Page:The Green Bag (1889–1914), Volume 25.pdf/569

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538

The Green Bag

sections of the state there are a com paratively large number of judges who have comparatively few cases, whereas in other sections there are comparatively few judges who have a great many cases. We have carried our appellate system to unreasonable lengths and the discre tionary power originally intended to be exercised in the court of first instance is exercised by the appellate courts. Our system is top-heavy. One-half of the judges of the state sit in review of the action of the other half. Every act of the court of first instance is appealable. Our appellate courts are overburdened with work, much of which is wholly un necessary. The law reports are full of opinions which have no permanent value upon points of practice and the powers of the trial and special term judges are un duly limited." Mr. Justice Seabury also referred to the Code of Civil Procedure as an abomination and urged the need of a short simple practice act. Bar Associations Maine. — At a meeting of the Maine Bar Association held Oct. 14, at Augusta, the following officers were elected: President, George W. Heselton of Gardiner; vice-president, L. T. Carleton of Winthrop; secretary and treas urer, C. L. Andrews of Augusta; ex ecutive committee, George W. Hesel ton, Gardiner; Joseph Williamson, Au gusta; William H. Fisher, Augusta; Will C. Atkins, Gardiner, and C. B. Perkins, Waterville. Vermont. — Attorney-General James C. McReynolds was to have been the guest of honor at the annual dinner of the Vermont Bar Association, but could not leave Washington to be present. Clarke Fitts delivered his annual address as president of the association Oct. 8,

discussing court procedure in Vermont and deprecating reversals for insub stantial error. The Committee on Jurisprudence and Law Reform made nine recommendations, with respect to (1) enlargement of the duties of the Committee on Professional Conduct; (2) proposed approval of the Uniform State Acts; (3) drafting of a workmen's compensation law; (4) passage of a law requiring the Supreme Court, in ordering new trials, to file their opinions a sufficient time before the case is re manded to enable counsel to ask for a rehearing; f6) adoption of certain resolutions similar to those of one of the county bar associations; (6) bills of exceptions stating the evidence in narra tive form; (7) assignments of errors, restricting the questions which may be considered in the Supreme Court; (8) legislation looking to uniform municipal courts throughout the state, and (9) revision and consolidation of the general laws of the state. Most of these articles of recommendation were laid on the table for further consideration by com mittees to be appointed by the president. The association, however, approved of the proposed consolidation of statutes and of making municipal courts uniform. On the next day the Burlington Free Press published an editorial approving of these reform proposals, and urging greater expedition of procedure. We quote one paragraph: "As a matter of fact Vermont has reached a point where we have not the time formerly available for long drawn out processes. Vermont lawyers who visit some of the New York courts, for example, are impressed by the way in which time is saved in the handling of civil cases. So many impor tant matters are pressing for considera tion there as to force brevity, although in some other directions New York might well learn from Vermont."