The Virginia attorney general’s office has offered to help put Anthony O. Price on a fast track to the Supreme Court of Virginia in his attack on the constitutionality of the state’s civil remedial fees.
Esther Windmueller, who is representing Price along with Craig S. Cooley in Henrico County courts, said the AG’s office told her it would agree to an interlocutory appeal provided by Virginia Code § 8.01-670.1.
J. Tucker Martin, a spokesman for the AG’s office, said, “While the Henrico Circuit Court's decision is correct, we believe that it is imperative for the state Supreme Court to hear the case and affirm the Henrico court’s reasoning as soon as possible. To that end, we will support any effort by Price to expedite proceedings.”
Windmueller said she is not inclined to accept the offer because she wants to raise issues in addition to the equal protection argument that Circuit Judge L.A. Harris Jr. rejected on Monday. She also questioned whether the civil procedure statute applies to a law with both civil and criminal aspects.
On another front in the civil remedial fees war, you may be wondering about the authority for Mary Elizabeth Minter to be the “virtual representative” for anyone who faces the fees, as Roanoke attorney John P. Fishwick Jr. is requesting in Roanoke Circuit Court.
Fishwick says he is relying on the concept that plaintiffs in equity can sue for themselves and others similarly situated as outlined in § 5.18 [D] of the 2003 edition of Sinclair and Middleditch’s treatise on Virginia Civil Procedure. U.S. District Judge James P. Jones mentions the concept favorably in dictum in Indian Creek Monument Sales v. Adkins (VLW 004-3-038).