HAWAII STATE BAR ASSOCIATION
1132 Bishop Street, Suite 906
Honolulu, HI 96813
Thursday, October 23, 2008, 11:30 a.m.
1. CALL TO ORDER
President Jeffrey Sia called the meeting to order at 11:39 a.m. with a quorum present. The following persons were present for all or part of the meeting:
Rai Saint Chu
P. Gregory Frey
Steven Songstad (by phone)
Board Members Absent
2. APPROVAL OF MINUTES – Minutes of the September 25th board meeting were approved by consensus.
3. TREASURER’S REPORT – Treasurer Douglas Moore referred the Board to the latest version of the proposed 2009 budget (discussed under Unfinished Business).
4. COMMITTEE / REPRESENTATIVE REPORTS
a. HSBA-Disciplinary Board Liaison Committee - President Sia introduced and welcomed ODC Executive Director Janet Hunt to HSBA’s board meeting. Ms. Hunt said that she recognized the need for things to change at ODC and encouraged input from members on ways to improve. In the meantime, she explained that ODC is trying to establish procedures and deadlines to streamline their processes. She also indicated she is reviewing whether the ODC procedure of providing verbal/written ethics opinions presents conflict issues and suggested that the ODC and the HSBA consider developing an alternative source for such opinions.
Ms. Hunt was asked whether, as Fund Administrator for the Lawyers’ Fund for Client Protection, she would be able to provide more financial information on the Funds’ budget and claims process. Ms. Hunt responded that she expects the Fund to pay out numerous backlogged and anticipates a possible depletion of LFCP funds within the next 2 years if no fee is assessed to members for the 2009 year.
b. Strategic Planning Committee - President Sia reported that the Committee will concentrate on communications issue s in 2009 and that the next meeting is on December 11th.
5. EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S REPORT - Lyn Flanigan reported on the following items: Bar Convention - over 600 attendees expected at annual meeting luncheon; Katyal activities - Saturday morning event for high school and law school students, Monday morning breakfast for business community (board members invited); Elections - Rai Saint Chu announced the results of the HSBA/YLD/JSC elections; MCLE – the proposed rule was distributed; HJF - annual meeting successfully held; Member Benefits Administrator - recently hired.
6. YLD REPORT - Jill Hasegawa reported on the following YLD activities: YLD Annual Meeting Breakfast at the bar convention will recognize Justice Award recipients Kendall Wong and retired ICA Chief Judge James Burns; the Liberty Bell recipient is Michael Anderson; the high school Mock Trial project has about 17 volunteer coaches; update on the YLD Challenge - HSBA Board may be slightly ahead of the YLD Board (final count at next meeting).
7. UNFINISHED BUSINESS
a. UPL Rule - President Sia presented the proposed revised rule on the definition of the practice of law. He explained that although he preferred a simpler version, this comprehensive one may be palatable to the other entities in the UPL Coalition. The Board discussed the proposed rule, recommended certain amendments to the proposed draft, and agreed to submit the final rule to the Supreme Court. Members would then have an opportunity to comment when the Court posts the rule for comment.
Action taken: A motion was made, seconded, and carried without opposition to approve the recommendation as amended. (Exhibit A—the UPL rule as amended and approved by the Board.)
b. 2009 Project/Program Budgets (see agenda item 7.a. and handout material) - Treasurer Douglas Moore explained that the Finance Committee tried to keep the 2009 budget as conservative as possible keeping in mind the situation with the premises. He noted that the Executive Committee had reviewed the Budget and the proposed pilot projects recommended by the Strategic Planning Committee for 2009.
Action taken: After further discussion, a motion was made, seconded, and carried without opposition to approve the recommendation of the Executive Committee to increase all HSBA member dues by $13 to implement the strategic planning initiatives of establishing a Leadership Academy and Senior Counsel Division and to cover costs of an MCLE staff person if/when MCLE is adopted by the Court.
A motion was made, seconded, and carried without opposition to adopt option #2 in Ms. Flanigan’s 10/20/08 memo to the Board on the 2009 Budget which proposed a special dues assessment of $85 for Active members and $45 for Inactive members to fund a lease/premises reserves to cover costs for a possible purchase of office space, or an expansion of space should HSBA decide to remain in leased premises. The Board also agreed that a letter should be distributed to members informing them about the increase and special assessment.
8. NEW BUSINESS
a. Section Budgets/ Collection of Dues (see agenda item 8.a. and Exhibit C) Ms. Flanigan explained how a few HSBA Sections anticipate a large bank balance in 2009 after expenses. The HSBA Board has a duty to ensure that Sections are not excessively collecting funds with no benefit to the members of the Section. With the new requirements of IRS Form 990 approaching, HSBA will need to do more documentation and reporting on its procedures and relationships with internal and external entities and Sections with funds in excess of $25,000 may have to file tax returns or, in the alternative, may ask HSBA to include them in returns. The Board suggested setting up a committee to establish policies to address these issues.
Action taken: A motion was made, seconded, and carried without opposition to approve the proposed budgets submitted by the Sections for 2009.
b. Premises Assessment (see agenda item 8.b.) - see discussion under 7.b.
The meeting adjourned at 1:15 p.m.
HSBA Executive Director
Carolyn M. Yu