New Bar program to assist lawyers and their clients

first_imgNew Bar program to assist lawyers and their clients April 15, 2001 Regular News New Bar program to assist lawyers and their clientsConsumers and attorneys can all breathe a little easier, thanks to the Bar’s new Attorney Consumer Assistance Program (ACAP), which rolled into action March 1. As part of the Bar’s Lawyer Regulation division, ACAP acts as a sort of pre-complaint intervention program to try to sort out attorney-client problems before an actual complaint is filed. “Our ultimate goal is to resolve as much as we can so that the public’s happy with the Bar. We’re trying to improve our image with the public. Our ultimate goal is to help the consumer and to help the lawyer,” said Donna Hostutler, Program Administrator for ACAP. “The wonderful thing about the service is that, since we’ve been up and running, we’ve gotten very positive feedback, not only from the public, but also from the membership,” she said. “Many, many attorneys who have been contacted by ACAP and given a `heads up’ to fix a problem have responded positively. Then we’ve got a happy client, we’ve got a happy lawyer, and everybody’s happy it’s a win-win situation.” The nine-member staff, which includes four attorneys and three program assistants, fields calls from consumers who think they may have a complaint against their lawyer. A program assistant initially answers the call, gathers general information about the consumer’s problem, then forwards the information directly to a staff attorney, who tries to help the person resolve their complaint before it reaches the lawyer regulation staff. The program assistants have done a fantastic job so far dealing with clients who run the emotional gamut, said Hostutler. “We’ve had criers, yellers, screamers, and lawyers complaining about other lawyers,” she said. ACAP staff attorneys may, in the course of a call, explain that a caller’s problem with their lawyer does not fall under the Rules Regulating The Florida Bar, and therefore, is not fodder for an official complaint. Staff attorneys also, if applicable, explain how to file an official Bar complaint, contact the caller’s attorney to discuss the situation, and list other options available to the caller, such as contacting outside counsel or grievance mediation. Like all Bar staff attorneys, ACAP attorneys are not permitted to offer legal advice over the phone. “The general feeling seems to be that a program such as this has been needed for a long time, and virtually all of the members have expressed gratitude for the opportunity to respond on an informal level to what previously would have required a time-consuming, not to mention stressful written response,” said Donald Spangler, ACAP staff attorney and former Tallahassee Branch Bar Counsel. The program is modeled after programs in place in several states, including Georgia, Utah, Arizona, and Colorado. The Mississippi Bar also has a similar program, which ACAP staff members visited to witness in action and take notes. After one month of operation, “we’ve handled more than a thousand requests for assistance that otherwise would have gone to Lawyer Regulation in Headquarters or the branch offices,” said Spangler. During the month of March, the hotline received 3,018 calls, opened 1,132 cases, and sent out 395 complaint forms. “Normally, each call would have resulted in a complaint form being sent out. Now, we only send out about a third of what we used to, cutting the paperwork coming through the lawyer regulation office,” Hostutler said. “We’re all anticipating that the program will eliminate a certain percentage of the written complaints that previously went to the branch offices and necessitated the time-consuming process of requiring a written response, a rebuttal, and then a determination that there was no basis for referral to a grievance committee. If we are correct, this will obviously result not only in fewer complaints to be handled by the branch offices, but will also free up bar counsel’s time from having to handle meritless complaints,” Spangler added.last_img

Making small changes to achieve extraordinary results

first_imgWhat would happen to your life if you gave everything just 5% more effort?Michael Alden, author of 5% MORE: Making Small Changes To Achieve Extraordinary Results, says it transforms everything. Success is often the result of applying just a little bit more effort.It’s not always a massive effort, a radical change, or an overhaul. Often it’s just changing at the margin that makes all the difference.I recently had the opportunity to ask Michael about his research and new book. Michael Alden is the founder and CEO of Blue Vase Marketing and a recipient of SmartCEO Magazine’s 2016 Future 50 Award.What made you decide to research the concept of 5%?After the publication of my first book, Ask More, Get More, I received some fantastic feedback and accolades.  But as I continued to speak with people about achieving their goals, I found that many of them wanted more.  Despite all of the time and money they put into “personal development,” they were not where they wanted to be.  I wondered, why are so many people stuck?  Is there something that the average, everyday person can do to get ahead?  And is it something that is truly achievable, something that doesn’t cost money, something that yields real tangible results? continue reading » 10SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Signed Agreement on cooperation in the implementation of the Operational Plan for the development of cycling tourism in Šibenik-Knin County

first_imgFor the purpose of further development of cyclotourism as an important selective form of tourism in the Šibenik-Knin County, the Operational Plan for the Development of Cyclotourism of the Šibenik-Knin County for the period until the end of 2020 has been prepared.The Operational Plan (OP) for the development of cycling tourism in Šibenik-Knin County is based on the Action Plan for the development of cycling tourism in the Republic of Croatia and the Master Plan of Šibenik-Knin County. The operational plan analyzes the current state of cycling tourism in our county, conducted research on all important characteristics of the external and internal environment in order to identify factors that may determine the further development of cycling, defined goals for cycling tourism and identified development projects, all in order to position Šibenik- Knin County as a desirable cycling tourist destination.In Šibenik-Knin County over 2400 km of groomed bike & hike trails Photo: Šibenik-Knin Tourist BoardWith ninety bike paths with a total of 2450 kilometers (90 bike paths and 15 routes), this region has become an attractive destination for cyclists in the last two years. A website has been launched for the needs of cycling tourism Bike & Hike which in a great way provides all the necessary information, from bike paths, destinations, accommodation in family accommodation, as well as additional services needed by cyclists. It is extremely important that all bike paths are made according to the standards of the profession and all are marked as well as connected with accommodation in family accommodation and additional tourist offer.The director of the Šibenik-Knin County Tourist Board, Željana Šikić, emphasized the importance of developing cyclotourism for extending the tourist season in our area. “We are currently in the second year of implementation of the cyclotourism development project in Šibenik-Knin County, and so far trails and routes have been traced and categorized in the entire county. They are prepared for the beginning as a base from which we will later develop other trails. We divided the bike paths in Šibenik-Knin County through 5 sub-regions, and all paths are circular. Each subregion has three trails by category, road, mountain and recreational, and of course everything starts from signalization ” pointed out recently for the portal Šikić and added that in the beginning they looked long-term and quality, and for that it was first necessary to make all the infrastructural prerequisites, as well as prepare a complete tourist product before any promotion of Šibenik-Knin County as a cycling destination.”Šibenik-Knin County is the first coastal county to adopt an operational plan for the development of cycling tourism”, Said Mirela Srkoč Šenkinc from CikloProm, who drafted the OP, emphasizing that cyclotourism is one of the segments in which to invest systematically.All signatories of the Agreement were involved in the development of the Operational Plan, namely the Public Institution Development Agency of Šibenik-Knin County, Public Institution Nature of Šibenik-Knin County, Tourist Board of Šibenik-Knin County, 5 cities and 15 municipalities of Šibenik-Knin County, Ministry of Interior of affairs – Šibenik-Knin Police Department, Hrvatske ceste – Šibenik Technical Office, Šibenik-Knin County Road Administration and cycling clubs: Adrion Oros, Fortica, Kamenar, Faust Vrančić, Primošten, Krka, Petar Svačić and Mountain Bike Club The Eagle Circle.last_img read more