SBD/29/Law Politics

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  • BEAT-THE-CLOCK-TIME ON CAPITOL HILL FOR ANTITRUST BILLS

         The House Judiciary Committee's subcomittee on economic and
    commercial law approved a "limited" bill aimed at removing
    baseball's antitrust exemption should the owners unilaterally
    impose a salary cap with the players on strike.  The full
    Judiciary Commitee is expected to vote on the bill today, and
    Chairman Jack Brooks (D-TX) has vowed to get the measure out of
    committee.  Rep. Mike Synar (D-OK), who sponsored the bill:
    "This is an historic day.  For the first time in the history of
    Congress, a subcommittee -- and tomorrow a committee -- has voted
    to remove an exemption that has existed for over 50 years."
    However, Synar's bill passed after two "key provisions" desired
    by the MLBPA were deleted:  1) An automatic injucntion against a
    salary cap until any lawsuits are decided; 2) The courts would
    dcided whether the union would have to decertify before a suit
    could be heard.  MLBPA General Counsel Gene Orza said the union
    officials needed to study the changes before reacting
    (AP/WASHINGTON POST, 9/29).  But Orza did say:  "The mere fact a
    bill has been reported out is a major step forward" (WALL STREET
    JOURNAL, 9/29).  Acting MLB Commissioner Bud Selig:  "Jack Brooks
    said he was going to do this so nothing about it is surprising"
    (N.Y. TIMES, 9/29).  Rep. Hamilton Fish (R-NY), the lone
    dissenter:  "What is Congress doing interfering in a labor
    dispute when there is no national security interest involved?"
    (N.Y. NEWSDAY, 9/29).
         ON THE SENATE SIDE:  The developments in the House "offered
    encouragement" to Sen. Howard Metzenbaum (D-OH), who plans to
    attach a similar bill as an amendment to an appropriations bill
    for the District of Columbia.  That could come today, although
    one Metzenbaum aide said he may wait until House Judiciary gets
    its bill out of committee (N.Y. TIMES, 9/29).  Co-sponsor Sen.
    Orrin Hatch (R-UT):  "There's a lot of maneuvering behind the
    scenes" (AP, 9/29).      TODAY:  The House Subcommittee on Labor-
    Management Relations holds a hearing on a bill proposed by Rep.
    Pat Williams (D-MT) to impose binding arbitration on both sides.
    

    Print | Tags: Anheuser Busch, Law and Politics, MLB
  • DUCKING FOR DOLLARS? WOMAN SUES LEMIEUX, PENS OVER ACCIDENT

         Mario Lemieux is a defendant in a civil suit filed by a
    woman who was hit in the nose by a hockey puck at a game five
    years ago.  The incident occurred during a Penguins-Rangers game
    while play was stopped because of a fight.  The woman, Patricia
    Ward, is suing both Lemieux and the Penguins for negligence since
    Lemiuex flipped the puck during a timeout -- a violation of NHL
    rules.  Her attorney, Charles Evans, noted a precedent -- a woman
    struck by a baseball during batting practice at Three Rivers
    successfully suing for damages (Jan Ackerman, PITTSBURGH POST-
    GAZETTE, 9/29).
    

    Print | Tags: Law and Politics, NHL, Pittsburgh Penguins
  • MCNALL'S STAKE IN THE KINGS TURNED OVER TO A TRUSTEE

         A dispute over who will control L.A. Kings President Bruce
    McNall's assets -- including his remaining 28% in the Kings --
    "has been resolved, with McNall agreeing to turn over clear
    control to a court-appointed bankruptcy trustee."  The agreement
    gives trustee R. Todd Neilson "clear authority to sell McNall's
    interest in the Kings at some point.  No sale is planned, and
    Neilson has agreed to abide by NHL rules requiring league
    approval if he chooses to sell the stake."  The agreement also
    states Neilson is not waiving his rights to potentially challenge
    McNall's sale of 72% of the team to Jeffrey Sudikoff and Joseph
    Cohen.  "Sources, however, indicate that such a challenge is
    unlikely and that Neilson is simply preserving his rights."
    Attorneys for McNall and the trustee "hailed" the agreement as a
    positive step (OTTAWA CITIZEN, 9/29).
    

    Print | Tags: Law and Politics, NHL
  • SUIT AGAINST BASEBALL SETTLED WITHOUT A TRIAL

         On the eve of their lawsuit against MLB, Vincent Piazza and
    Vincent Tirendi, two men who removed from the unsuccessful bid to
    move the Giants to St. Petersburg, reached a settlement with
    baseball officials.  Both sides would only offer a short
    statement saying that they had reached an "amicable resolution,"
    but sources revealed some specifics.  MLB will agree to pay them
    more than $6M and declare that the owners were wrong in rejecting
    the two as possible owners.  Piazza:  "We got everything we
    wanted.  We got money, and we got the apology."  The settlement
    also stipluates that the two may apply again for ownership
    (Michael Bamberger, PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 9/29).
         TAMPA/ST. PETE GROUP IS WATCHING:  Vincent Naimoli, who led
    the Giants bid and now retains local rights to any expansion
    effort, said he was pleased the suit was resolved.  But Noam
    Neusner of the TAMPA TRIBUNE notes that videotaped depositions
    taken for the case "might come in handy" if Naimoli and St.
    Petersburg officials decide to "reactivate their now-dormant
    lawsuit" against MLB.  Naimoli's attorney, John Higgins, said if
    Piazza and Tirendi "struck a deal guaranteeing them ownership of
    an expansion team elsewhere, and thus eliminating St. Petersburg
    from contention," then the city and Naimoli "could resurrect
    their court action" (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 9/29).
    

    Print | Tags: Law and Politics, MLB
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