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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Your Luck Won't Last

As I had suspected, the Bell case won't have any impact on the proceedings in Arken or Robinson. I finally heard from Greg Hartman yesterday. He tells me that Bennett, Hartman, Morris and Kaplan is pleased with the verdict in the Bell case and believe that it is the first step towards securing and protecting the rights of members in relying on figures given to them by PERS. Hartman also agrees that the Bell case probably has little bearing on the rights of PERS members who are already retired.

So, although there is some similarity between Kay Bell's claims and the verdict in her case to the promissory estoppel claim in Arken, the differences in facts and circumstances and approach to litigation are such that it will not bear on the outcome of cases currently in litigation and on retirees affected by Arken/Robinson. For that, we simply have to wait for the higher courts to rule. And, we also have White - a case of profound importance to all of us. If the courts rule that PERB breached its fiduciary duty to members, and the court invalidates the settlement agreement, almost everything done so far will have to be undone. I'd be placing my money on White to dig us out of this hole.

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