U.S. District Court for N.D. Iowa Expands Courthouse Operations, Open House 6/29

Via a press release from the Clerk of Court for the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Iowa:   Effective June 15, 2009, the Cedar Rapids courthouse operations at 4200 C Street SW have expanded to two buildings.   The original Building A will continue to house the US Probation Office.  The newly renovated Building B will house Courtrooms, Clerk’s Office docketing, and satellite offices for the U.S. Attorney and Federal Public Defender.  Please pay close attention to court orders on hearings and trial scheduling orders.    

Those wishing to see the new facilities are invited to an  Open House to be held Monday, June 29, 2009, from 1:30 pm to 4:30 pm.  Members of the Bar and their staff are welcome.  There will be tours of the facilities throughout the afternoon, briefings by the US Marshal Service, and demonstrations of the courtroom technology at 2:00 pm and at 3:00 pm.  Refreshments will be served.  Please join us for this festive occasion and RSVP to Diane Leibold at diane_leibold@iand.uscourts.gov or 319-286-2334.  

Linn County District Court Video Court Resumes

Via a press release received from the Linn County District Court:   After a one year hiatus due to the flood, video court at the Linn County District Court will be up and running  June 16, 2009. Defendants scheduled to appear at 10:30 am will be appearing by closed circuit tv from the jail. Attorneys who have bond reductions at that time have their choice of going to the jail and being with their client or being in courtroom 3-D and using the secure telephone line to speak with their client.

LCBA Members Make $3,000 in Donations to Sixth Judicial District “Office Supply Fund”

You may recall the LCBA reached out to its members this March to make donations to an “Office Supply Fund” in response to the Iowa Judiciary’s  budget crisis.   The LCBA had asked Judge Remley “How can we help?”, and he  suggested the LCBA donate office supplies so that the District could focus more of its resources on its other operating expenses.     In response, members of the LCBA have since donated more than $3,000 for the “Office Supply Fund”.     A list of members who have donated can be seen here.

LCBA June bar meeting/Annual Meeting June 16

The  Annual Meeting of the Linn County Bar Association  meeting will be held  on Thursday,  June 16, 2009, at  Noon, at the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art,  located at 410  3rd Avenue SE,  Cedar Rapids.     The presentation will be a Legislative Update.   Elections for the 2009-2010  Board will also be held.    

Lunch is $7 and will be  catered by  Kristeena’s.


RSVP’s  are required only if  you plan to attend.   If you are  planning to attend, please  reply to the Attendance Committee’s email that will be sent the Friday prior to the meeting.

Governor signs legislation that improves budget outlook for Judicial Branch; New court filing fees in effect May 26

The Iowa Supreme Court issued a press release May 27 regarding legislation signed by Governor Culver May 26 that reduces the budget shortfall the judicial branch expected for the next fiscal year.   The press release can be viewed here.   One result of the legislation is that all clerk of court offices will be restored to full customary business hours effective June 1, and the June 5 and June 19 court closure days will be cancelled.

Also, the legislation increases certain court fees and costs effective May 26.   A general list of fees can be viewed here.    Among the fee changes are  increases for the filing fee for a civil petition from $100 to $185 and for a small claims petition from $50 to $85.

LCBA Summer Outing set for July 9

The LCBA Summer Outing is set for Thursday, July  9.    Members should have already received their registration materials in the mail.   If you did not, please contact Outing Chair Darin Luneckas at 294-8777 or email him at dluneckas@qwestoffice.net.  

There is a terrific agenda planned, from the morning 3.25 hour CLE, to the afternoon bike and golfing events, to the evening supper and other festivities at Hunter’s Ridge Golf Course.   Please remember, members must have paid their LCBA 2008-2009 dues to attend Summer Outing activities. Paid members may bring summer law clerks to Summer Outing events, but will be charged $15  per  person for attendance at the evening Hunter’s Ridge supper.

The CLE will be held from 8:00 a.m.-11:30 a.m. at Dows Fine Arts Center at Coe College. Registration will be from 7:30-8:00 a.m., and a continental breakfast will be available. At agenda will be available at a later date. Application will be made for 3.25  credit hours, including 1 ethics hour. Contact CLE Chair Bob Teig at 363-0091 for any questions.

The golf and biking events will both take place in the afternoon following the CLE.   Details regarding both events will be sent to those who register for the events. For more info on the golfing event or to register, contact Dave Thinnes at 363-3185.   Golf registration is 11:30-12:45, and shotgun start is  at 1 p.m.

bike ride will be a   25-30 mile route starting at 1:30 p.m, complete with refreshments  and sag wagon.   For more information, contact Stephanie Hinz at shinz@pbalawfirm.com or

Supper will follow at Hunter’s Ridge Golf Course, with refreshments served at 5:30 p.m. and supper catered by Catering by L.J.‘s beginning at 6:30 p.m.

For any general  questions about the Summer Outing, contact Darin Luneckas at  dluneckas@qwest.net or at 294-8777.

Charitable Donations Committee Funding Request Deadline is July 1, 2009

Periodically, the Linn County Bar Association Charitable Donations Committee distributes grants to nonprofit organizations. The committee is now accepting applications. The applications must be received by the committee by July 1, 2009. For more information, please see the following documents:

Charitable Donations Committee Funding Letter

Charitable Donations Committee Funding Request Application

LCBA Nominating Committee Report

The Nominating Committee of the LCBA has selected the following slate of nominees to be placed on the ballot for election at the Annual Meeting to be held June 18:

President-Elect:                      Stephanie Hinz (to be President  2010-2011 term)

Secretary:                                          Laura Mueller (term expiring June 2011)

Board of Governors:           Rich Mitvalsky (term expiring June 2012)
                                                                         Ian Thornhill  (term expiring June 2012)
                                                                        Kerry Finley (term expiring June 2011)

 Current President-Elect Connie Alt will become President at the Annual Meeting.

In addition to the names submitted by the Nominating Committee, any member of the LCBA may have his or her name placed upon the ballot for a position by submitting to the LCBA a petition with at least 10 LCBA members‘ signatures.   Nomination petitions shall be submitted to LCBA President Scott McLeod(smcleod@lynchdallas.com) at least four weeks prior to the meeting.   Members will vote on and elect the officers and governors for the open positions at the Annual Meeting.

Applicants sought for Linn County Judicial Magistrate positions

The Judicial Magistrate Appointing Commission has issued the following notice regarding appointments of Judicial Magistrates in Linn County:








Pursuant to Iowa Code §602.6403, the Linn County Magistrate Appointing Commission is accepting applications for the office of Linn County Magistrate for terms to begin August 1, 2009.    


                      To be considered by the Commission, the original completed application must be delivered to the office of the District Court Administrator, Linn County Courthouse, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, no later than 3:00 p.m., Friday, May 15, 2009 and a copy sent to each Commissioner by that same date and time at the addresses listed.   State-prescribed applications may be picked up at the Court Administration Office or a copy of the application may be requested via e-mail from harold.soppe@iowacourts.gov.


                      No application or letter of renewal will be accepted after Friday, May 15, 2009, at 3:00 p.m. regardless of the reason.   Any application, together with supporting documents and letters of support or opposition, must be sent to Commissioners at the addresses listed.  


                      Applicants for the positions are not required to be members of the Iowa Bar but must be a resident of Linn County and less than seventy-two years of age at the time of appointment.   The present salary for the position is $37,740.


                      The Linn County Magistrate Nominating Commission has set Tuesday, May 19, 2009, at 8:30 a.m. as the date for a meeting at which all applicants for the position will be interviewed by the Commission.   Following the interviews, the Commission will, in all probability, proceed by ballot to select the Magistrates to fill the positions.   The interviews and balloting will take place in Courtroom 3-A of the Linn County Courthouse.   The Commission shall then certify to Chief Judge David Remley and Clerk of Court Sharon Modracek the names of the successful candidates.  


The persons appointed to the position will serve a term of office ending August 1, 2013 and may stand for reappointment at that time.


                      There is no requirement for applicants to personally interview with Commissioners prior to May 19, 2009, nor is there a requirement for all applicants to obtain letters of support or opposition.   It is up to each individual Commissioner to determine whether or not they will schedule personal interviews with applicants; however, the individual policy of a Commissioner in this regard is to be applied consistently to all applicants who request an interview in a timely manner.   Letters should be directed to Judge Patrick R. Grady at the Courthouse with copies sent directly to each Commissioner.    It is suggested that letters of support or opposition be mailed to the Commissioners no later than May 12, 2009.


To facilitate any personal contacts that an applicant may wish to make with a Commissioner, a complete list of the names and addresses of each Commissioner is provided below:


Chairman:             Patrick R. Grady, District Judge

P.O. Box 5488

Cedar Rapids, IA 52406-5488

(319) 398-3920



Stephen Jackson, Jr.                                                         Nancy Evans

                                              The Armstrong Centre                                                 2336 Linden Drive S.E.

222 Third Avenue S.E. Ste. 250                     Cedar Rapids, IA 52403

PO Box 74198                                                                         (319) 362-7823

Cedar Rapids, IA   52401          

                                              (319) 363-2683


Mark Brown                                                                               James Sattler

211 Third Ave. S.W.                                                     4359 Pioneer Trail, S.E.

Cedar Rapids, IA   52404                                         Cedar Rapids, IA 52403

(319) 862-2519                                                                     (319) 395-9157 (business)


Tom Neenan

1201 Central Avenue

Center Point, IA   52213

(319) 849-1844