Tag Archives: Fennemore Craig

mediator

2012 Mediation Guide

Arizona Business Magazine used its own research and referenced professional ratings and rankings of law professionals to determine the legal professionals who made the 2012 Mediation Guide. Arizona Business Magazine has used its best efforts in assembling material for this list, but does not warrant that the information contained herein is a complete or exhaustive list of the top alternative dispute resolution attorneys in Arizona, and hereby disclaims any liability to any person for any loss or damage caused by errors or omissions herein.

All attorneys are listed in alphabetical order.

AMY ABDO
Fennemore Craig
3003 N. Central Ave., #2600, Phoenix, AZ 85012-2913
602-916-5399
fclaw.com
Abdo has extensive experience in arbitration, mediation, investigations, administrative proceedings and litigation, including bench and jury trials.

KEVIN T. AHERN
Broening Oberg Woods & Wilson, P.C.
1122 E. Jefferson St., Phoenix, AZ 85034
602-271-7781
bowwlaw.com
Ahern’s practice is confined to mediations, neutral case evaluations, arbitrations, special master appointments and consultation in his areas of practice experience — real estate, commercial enterprises, title insurers, escrow agencies, insurance agencies, lenders, and property managers.

SHAWN K. AIKEN
Aiken Schenk Hawkins & Ricciardi
4742 N. 24th St., Phoenix, AZ 85016
602-248-8203
ashrlaw.com
Aiken devotes a substantial portion of his practice to mediation and arbitration, and was selected by Best Lawyers in America as Lawyer of the Year, 2012 (Mediation, Phoenix).

REBECCA ALBRECHT
Bowman and Brooke, LLP
2901 N. Central Ave., #1600, Phoenix, AZ 85012
602-643-2300
bowmanandbrooke.com
A former Superior Court judge, Albrecht incorporates her vast experience and skills to her practice, which includes arbitration and mediation. Albrecht is an American Arbitration Association (AAA) certified arbitrator.

GERALD W. ALSTON, FREDERICK M. CUMMINS, DOUGLAS G. ZIMMERMAN
Jennings, Strouss & Salmon
1 E. Washington St., #1900, Phoenix, AZ 85004-2554
602-262-5911
jsslaw.com
Alston serves as both an arbitrator and a mediator in all areas of civil litigation, including domestic relations, eminent domain, and matters involving real estate and contract disputes. Cummins has extensive trial experience in the areas of health care and is an experienced arbitrator and mediator. Zimmerman is a certified mediator by The Institute for Conflict Management, LLC and completed the Advanced Negotiation Skills Program at the Harvard Law School Negotiation Insight Initiative.

CHRISTIAN C.M. BEAMS
Ryley Carlock & Applewhite
One N. Central Ave., #1200, Phoenix, AZ 85004-4417
602-258-7701
rcalaw.com
Beams is an accomplished neutral who has resolved countless disputes through the mediation and arbitration processes. He is diligent in his efforts to bring matters to resolution, as evidenced by his high success rate in doing so.

MAUREEN BEYERS
Osborn Maledon, P.A.
2929 N. Central Ave., Phoenix, AZ 85012
602-640-9305
omlaw.com
Beyers has served as an arbitrator and a mediator in hundreds of arbitrations on a variety of business disputes, and is a member of the American Arbitration Association’s specialized panels, including its Large and Complex Case Panel, and Franchise, Securities and Real Estate Panels.

STEVEN N. BERGER, DAVID. W. ENGELMAN
Engelman Berger, P.C.
3636 N. Central Ave., Phoenix, AZ 85012
602-271-9090
engelmanberger.com
Berger and Engelman offer the facilitation of the resolution of disputes through practical and cost-effective mediation. Berger concentrates his practice on assisting business owners, lenders, lessors, and other parties in resolving commercial disputes, with an emphasis on matters pending in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court or involving troubled loans or troubled businesses.

GARY L. BIRNBAUM, RICHARD A. FRIELANDER, AND MICHAEL S. RUBIN
Mariscal, Weeks, McIntyre & Friedlander
2901 N. Central Ave., #200, Phoenix, AZ 85012
602-285-5000
mwmf.com
Five of the fi rm’s senior lawyers are actively and continuously involved in alternative dispute resolution, including acting as arbitrators, mediators and neutral case evaluators in Arizona and throughout the Southwest.

DENISE M. BLOMMEL
7272 E. Indian School Rd., #206, Scottsdale, AZ 85251
480-425-7272
azlaborlaw.com
Blommel has more than 28 years of experience as an employment and labor law attorney, 15 years as a practicing mediator, including seven years serving as a contract mediator for the U.S. Postal Service.

BONNIE L. BOODEN
101 N. First Ave., #2080, Phoenix, AZ 85003
602-252-4880
bonnieboodenlaw.com
Booden offers mediation as another means to resolve the issues that arise out of the dissolution of a marriage.

BRICE BUEHLER
212 E. Bethany Home Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85012-1229
602-234-1212
bricebuehler.com
Since 1987, Buehler has mediated or arbitrated more than 2,500 disputes. Buehler’s experience includes corporate, commercial, partnership, bodily injury and wrongful death, professional (medical, dental, and legal) malpractice, construction, environmental, and probate disputes.

JOHN R. DACEY, MICHAEL R. KING, RICHARD K. MAHRLE
Gammage & Burnham
2 N. Central Ave., 15th Floor, Phoenix, AZ 85004
602-256-0566
gblaw.com
As part of Gammage & Burnham’s practice, several attorneys are available to serve as mediators or arbitrators in employment, construction, general, commercial and other litigation matters.

DAVID J. DAMRON
2415 E. Camelback Rd., #700, Phoenix, AZ 85016
602-476-1836
damronadr.com
Damron specializes in alternative dispute resolution including mediation, settlement conferences and arbitration.

FRANKLIN D. “TROY” DODGE
Ryan Rapp & Underwood
3200 N. Central Ave., #1600, Phoenix, AZ 85012
602-280-1000
rrulaw.com
Dodge’s practice has an emphasis in the area of commercial contract and real estate, and arbitration and mediation.

PAUL F. ECKSTEIN
Perkins Coie
2901 N. Central Ave., #2000, Phoenix, AZ 85012-2788
602-351-8000
perkinscoie.com
Eckstein’s practice is focused on civil litigation and he also frequently serves as a mediator and arbitrator.

MICHELE M. FEENEY
6525 N. Central, Ave., Phoenix, AZ 85012
602-682-7513
mmflaw.com
Devoting her practice to mediation, arbitration and alternative dispute resolution, Feeney has litigated cases in the areas of medical malpractice, wrongful death, personal injury and other tort litigation.

LAWRENCE H. FLEISCHMAN
The Fleischman Law Firm
2850 N. Swan Rd., #120, Tucson, AZ 85712
520-326-6400
fladr.com
Fleischman created the fi rst Center for Dispute Resolution in the Arizona Superior Court system, saving litigants and taxpayers millions of dollars each year. To date, he has mediated more than 6,000 cases for clients.

SHERMAN D. FOGEL
2850 E. Camelback Rd., #200, Phoenix, AZ 85016
602-264-3330
shermanfogel.com
Fogel is a full-service conflict management and dispute resolution professional, providing mediation, arbitration and facilitation services.

RICHARD N. GOLDSMITH
Lewis and Roca
40 N. Central Ave., #1900, Phoenix, AZ 85004
602-262-5341
lrlaw.com
Goldsmith mediates commercial disputes and has extensive experience handling matters related to Articles 2 and 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code, commercial and real estate lending and leasing, and loan documentation.

BRIAN MICHAEL GOODWIN
Polsinelli Shughart
1 E. Washington St., #1200, Phoenix, AZ 85004
602-650-2001
polsinelli.com
Goodwin is a professionally trained mediator and served as a judge pro tempore with the Maricopa County Superior Court from 1982-2005.

ALONA GOTTFRIED, JARED SIMMONS
Simmons & Gottfried, PLLC
8160 E. Butherus Dr., #7, Scottsdale, AZ 85260
480-998-1500
sglawaz.com
Specialties include family matters, commercial and business issues, employment disputes, and real estate matters.

J. ALEX GRIMSLEY
Bryan Cave LLP
2 N. Central Ave., #2200, Phoenix, AZ 85004-4406
602-364-7117
bryancave.com
Grimsley has represented a variety of domestic and foreign companies in international arbitrations.

STEVEN S. GUY, REBECCA A. WINTERSCHEIDT
Snell & Willmer
400 E. Van Buren St., #1900, Phoenix, AZ 85004-2202
602-382-6000
swlaw.com
Guy’s practice includes mediation and arbitration of litigated disputes. Winterscheidt serves as an arbitrator of employment disputes for the American Arbitration Association.

WILLIAM HAUG, CHAD SCHEXNAYDER
Jennings, Haug & Cunningham
2800 N. Central Ave., #1800, Phoenix, AZ 85004
602-234-7800
jhc-law.com
ADR attorneys at Jennings, Haug & Cunningham represent businesses, agencies and individuals involved in business disputes.

MICHAEL W. HERZOG
The Herzog Law Firm, P.C.
14350 N. 87th St., #180, Scottsdale, AZ 85260
480-264-0842
herzogfirm.com
Herzog is a certified specialist in injury and wrongful death litigation and his practice includes arbitration and mediation.

MARC KALISH
3219 E. Camelback Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85018
602-956-3608
arizonamediator.com
Since receiving formal mediation training in 1995, Kalish has devoted his law practice almost exclusively to providing alternative dispute resolution services as both an arbitrator and mediator.

MARK E. LASSITER
Davis Miles
80 E. Rio Salado Pkwy., #401, Tempe, AZ 85281
480-733-6800
Lassiter has an “AV Preeminent” rating by the Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings system, which connotes the highest possible rating in both legal ability and ethical standards and is head of dispute resolution department.

AMY L. LIEBERMAN, DONNA WILLIAMS
Insight Employment Mediation
8149 N. 87th Pl., Scottsdale, AZ 85258
480-246-3366
insightemployment.com
Lieberman’s practice is focused on the prevention and resolution of workplace and business conflict. She mediates primarily employment and commercial matters.

MERTON E. MARKS
2575 E. Camelback Road, #450, Phoenix, AZ 85016
480-544-4324
mertonemarks.com
Marks is a nationally known arbitrator and mediator of commercial disputes involving insurance, reinsurance, securities and product liability. He is an arbitrator for the AAA on its commercial, reinsurance and large complex case panels and is a mediator on the AAA mediation panel.

BRUCE E. MEYERSON
LaSota & Peters
722 E. Osborn Rd., #100, Phoenix, AZ 85014
602-248-2900
lasotapeters.com
Meyerson is a mediator, arbitrator, and trainer. From 1990 through 2000, Meyerson practiced commercial and employment litigation with Meyer, Hendricks, Victor, Osborn & Maledon, and Steptoe & Johnson.

ROBERT J. MILLIGAN
Milligan Lawless Taylor Murphy & Bailey, P.C.
4647 N. 32nd St., #185, Phoenix, AZ 85018
602-792-3500
mltmblaw.com
Milligan specializes in health care law and mediation of litigated cases and pre-litigation disputes.

LEAH PALLIN-HILL
Mediation and Arbitration Services, PLLC
2375 E. Camelback Rd., #500, Phoenix, AZ 85016-3489
602-387-5323
leahpallinhill.com
Pallin-Hill offers ADR for general civil matters, including commercial disputes, construction, condemnation, employment, family, malpractice, elder abuse/nursing homes, personal injury, probate, and real estate.

DAVID W. REES
4771 E. Camp Lowell Dr., Tucson, AZ 85712
520-327-7775
thereeslawfirm.com
Rees offers services as a mediator, services as an arbitrator or represents individuals who wish to have matters resolved through means other than a civil trial.

SUSAN M. ROBBINS
Cooley & Robbins, LLC
10211 W. Thunderbird Blvd., #201, Sun City, AZ 85351
623-977-1900
azprobatelaw.com
Robbins is a member of the State Bar Alternative Dispute Resolution Section and is also a member of the Association for Conflict Resolution. She is active in the area of mediation and disputes and contested matter in elder law.

DAVID L. ROSE, SHARON B. SHIVELY, DAVID C. TIERNEY
Sacks Tierney
4250 N. Drinkwater Blvd., 4th Floor, Scottsdale, AZ 85251-3693
480-425-2600
sackstierney.com
In addition to serving on some of the AAA’s most sought-after arbitration panels, Sacks Tierney attorneys regularly appear as advocates in arbitrations (or mediations) under AAA rules, or in State Court arbitrations convened under an arbitration agreement.

ROBERT A. ROYAL
Tiffany & Bosco
2525 E. Camelback Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85016-9240
602-255-6011
tblaw.com
Royal’s practice emphasizes intra-corporate dispute and director, officer and manager liability issues.

IRA M. SCHWARTZ
DeConcini McDonald Yetwin & Lacy, P.C.
7310 N. 16th St., #330, Phoenix, AZ 85020
602-282-0500
deconcinimcdonald.com
Schwartz actively serves as a mediator and arbitrator of intellectual property disputes.

STEPHEN H. SCOTT, CHRISTOPHER M. SKELLY
Scott & Skelly
1313 E. Osborn Rd., #120, Phoenix, AZ 85014
602-277-8228
scottandskelly.com
Scott is a former judge on the Arizona Superior Court who now serves full-time as a mediator, arbitrator, appraisal umpire and discovery master. Skelly has conducted thousands of mediations in virtually every kind of civil case.

BRIAN E. SMITH
Brian Smith Mediation & Arbitration
550 W. Baseline Rd., #102-240, Mesa, AZ 85210
480-507-8895
bsmed-arb.com
Brian has established himself as a proven mediator, adept at impartially assisting and guiding parties to effectively facilitate their self-determined mutual decision making which is the cornerstone of the mediation process.

THOMAS L. TOONE
Beer & Toone, P.C.
76 E. Mitchell Dr., Phoenix, AZ 85012-2330
602-263-0900
beer-toone.com
Toone has served as settlement judge, arbitrator or mediator in more than 2,100 cases in Maricopa County.

MARK D. ZUKOWSKI
Jones, Skelton and Hochuli, P.L.C.
2901 N. Central Ave., #800, Phoenix, AZ 85012
602-263-1759
jshfirm.com
Zukowski is a construction and commercial arbitrator and mediator for the AAA. Mark also serves as a private arbitrator and mediator and as a settlement conference Judge Pro Tem for the Maricopa County Superior Court.

Arizona Business Magazine March/April 2012

gavel

Arizona’s Top Lawyers 2012 – Securities & Corporate Finance – Tax

Arizona Business Magazine used its own research, solicited input from legal experts, and referenced professional ratings and rankings to determine the legal professionals who made the 2012 Top Lawyers list.


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Categories

Banking Healthcare
Business/Corporate Law Intellectual Property
Construction Litigation Mergers and Acquisitions
Employment/Labor
Relations
Real Estate
Environmental Law Securities and Corporate Finance
Estate and Trust Litigation Tax

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SECURITIES AND CORPORATE FINANCE

Bryant D. Barber ◆ Lewis and Roca LLP
602-262-5375 ◆ lrlaw.com
Barber has extensive experience in municipal finance, including related areas of state and federal securities and tax law, and economic development financing programs.

James E. Brophy, III ◆ Ryley Carlock & Applewhite, P.C.
602-440-4807 ◆ rcalaw.com
Brophy’s practice focuses on securities, business transactions and employee benefits law.

Jon S. Cohen ◆ Snell & Wilmer L.L.P.
602-382-6247 ◆ swlaw.com
Cohen has a corporate finance practice, including a large number of public offerings, and mergers and acquisitions.

Thomas H. Curzon ◆ Osborn Maledon PA
602-640-9308 ◆ omlaw.com
Curzon’s practice focuses primarily on entrepreneurial transactions, including venture capital and other private placements of securities, mergers, acquisitions and divestitures, and initial public offerings.

Steven P. Emerick ◆ Quarles & Brady LLP
602-230-5517 ◆ quarles.com
Emerick’s practice is focused on corporate finance, securities and business transactions for companies in a broad range of industries.

Martin R Galbut ◆ Galbut & Galbut, P.C.
602-955-1455 ◆ galbutlaw.com
Galbut has been selected to The Best Lawyers in America for Securities Law (2007 – 2010) and Business/Commercial Litigation (2001-2009).

Robert J. Hackett ◆ Ridenour, Hienton & Lewis, PLLC
602-254-9900 ◆ rhkl-law.com
Hackett’s practice focuses in the areas of corporate, securities and banking law, including public offerings, private placements, mergers and acquisitions and corporate finance.

Robert S. Kant ◆ Greenberg Traurig, LLP
602-445-8302 ◆ gtlaw.com
Kant has represented large and small issuers of equity and debt securities in hundreds of securities transactions involving the sale of more than $20 billion of securities.

David P. Lewis ◆ DLA Piper LLP
480-606-5126 ◆ dlapiper.com
Lewis focuses his practice in the area of corporate and securities law, including mergers and acquisitions, securities offerings and compliance issues.

Julie Rystad ◆ Gallagher & Kennedy, P.A.
602-530-8070 ◆ gknet.com
Rystad advises financial institutions and business entities in various types of financial transactions, including asset-based, equipment, and real estate loans and leases, and warehouse lending.


TAX

James Benham ◆ Moore Benham & Beaver PLC
602-254-6044 ◆ mbmblaw.com
Benham practices individual, corporate and partnership taxation law, tax controversy, estate preservation and probate; formation, operation and reorganization of corporations, partnerships and limited liability companies.

Timothy D. Brown ◆ Gallagher & Kennedy, P.A.
602-530-8530 ◆ gknet.com
Brown practices in all areas of federal tax law, with an emphasis on real estate, partnerships, limited liability companies, corporations, real estate, international taxation, and civil tax controversy.

John F. Daniels, III ◆ Fennemore Craig PC
602-916-5431 ◆ fclaw.com
Daniels chairs the Tax and Tax Controversy practice groups at Fennemore Craig.

Pat Derdenger ◆ Steptoe & Johnson
602-257-5209 ◆ steptoe.com
Derdenger’s practice emphasizes federal, state, and local taxation law. He is certified as a tax law specialist by the Arizona State Bar.

James R. Hienton ◆ Ridenour, Hienton & Lewis, PLLC
602-254-9900 ◆ rhkl-law.com
As a certified tax specialist of the Arizona State Bar Association, Hienton works to structure business transactions in a most tax-effective manner.

Kirk A. McCarville ◆ Kirk A. McCarville PC
602-468-1714 ◆ mccarvillelaw.com
McCarville practices nationwide, engaging in civil and criminal law principally in the area of taxation.

Thomas J. Morgan ◆ Lewis and Roca LLP
602-262-5712 ◆ lrlaw.com
Morgan practices in the areas of securities, corporate and tax law with emphasis in public and private securities offerings, and general tax planning.

Martha C. Patrick ◆ Burch & Cracchiolo, P.A.
602-234-9939 ◆ bcattorneys.com
Coming from the IRS, Patrick represents taxpayers involved in civil and criminal tax controversies before the Internal Revenue Service and the Arizona Department of Revenue.

Lawrence Pew ◆ Pew Law Center
480-745-1770 ◆ pewlaw.com
Pew is an experienced tax, bankruptcy, and transactional attorney.

Les Raatz ◆ Mariscal Weeks Mclntyre & Friedlander, P.A.
602-285-5022 ◆ mwmf.com
Raatz has extensive experience in a broad range of tax, probate and trust matters, including estate planning, audits and litigation, and corporate, trust, exempt organizations, real estate, and partnership and limited liability company taxation.

Arizona Business Magazine has used its best efforts in assembling material for this list, but does not warrant that the information contained herein is a complete or exhaustive list of the top lawyers in Arizona, and hereby disclaims any liability to any person for any loss or damage caused by errors or omissions herein.

Arizona Business Magazine March/April 2012

2012 Valley Partnership Roundtable

2012 Valley Partnership Roundtable

The 2012 Valley Partnership Roundtable discusses the need to engage and monitor federal issues impacting the development community, which is greater than ever. 

Every real estate development company actively manages issues such as water quality, dust control and industry taxation/regulation at the city and state level. However, we must be more vigilant in watching the impact of federal regulation on the real estate industry. Decisions made by the federal agencies and our Congressional delegation have a  long-term impact on our businesses.

As a sector, we have a responsibility to advocate for fair and pragmatic regulation that allows the industry to be nimble and grow responsibly. Federal regulation and oversight have expanded over the past few years and some of these expansions in oversight could negatively impact Arizona businesses. Arizona’s climate, employment bases and natural resources pose unique challenges on the federal level, and we must ensure that our delegation is prepared to fight for our state’s future.

As it celebrates its 25th anniversary, Valley Partnership, in conjunction with AZRE magazine, convened a virtual roundtable discussion on the need to engage and monitor federal and state issues that impact the development community. They include:

  • Expansion of the Clean Water Act;
  • Business taxes/workforce training credits/research and development tax credits
  • Military installations, including Luke Air Force Base;
  • Solar incentives;
  • Aerospace/defense industry, research.

Participants are members of Valley Partnership’s federal and legislative committees, including: Rob Anderson (RA), Fennemore Craig; Paul Hickman (PH), Arizona Bankers Association; Charley Freericks (CF), DMB Associates, Inc.; Rusty Mitchell (RM), Luke AFB; Mary Peters (MP), consultant, former secretary, U.S. Department of Transportation; Grady Gammage JR. (GG), Gammage & Burnham; and Michelle de Blasi (MD), Quarles & Brady.

– Karrin Taylor, DMB Associates Inc.

Q: The federal government’s growing regulation of water, environment issues and endangered species has an immediate effect on private property owners and at the state and local levels. In the Western U.S., there can be tremendous unintended consequences to these one-size-fits-all regulations promulgated in Washington. What are the risks and/or potential impacts for the development community?

GG: There are huge risks for Arizona development in ignoring federal issues. We tend to either rail at the Feds, or just hope they’ll go away. The truth is, neither attitude is useful. We need our federal representatives to vigorously engage in explaining things that seem obvious to us: like dry desert washes not being navigable, or the fact that Arizona tends to be dusty. But we need to recognize that there is an appropriate federal role in environmental regulation, rather than behave as though the EPA will go away.

RA: The risks for the development community are three-fold: Increased compliance costs; increased uncertainties associated with securing federal approval (Well will I get my permit? What will my project look like when I do?); and the possibility that the federal requirements will actually block you from developing at all. The first two risks are fairly pervasive in the development world already. The third risk is relatively rare but increasing, particularly in the area of endangered species where there is tremendous pressure to list more species and protect more habitats. We also may see more of this as the first two risks grow and become unmanageable. For example, if I do not know when I can get my permit, and do not know what my project will look like at the end of the permitting process, how can I get financing or raise capital to do the project at all?

Q: What can we (leaders in real estate) do to influence federal regulation and legislation?

MD: Consistency and certainty in policy is crucial to develop and sustain any industry. It is difficult to have certainty without having an energy policy in place. Some immediate initiatives that could provide certainty in the energy industry are: Build out/improve access to transmission; remove redundancy/inefficiencies in permitting; expand production-based incentives; and provide better/quicker access to federal land for project development.

GG: The real estate industry needs to come together with workable solutions on things like dust control of construction, and standards for developing in the desert that recognize circumstances where washes should be preserved or mass grading minimized. Constructive engagement means offering sensible alternatives for some federal involvement, that is climate and geography appropriate for the arid West. There’s a lot of of serious expertise in Arizona in dealing with these issues. The development industry will find that Arizona’s cities are valuable allies in understanding the nature of development here, and why it is different from many other parts of the country.

RA: Follow regulatory developments through agencies of concern (EPA, the Corps of Engineers) and follow legislation through Congress. Do not hesitate to contact your congressman or congresswoman on issues of concern. Be active in trade associations that lobby in Washington D.C.

CF: Real estate industry leaders and everyone in the community have many options for supporting Luke and the effort to secure the F-35 mission. First, participate in the Luke Forward campaign by registering your support (lukeforward.com), submit a letter from your company or community support organization, and spread the word by sending the link for Luke Forward to your colleagues and friends Second, participate in the upcoming public hearings for the F-35 mission Environmental Impact Study (EIS) process. Dates, times and locations will be posted on the website to visibly show your support to the community and government representatives. Finally, write or email your local, state and federal elected officials and state your support for the F-35 mission.

PH: Stay engaged. Coordinate multiple visit to members of Congress and agency officials. Be active on responding to requests for comments on proposed regultions. Create “echo chambers” on issues of vital importance to our state.

Our western state is rich in space, most of which is managed by some form of government (Fed/state/military/tribal). This requires our real estate development industry to engage in public/private partnerships. Our only alternative is not to grow our economy.

Q: There has been significant scrutiny on federal and state incentives of certain industries recently. How do you think those incentives have impacted the Arizona job and real estate markets? Are the incentives needed to jump-start an industry and spur growth? Are they worth the risks?

MP: I am generally opposed to public-funded incentives that tend to distort the market. If a determination is made that public interest is best served by advancing an issue, the better way to proceed is to focus on the desired outcome rather than a specific technology. In terms of developing alternative fuels for vehicles, for example, the outcome might be to reduce our dependence on foreign oil. Current policy provides public subsidies as an incentive to produce ethanol, and the subsidies are provided largely to mid-west, corn producing states. The process used by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) that encourages competition toward an outcome-based goal is far better than offering specific incentives. Arizona businesses and entrepreneurs could be very competitive in a DARPA-like competition resulting in more Arizona jobs and real estate development.

MD: Incentives are necessary to help spur growth and develop infrastructure that benefits society as a whole, but should be implemented in such a way that they reward success. The incentive provides the carrot, but should not provide the fuel as was the case with Solyndra. Incentives provide the necessary framework to foster economic development — job creation. Just as Arizona was feeling the effects of a downturn in the real estate market, the incentives available to the renewable energy industry helped spur the grow of a burgeoning industry for Arizona. As more projects have come to fruition, the economy has felt the impacts through the transitioning of jobs and the influx of investment in renewable generation and manufacturing. However, as an industry and state, one needs to be careful not to incentivize an industry that will not survive into the future without incentives.

Q: The debate around “earmarks” and “pork” projects continues at the federal level. Some of Arizona’s federal delegation have earned national reputations for their stand against earmarks. What are the benefits or the losses to Arizona on this issue? Should Arizona’s federal delegation work to bring federal dollars back to our community? What kinds of projects does Arizona need?

MP: When members of Congress designate special projects as part of authorizing or appropriation bills powerful committee chairs are able to direct disproportionate amounts of funding to their district or state regardless of the merits of the project. The so-called “Bride to Nowhere” in the 2005 Highway Bill is a prime example. I think, on the whole, Arizona and other states lose in this process, and our delegation is right to take a stand against earmarks. A better way is for Congress to give the states their proportionate share of funding, and let state and local officials working with our Congressional Delegation decide how and where the funds should be spent. Arizona could then use those funds to build transportation in infrastructure to support high-growth areas, such as the north-sout corridor in Pinal County.

GG: We couldn’t live in Central Arizona without federal projects. Both SRP and CAP are examples of using the Treasury of the Unites States to make it possible to live in the arid West. Sky Harbor Airport and the interstate highway system are other examples. We should not oppose the use of federal dollars for these kinds of purposes. The evil of “earmarks” is when ad hoc projects (I think “Bride to Nowhere”) are slipped into unrelated bills without any debate or being part of a comprehensive program. Our senators and congressmen shouldn’t oppose the use of federal funds for worthy projects in Arizona. They should oppose a process that disguises federal spending, that doesn’t invite public scrutiny, or that trades frivolous projects in one district for similar boondoggles elsewhere.

PH: We expect our members of Congress to fight for parochial projects that make sense. What some members of our congressional delegation object to — properly in my view — is skirting the competitive process to do that. The losses incurred by the practice of earmarking redound to us as federal taxpayers, not necessarily Arizonans. When we engage in it we may win projects for our state, but as federal taxpayers we probably paid too much inferior projects or products.

We should be working with out congressional delegation as well as the applicable federal agencies to get out projects included into the agency budgets, authorized by the congressional authorization committees and approved by the members of the appropriations committees. We also need to partner with the global growth sectors of our economy: healthcare, energy, aerospace, and high-tech manufacturing. If this crash of 2008 has taught us anything it is that the residential housing industry can’t drive an economy by itself. It has to have other sectors to support or it collapses.

Q: The Arizona Commerce Authority and local economic development groups such as GPEC have prioritized a number of industries for expansion and growth. Aerospace/defense, technology and the solar industry seem to be major opportunities for Arizona’s future. What role should leaders of the real estate development industry play at the federal level in working to support these business expansion efforts?

MP: The ACA has defined aerospace/defense, solar/renewable energy, science and technology, and Arizona innovation-small businesses and entrepreneurs as our four focus areas. The areas provide the biggest opportunity to attract and retain high paying jobs and sustainable economic development for our state. The real estate development community can help support these focus areas by working together with organizations like ACA and GPEC to let out congressional delegation know when we are competing for federal funds and programs. An example is the funding now available under the Defense Appropriations Act in which the FAA will select sites for testing UAVs. The real estate development community can also assist in redeveloping areas such as the Williams Gateway and in ensuring that growth complements, but does not encroach on, our current military installations such as Luke AFB.

MD: The message has to be clear and provide certainty for foster meaningful industry growth. For the energy sector, the growth plan needs to be inclusive of a portfolio of energy resources. The support for renewable energy at the federal level needs to be based on a broad array of goals: jobs, diversity of energy sources, national security and economic development. The industry leaders should be advocating for production-based or back-end incentives where there are metrics requiring a certain level of project development to better ensure the long-term success of the industry.

Q: Arizona has long enjoyed the benefits of having major military installations, such as Luke Air Force Base, as part of our economic base. These installations create and sustain thousands of jobs and billions of dollars in economic impact. What are the potential risks and rewards with selection of Arizona for the F-35 mission?

CF: The rewards are numerous — thousands of highly trained, educated and well-paid employees continue to thrive in the West Valley; billions of dollars in annual economic impact continue to flow into Arizona’s economy; and the community around Luke is bolstered by the consumption of goods and services from this amazing economic engine and the positive community contributions from the people of Luke. The mission for this advanced aircraft will sustain Luke for decades to come.

The risks as minimal, but important to keep in context. The military is subject to the ebbs and flows of federal military investment and resting after securing the F-35 mission would be a critical error. The state, especially those communities closest to Luke, have grown accustomed to, even dependent on, having Luke as a major employer and economic driver. As the West Valley continues to grow and evolve, it is critical to keep the economic development focus on highly-educated, high-income employment and to continue diversifying the number and types of industries represented. The risk of reductions in Luke’s mission are always a factor to be considered; and, the best solution will be a strong and diverse regional economy.

RM: If Luke AFB is selected as the second PTC, it is conceivable that it would remain a valuable national asset and an incomparable economic engine for decades to come.

The most recent study (commissioned by the state of Arizona) of Luke’s economic impact was approximately $2.17B. However,  beyond the pure dollars involved, the men and women of Luke AFB are significant contributors to the surrounding community as school and church leaders, business participants as well as stable homeowners for the community. These men and women should be viewed not only as part of the economic engine, but equally as important, quality community participants and leaders.

For more information on Valley Partnership visit, valleypartnership.org

AZRE Magazine March/April 2012

Nonexempt Vs. Exempt Employees

Exempt Employees Versus Nonexempt Employees

Classifying employees as exempt or nonexempt might seem easy at first glance.  Either they are salaried or they are hourly.  Accordingly, they either are eligible to earn overtime for hours worked or they are not.

But it’s not that simple. Nor are the penalties a business can face. Complaints can be made against a business up to two years after an alleged misclassification and resulting lost wages.

Compliance is Key

Such allegations can prove costly, especially if tension in the workplace escalates between the accuser and the business to the level of what could be considered discrimination or harassment. In fact, the U.S. Department of Labor Website’s compliance section states:

“It is a violation to fire or in any other manner discriminate against an employee for filing a complaint or for participating in a legal proceeding under the FLSA.

“Willful violations may be prosecuted criminally and the violator fined up to $10,000. A second conviction may result in imprisonment.”

In addition, any employer found to have willfully violated employee rights, whether exempt or nonexempt from the guidelines outlined in the FLSA, “may be prosecuted criminally and fined up to $10,000,” DOL documents state. “A second conviction may result in imprisonment. Employers who willfully or repeatedly violate the minimum wage or overtime pay requirements are subject to civil money penalties of up to $1,100 per violation.”

When Wage and Hour investigators uncover violations, the DOL will often work with that employers to help them become compliant. In addition, they will be required to pay any back wages that may be due to employees.

Two-Part Test

So what is the standard by which an exempt and nonexempt employee can be measured, and what rules apply to each classification? To be considered exempt, a salaried employee must meet specific salary and duty requirements.

An employee, who is salaried who earns less than $455 per week would be nonexempt and therefore eligible for overtime and other protections under the FLSA.  An exempt employee would not be eligible for overtime, but with limited exceptions, must receive their full salary for any week during which they work, Compensation Management News reports. For more information, visit Compensation.BLR.com.

The second portion of the test relates to the duties an employee performs, their job category such as administrative, computer specialists, outside sales and more. For specific exemptions, see the accompanying chart or visit the DOL Website. In some cases, as with computer specialists, otherwise exempt employees may be paid hourly instead as long as they earn $27.63 or more per hour.

Managing Expectations

In Arizona, there is no legal definition for exempt and nonexempt employees. Everybody is entitled to a minimum wage. However, Arizona does have its own unique minimum wage law. Arizona’s minimum wage is $7.35 per hour and federal minimum wage is $7.25.

While exempt employees are generally not eligible for overtime, they reap other benefits.

“If a person works part of a day and then leaves, you cannot dock them if they are exempt,” explained John Balitis, an employment and labor attorney with Fennemore Craig. “The caveat is that you can dock a salaried, exempt employee’s leave days, so long as it does not result in a loss of compensation during the pay period in which the docking occurs. So, the docking rule for partial day absences is different, depending on whether you are talking about pay or leave.”

Paul W. Barada, a salary and negotiation expert for Monster, agrees. “Exempt employees are generally expected to devote the number of hours necessary to complete their respective tasks, regardless of whether that requires 35 hours per week or 55 hours per week. Their compensation doesn’t change based on actual hours expended. Exempt employees aren’t paid extra for putting in more than 40 hours per week; they’re paid for getting the job done,” Barada wrote in a career advice article published on Monster.com.

If not hours, what then, constitutes an exempt employee’s fulfillment of having completed a day’s work?

“This is an interesting issue that judges and lawyers are talking about, but there is no clear answer,” Balitis said. “Given the proliferation of smart phones and employees checking their email, voice mail and texts while they are at home or in the car on the way to work, there is case law that says that becomes compensable time—so the day has started and exempt/salaried employees have to be paid.”

Balitis said employers, regardless of size, would be well-advised to to purchase a multi-law comprehensive poster for the workplace. If purchased as a subscription from a service, he said, companies generally send updated posters when any of the requirements change.

Commonly Used Exemptions

Commissioned sales employees of retail or service establishments are exempt from overtime if more than half of the employee’s earnings come from commissions and the employee averages at least one and one-half times the minimum wage for each hour worked. You may also wish to review the applicable regulation.

Computer professionals: Section 13(a)(17) of the FLSA provides that certain computer professionals paid at least $27.63 per hour are exempt from the overtime provisions of the FLSA.

Drivers, driver’s helpers, loaders and mechanics are exempt from the overtime pay provisions of the FLSA if employed by a motor carrier, and if the employee’s duties affect the safety of operation of the vehicles in transportation of passengers or property in interstate or foreign commerce. You may also wish to review the applicable regulation.

Farmworkers employed on small farms are exempt from both the minimum wage and overtime pay provisions of the FLSA. You may also wish to review the specific regulation.

Young workers employed on small farms, with parental consent, are also exempt from the child labor provisions of the FLSA. For more information on exemptions from the child labor provisions of the FLSA in agriculture, click the underlined text. Other farmworkers are exempt from the FLSA’s overtime provisions. You may also wish to review the specific regulation.

Salesmen, partsmen and mechanics employed by automobile dealerships are exempt from the overtime pay provisions of the FLSA. You may also wish to review the applicable regulation.

Seasonal and recreational establishments: Employees employed by certain seasonal and recreational establishments are exempt from both the minimum wage and overtime pay provisions of the FLSA. You may also wish to review the applicable regulation.

Executive, administrative, professional and outside sales employees: (as defined in Department of Labor regulations) and who are paid on a salary basis are exempt from both the minimum wage and overtime provisions of the FLSA.

For more information about commonly used exemptions, visit www.dol.gov.

Source: US Department of Labor elaws – Fair Labor Standards Act Advisor

[stextbox id=”grey”]Learn more about nonexempt vs. exempt employees at Compensation.BLR.com.[/stextbox]

 

Fennemore Craig lawyers, AZ Business Magazine September/October 2011

Centennial Series: Fennemore Craig Continues Legal Legacy

Fennemore Craig, founded in 1885, has helped shape the legal landscape of Arizona and its economy for more than a century. Founded more than a quarter-century before Arizona attained statehood, the firm has both helped the state grow and grown within the state.

What started as a frontier town law office has grown to more than 180 attorneys concentrated in Phoenix, Tucson, Denver, Las Vegas, and Nogales, with 440 total employees firm-wide. In the beginning, it was known as Sloan & Chalmers at what is now First Avenue and Washington Street in Phoenix. Even then, long before moving into swanky downtown offices, the law firm was contributing to the quality of life for Arizonans.

A Fennemore Craig spokesperson identified some significant milestones from the past 100 years:

1. In 1910, Edward Kent, who served on the Arizona Territorial Supreme Court and later became a firm partner, authored the Kent’s Decree. It established and governed water rights in Arizona for decades. The decree is still referred to today. The firm also authored the Arizona Workmen’s Compensation Act and Arizona Sales Tax Act in 1912.

2. In 1927, the firm helped organize the State Bar.

3. From 1954-1962, Fennemore Craig partner Cal Udall was a member of the legal team that represented Arizona in its battle with California for control of Colorado River water. Fennemore Craig’s efforts here spurred development of Arizona’s major cities.

4.  The Arizona Groundwater Management Act. Jim Johnson, a Fennemore Craig water, natural resources and environmental lawyer, was a principal negotiator and draftsman of the 1980 Arizona Groundwater Management Act. As special counsel to the state’s newly created Arizona Department of Water Resources, he successfully defended  the Act’s constitutionality. The Act marked a critical benchmark in Arizona’s efforts to manage and preserve its groundwater. It established comprehensive and effective approaches to groundwater management and allocation.

5.  Arizona Telecommunications Deregulation, 1995-96. Tim Berg and Theresa Dwyer-Federhar, Fennemore Craig utilities and appellate lawyers, served as Arizona  primary outside counsel to US West, the predecessor to Qwest, now CenturyLink, when Congress mandated telecommunications deregulation with the Federal Telecommunications Act of 1996. They represented US West, which had commenced working with other communications companies and stakeholders and the Arizona Corporation Commission on telecommunications deregulation issues in 1995. When Congress passed the Telecommunications Deregulation in 1996, a competitive telecommunications framework for residential and business customers emerged in Arizona that provided a regulatory regime for multiple providers, competitive pricing and use of a company’s infrastructure by other providers.

6.  Arizona Sports and Tourism Authority. Fennemore Craig lawyer Sarah Strunk, who practices in the area of business and finance, served as general counsel (and continues to do so) to the Arizona Sports and Tourism Authority in connection with the siting, development, construction, and ongoing operation and maintenance of University of Phoenix Stadium, home of the Arizona Cardinals and an anchor of Glendale’s sports complex. The development of University of Phoenix stadium, also home of the Fiesta Bowl and site of Super Bowl XLII, marked a shift in the economic landscape of the West Valley and Arizona sports.

Fennemore Craig, AZ Business Magazine September/October 2011

[stextbox id=”grey”]Fennemore Craig
3003 N. Central Ave., Ste. 2600
Phoenix, AZ 85012
(602) 916-5000
www.fclaw.com[/stextbox]

Arizona Business Magazine September/October 2011

State budget crisis - AZ Business Magazine July/August 2011

The State’s Budget Crisis Is Further Straining The Judiciary System

When talk turns to the state’s budget crisis, the discussion almost invariably focuses on the impact funding cuts will have on Arizona’s health and education systems. Among the general public, however, little to no thought is given to the effect budget cuts are having on the state’s judicial system.

“The state’s lack of resources promises to remain a challenge for several years,” says Timothy Berg, managing partner at Fennemore Craig. “However, it is important to remember that there are pronounced constitutional, social and economic dangers in rendering the Arizona court system ineffective by undue budget cuts.”

According the Arizona Judicial Branch, there were more than 2.6 million filings in Arizona courts in 2010.

“To make matters worse, the total number of persons working full-time in the Arizona judicial system decreased from 9,684 in 2009 to 9,379 in 2010 — a 3.1 percent decrease,” says David E. Funkhouser III, an associate at Quarles & Brady. “Thus, an already-strained judiciary is being forced to work more with less.”

As it is, the state’s judicial system receives just above 1 percent of the general budget, according to Don Bivens and Trish Refo, partners at Snell & Wilmer. Just a few years ago, Bivens says that allocation stood at 2.75 percent, a number still inadequate for the judicial branch’s needs.

“Funding state courts is a challenge all across America, as state courts face additional cuts to already inadequate budgets,” Refo adds. “Indeed, the situation is of such concern that American Bar Association President Steve Zack has formed a blue ribbon task force … to address the funding crisis in our state courts. State courts cannot fulfill their constitutional mandate to provide justice without adequate resources to do so.”

According to Snell & Wilmer, 80 percent of Arizona’s funding of the justice system goes to probation services. The remaining 20 percent is allocated across the supreme court, the appellate courts, and partial judicial salaries in local superior courts throughout the state. At least one county, Maricopa, is now shouldering the full burden for superior court salaries.

As Berg points out, cutting funding for the judicial branch will create an ineffective civil court system, which will have serious economic and social consequences on the state.

“Arizona’s judiciary is the arbiter of disputes involving government, corporations and individuals,” he says. “If businesses and entrepreneurs are unable to have their disputes resolved in a fair and timely manner, it is reasonable to expect that, over time, they will look to locate in other states.”

Thomas Irvine, a shareholder at Polsinelli Shughart, contends that the situation with civil cases will
likely become more dire as the court system continues to do more with less.

“Even with the 2012 opening of the new downtown criminal courthouse, we are out of courtrooms,” Irvine says. “Management miracles, as accomplished by the superior court in the last decade, cannot — without more — keep up with growth. There will be a need for more judges, staff and courthouses.”

In Maricopa County alone, Bivens of Snell & Wilmer says the clerk’s office has laid off 182 clerks. As a result, the court system is learning to work smarter.

“That loss of person power has accelerated the change over to electronic filing of court records, which, while causing commotion in the short term, will likely save millions in the future as the courts move from the laborious task of preserving mounds of paper for every court case, to filing and storing all court records digitally,” Bivens says.

Still, there’s no getting around the fact that funds for the judicial system are growing more and more scarce. To make up for the loss in tax revenue, fees for court filings have increased 44 percent during the last two years, according to Snell & Wilmer. Irvine of Polsinelli Shughart emphasizes that the funding cuts and fee increases are not just a problem for the legal community.

“Arizona business must take the lead in supporting adequate budgets and resources for the courts,” he says. “Justice, victims, our community and the low priority of business cases demands that this effort be made. Slowing down the dance of justice is out of the question.”

Arizona Business Magazine July/August 2011

Fennemore Craig has implemented a new way to communicate with its clients

Local Law Firm Enhances Attorney-Client Communication With Red Phone

Fennemore Craig, the oldest and one of the largest law firms in Arizona, has implemented a new way to communicate with its clients. The “Red Phone” is an iPod Touch in a red case that has pre-programmed information linked to a specific case and group of lawyers that translates case-related information between client and attorney.

Fennemore Craig Red PhoneHow does this increase communication? Clients are provided with the iPad or iPod Touches to send delicate attorney/client information through email, camera functions and Skype — a system that allows face-to-face interaction via video and voice communication. When a client needs to talk, a special number programmed into the phone calls all the attorneys linked to the case and one must answer at all times.

The Red Phone has already been assisting families incapacitated with seriously-injured loved ones who may be in a place with no Internet access or office setting with equipment such as a phone, fax machine or computer.

James Goodnow, an associate for Fennemore Craig, believes this new program will impact the practices’ relationship with its clients in a tremendous way.

“We want our clients to always have human communication,” says Goodnow. “The immediate response time has gotten positive reviews from the clients.”

The camera function allows clients to take case-relevant photos and send them immediately to their attorney.

Documents that pertain to the case can be sent with preloaded email addresses directly to the attorneys involved, and clients can review papers sent from the office.

Videos conferences are used to inform parties involved of the evidence retained.

“Instead of reading about our clients, the other lawyers will see them,” says Goodnow. “We can also show them how a case will be presented to a jury.”

It also allows attorneys to update the patient’s condition.

Fennemore Craig 2011

The phone costs nothing to clients. After the case has been resolved and there is no need for communication, the phones are returned to Fennemore.

Everyone with a case at Fennemore is eligible for the phone. iPads are given to those who are less tech savvy and don’t have internet access. Everyone else receives an iPod Touch.

The Fennemore Craig Law Firm was founded more than 110 years ago in Phoenix. The firm has over 120 attorneys with offices in Phoenix and Tucson. They are looking out for the best interest of their clients and know the Red Phone will enhance their abilities to do so.