -- was such a wanker in the first place.

As I've previously written, if you grew up in South Florida you probably remember orange, lemon, grapefruit, sour orange, blood orange, tangelo, those weird hard orange/lemon hybrid fruits, and all manner of citrus in your backyard, in your neighbor's backyard, in the empty yards, in the swales, on your way to school, on your way to your friend's house, and pretty much everywhere you went.

You could bike around the block and collect all the citrus refreshment/armed weaponry you needed in a matter of moments, and later on it turned out all that backyard fruit made a great marinade!

But those days are gone.

In their place, we've had a perpetual transfer of taxpayer funds into the coffers of Adorno & Yoss, so they could seriously argue that suits that raise similar issues in different counties all have to proceed simultaneously (rather than wait for the benefit of an appellate ruling in one of the cases that could impact the legal issues raised in the other suits).

That should have been a big sign that something was rotten in the overly zealous way these cases were defended.

I have no idea why the State feels the need to so obstinately defend their questionable citrus canker program in the first place (pride/hubris from the decisionmakers involved?) but we are finally beginning to see the light at the end of the Wal-Mart voucher tunnel:

The Fourth District Court of Appeal unanimously held that some 55,000 Broward property owners are due $11 million for healthy trees felled by state chain saws from 1995 to 2006.

``Government has regulatory power for the very purpose of safeguarding the rights of citizens, not for destroying them,'' the judges wrote. ``Under any possible meaning, if government cuts down and burns private property having value, then government has taken it. And if government has taken it, government must pay for it.''

Confirming a widely held belief among property owners, the ruling said it was ``apparent from the history of this case that [the Department] destroyed these privately owned healthy trees not because they were `imminently dangerous' to anybody, but instead to benefit the citrus industry.''

17 comments:

  1. Wow...something good out of Broward.

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  2. "There is no merit in any of these arguments."

    You missed the best part, above, which is how the 4th dealt with Adorno Yoss's arguments.

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  3. Great post. Remember when lawyers used to be proud of their resolution and client management skills?

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  4. Querey:

    If you get drunk off of a rum-drink made from your own fruit tree...does the sex fall in the category of "what happens while drunk on your own fruit tree rum-drinks..."

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  5. I echo 10:35 -- excellent.

    I strongly recommend that the state stay far away from my citrus plants. Staring down one of my mother-in-laws Santeria curses would hardly be worth any 'benefit' of eliminating my plants, and the boils on the testicle sometimes progress into full-blown cancer. Double ouch.

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  6. Is it fact that Ceasar's Palace" was a type of LSD and "Morning Glory" is a plant which produces a trip very much like that of LSD.

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  7. Vietnam. Painted Black

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  8. 10:36 - No. In fact, the Sex did happen.

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  9. What rhymes with orange?

    Door hinge.

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  10. Can Gilbert finally take Shumie Time?

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  11. Argggh! call all girls! Hoist your anchor matey. We be shipping out soon.

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  12. cap’n sfl-- you wear a bandanna while you windsurf?

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  13. Door hinge? How about porridge?

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  14. What rhymes with the word 'windsurf?'

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  15. Adorno's billables need a "top hat."

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  16. There is no word that rhymes with 'windsurf'

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  17. He's been at this over a decade.

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