In this issue:
“Second Century” Update: Implementation Planning Begins
As explained in a news release sent to “First Monday” readers on April 17, strategic planning for the “second century” of the College of Law has now reached the stage of review and approval by the University of Idaho Board of Regents (State Board of Education). The Board voted on April 17 “to approve the request by the University of Idaho for authority to proceed with implementation planning for the two-location concept, including operating budget, capital budget, facility needs analysis, curriculum and an implementation timeline.” The full text of the news release may be viewed at Today@Idaho. The concept document is available for download.
The Board’s action came after presentations by a panel consisting of University of Idaho President Timothy White, College of Law Dean Don Burnett, Idaho Supreme Court Chief Justice Daniel Eismann, former Chief Justice (and Law Advisory Council chairperson) Linda Copple Trout, academic consultant Richard Morgan (a law dean at three western public universities and chair of the American Bar Association law school standards review committee), and Student Bar Association President Anna Faller. Chief Justice Eismann informed the Board that the Legislature has appropriated funds in Fiscal Year 2009 (beginning in July, 2008) for planning an “Idaho Law Learning Center” – a project on which the Supreme Court seeks to collaborate with the College of Law. The Chief Justice emphasized that such a learning center would serve multiple public purposes, including establishment of a site for the College’s branch location in Boise, and would provide unique opportunities for students. Justice Trout explained how the Law Advisory Council, after a year of meetings and study, had concluded that the two-location concept would best serve the College’s students and the State of Idaho. Dean Morgan summarized his analysis and determination that the two-location concept would best fulfill the University of Idaho’s statewide mission in legal education. SBA President Faller noted that the College’s enhanced statewide presence would benefit students at both locations.
The College of Law faculty and University leaders are now preparing a plan to implement the concept of a statewide public law school with two places of opportunity, under unified administration by the University of Idaho. The plan, to be presented to the Board this summer, will contain a business model and will outline steps for the phased development of a J.D. education program in the Treasure Valley. The College will continue – and continue to invest in – the J.D. program at Moscow. As explained in the concept document, each location will provide a set of differentiated and complementary subject-matter emphases along with the core J.D. curriculum. The center of law school administration will remain in Moscow.
Further information about the “second century” process and implementation planning may be obtained from Dean Burnett at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bellwood Programs Illuminate the Legacies of Hamilton, Jefferson, and Holmes
On April 21, Kenneth W. Starr, Dean of the Pepperdine University School of Law, and a former federal appellate judge and Solicitor General of the United States, delivered the Sherman J. Bellwood Memorial Lecture at the University Auditorium on the Moscow campus. Dean Starr spoke on “The Enduring Constitutional Conversation: Mr. Hamilton and Mr. Jefferson,” elucidating the Hamiltonian preference for strong central government and contrasting it with the Jeffersonian concept of federated power. Dean Starr drew upon his background as a prolific scholar who has authored approximately 20 law review or periodical articles and book chapters just since 1999, and who has written two books: Juries and Justice, and First Among Equals: The Supreme Court in American Life. Dean Starr used the Hamiltonian and Jeffersonian perspectives to explain the alignment of justices in the present Supreme Court, as illustrated by the majority and separate opinions in the “Bong Hits 4 Jesus” First Amendment case involving student speech. See Morse v. Frederick, 127 S.Ct. 2618 (2007). Dean Starr was welcomed to the University by President Timothy White, and to the State of Idaho by Attorney General Lawrence Wasden. He was introduced by University of Idaho law professor and associate dean Richard Seamon, who served as Assistant to the Solicitor General of the United States during Dean Starr’s tenure.
Professor Seamon also presided at an earlier panel discussion, anchored by Dean Starr, in the College of Law courtroom. The panel’s topic, “The Enduring Legacy of Justice Holmes,” afforded Dean Starr an opportunity to expound upon the principle of judicial restraint articulated by Justice Holmes a century ago when he dissented from the Supreme Court’s invalidation, on substantive due process grounds, of state legislation regulating bakers’ working hours in Lochner v. New York, 198 U.S. 45 (1908). Dean Starr was joined on the panel by Dean Don Burnett, who compared Justice Holmes’ jurisprudence with that of Justice Louis Brandeis; by University of Idaho professor Don Crowley (chair of the Department of Political Science), who examined Lochner and subsequent cases from the perspective of the Supreme Court as a politically shaped institution; and by Gonzaga University law professor Sheri Engelken, who linked judicial deference to the rationality review standard and then questioned whether the standard has been applied consistently in cases where implied as well as enumerated constitutional rights are at stake.
The Bellwood Lecture and the panel discussion may be viewed on streaming video, emanating from the College of Law website. Dean Starr’s biography, including his service as court-appointed independent counsel in the Whitewater case and related investigations, is also available on the website. Further information about this year’s Bellwood programs may be obtained from Professor Seamon at email@example.com.