Press & Journal Header

Mette, Evans & Woodside Represents Newspaper Publisher in Freedom of Speech and First Amendment Lawsuit

Press & Journal Header

The law firm of Mette, Evans & Woodside has settled a lawsuit filed on behalf of its client, Press and Journal, Inc., publisher of the Middletown Press & Journal, against the Borough of Middletown, Pennsylvania.

 

The suit alleged that the Borough violated the newspaper’s rights of free speech and press guaranteed by the First Amendment. The suit arose in 2018 when the Borough refused to place advertisements for publication with the paper because the Borough disagreed with the paper’s reporting and editorials. The Borough stated that it might resume a commercial relationship if the newspaper’s reporting changed.

 

U.S. District Court Chief Judge Christopher C. Conner entered a consent decree on March 25, 2019 requiring the Borough to follow published neutral criteria. The Borough also agreed to pay the paper’s legal fees for the matter.

 

Mette, Evans & Woodside attorneys Aaron D. Martin, Michael D. Reed and Veronica L. Boyer represented Press & Journal in the suit.

 

Paul J. Bruder Secures Victory for Hubley Township – Joint Sewage Facilities Plan Will Go Forward

The Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania has reversed a decision of the Environmental Hearing Board that nullified a Joint Act 537 plan between Hegins and Hubley townships.  The plan was the first comprehensive revision to either township’s Act 537 plans since 1967. In the joint plan, the townships proposed the construction of a 600,000-gallon-per-day wastewater treatment plant in Hubley Township. The plan also proposed the installation of public sewers in various sections of both townships where there has been on-lot septic malfunctions and direct discharges of raw sewage into waters of the Commonwealth.  On April 17, 2015, the DEP approved the joint plan, and several landowners appealed DEP’s approval. Hegins Township changed position during the appeal and decided to join the landowners’ challenge to the economic feasibility of the joint plan.  The projected the cost of the project is approximately $26 million.

The ruling means the joint plan can move forward. The Commonwealth Court decision, filed Tuesday, was heard before Judge Renee Cohn Jubelirer, Judge Ellen Ceisler and Senior Judge Dan Pellegrini.  In an unreported opinion, Judge Ceisler writes: “We agree with Hubley and DEP that the board’s ruling undermines the act’s procedures and contradicts the act’s express policy of protecting ‘public health, safety and welfare of the citizens by providing for a technically competent, integrated and coordinated system of sanitary sewage disposal. We will not permit Hegins to escape its public commitment, and its agreed-upon obligation, to work with Hubley and the Hegins-Hubley Water Authority to implement a viable sewage treatment plan without following ‘the proper and transparent procedures outlined in the Sewage Facilities Act.’ ”

The Court also denied Hegins Township’s request to remand the matter to DEP for additional public comment on the most recent revisions to the joint plan.

Paul J. Bruder of Mette Evans & Woodside represented Hubley Township throughout the EHB proceeding and the Commonwealth Court appeal.

Matthew D. Coble Joins Mette, Evans & Woodside

Matthew D. Coble, AttorneyMette, Evans & Woodside announced that attorney Matt Coble has joined the firm as shareholder.

Matt represents insurance companies, fraternal benefit societies, insurance producers (individuals and agents), reinsurers, third party administrators, and others in connection with various insurance regulatory, transactional, and litigation matters.

In connection with his insurance industry related work, Matt is one of three Pennsylvania members in the Federation of Regulatory Counsel, a multi-national association of lawyers who have significant experience in the practice of insurance regulatory and corporate law.

Matt’s practice also includes representing businesses and individuals with respect to issues they encounter on a day-to-day basis, and when necessary he appears before Pennsylvania administrative agencies and courts to advocate for his clients’ interests.

“Matt’s extensive experience with a broad range of legal challenges will be a great benefit to our clients,” said the firm’s President Tim Hoy. “He is an outstanding addition to the depth and breadth of legal experience at Mette, Evans & Woodside.”

Mette, Evans & Woodside has a long-standing tradition of providing comprehensive legal representation in Litigation, Estates and Trusts, Business and Real Estate. Founded in 1969, the firm provides sound legal counsel to clients throughout Pennsylvania for all facets of their professional and personal life.

Mette, Evans & Woodside Names Veronica Boyer Shareholder

Veronica BoyerMette, Evans & Woodside announced that attorney Veronica Boyer was named a Shareholder with the law firm effective January 1, 2019. Ms. Boyer joined the firm in May of 2017.

Veronica focuses her practice in construction law and litigation as well as commercial, real estate and environmental litigation. She also handles matters involving procurement law and related administrative law issues. Veronica was named one of Central Penn Business Journal’s 30 Women of Influence for her demonstrated commitment to her clients and the community. She is active in several charitable causes including a recent project which funded construction of a two-unit home for impoverished families in Haiti.

“Through her work with clients and contributions to our community, Veronica has proven herself to be a respected member of the Mette, Evans & Woodside legal team,” said Timothy A. Hoy, President. “We are delighted to have her become a Shareholder in the firm.”

Mette, Evans & Woodside has a long-standing tradition of providing comprehensive legal representation in Litigation, Estates and Trusts, Business and Real Estate. Founded in 1969, the firm provides sound legal counsel to clients throughout Pennsylvania for all facets of their professional and personal life. For more information, visit www.Mette.com.

Three Mette, Evans & Woodside Attorneys Named “Best Lawyers”

Howell Mette, James Ulsh and Timothy Hoy Recognized

Attorneys (pictured left to right): Howell Mette, James Ulsh and Timothy Hoy

Attorneys Howell C. Mette, James A. Ulsh and Timothy A. Hoy were selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers® 2019. Best Lawyers is the oldest and one of the most respected peer review publications in the legal profession. The Best Lawyers designation is based on an exhaustive peer-review survey in which more than ninety thousand leading attorneys cast over ten million votes on the legal abilities of other lawyers in their specialties.

Selected in the tax law category, Howell C. Mette, the founding shareholder of Mette, Evans & Woodside, has long been recognized for his work in trusts and estate planning. Mr. Mette was first named Best Lawyer in 2009. He is also AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell and has earned the recognition of Super Lawyer.

James A. Ulsh, a long-time shareholder, was recognized for business organization law. Mr. Ulsh concentrates his law practice on banking, commercial law, healthcare issues, employee benefits programs and estate planning and administration. He has previously been named a Super Lawyer and is also AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell.

Timothy A. Hoy, current President of Mette, Evans & Woodside, was recognized for his work in banking and finance law. Mr. Hoy focuses his law practice on assisting businesses and financial institutions. In addition, Mr. Hoy has taught Payment Systems at Pennsylvania State University – Dickinson Law and at Widener Law Harrisburg.

Mette, Evans & Woodside has a long-standing tradition of providing comprehensive legal representation in Litigation, Estates and Trusts, Business and Real Estate. Founded in 1969, the firm provides clients throughout Pennsylvania with sound legal counsel for all facets of their professional and personal life.

Mette, Evans & Woodside Teams Up with RSVP for Children’s Book Drive

Firm’s Third Annual Book Drive Is Expected To Collect Thousands Of Books

Harrisburg, PA – Mette, Evans & Woodside is partnering with RSVP of the Capital Region for their annual children’s book collection drive.

Collection of new and gently used books for children ages 4 to 12 will begin on September 10th and continue through October 26th. Collection bins will be available at over 10 locations throughout the area including: Mette, Evans & Woodside, Capital Blue Cross, West Shore YMCA, Dauphin County Bar Association and Quality Cleaners. A complete list of locations is attached or can be found at www.mette.com/childrens-book-drive. The donated books will be distributed at after school tutoring and pre-K programs to children to encourage reading.

“Children who read at home and have access to books are more likely to do well in school. This book drive will help get more books into the hands of the children in our community,” said Kathi Simpson, attorney with Mette, Evans & Woodside.

According to the Literacy Project Foundation, 6 out of 10 households do not buy a single book in a year. Donating books provides an opportunity for a child to grow a love of reading and increasing the likelihood of their success in school and life.

Mette, Evans & Woodside has a long-standing tradition of providing comprehensive legal representation in Litigation, Estates and Trusts, Business and Real Estate. Founded in 1969, the firm provides clients throughout Pennsylvania with sound legal counsel for all facets of their professional and personal life. For more information, visit www.Mette.com.

Simpson to Serve on ‘PA Coalition Against Rape’ Board of Directors

Organization Advocates to Eliminate Sexual Violence

Mette, Evans & Woodside attorney Kathryn L. Simpson was recently appointed to the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape Board of Directors.

Founded in 1975, the mission of the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR) is to work to end sexual violence and advocate for the rights and needs of all sexual assault victims. PCAR partners with a network of rape crisis programs to bring help, hope, and healing around issues of sexual violence to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Ms. Simpson’s law practice is in Commercial Litigation, Employment Law, Health Law and Mediation & Arbitration. Named as a Super Lawyer for the past nine years, she is recognized as one of the preeminent litigators in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Kathi is a frequent presenter of continuing legal education programs for the Pennsylvania Bar Institute and the National Business Institute. In addition to practicing law, she is actively involved with several nonprofit and community organizations.

Mette, Evans & Woodside has a long-standing tradition of providing comprehensive legal representation in Litigation, Estates and Trusts, Business and Real Estate. Founded in 1969, the firm provides clients throughout Pennsylvania with sound legal counsel for all facets of their professional and personal life.

Settlement of First Amendment Lawsuit Against York County, Pennsylvania

Mette, Evans & Woodside announces the settlement of a client’s lawsuit against York County, Pennsylvania, alleging violations of the client’s rights under the First Amendment. The suit was filed in U.S. District Court in Harrisburg.

The firm’s client desired to conduct a public demonstration in front of the York County Courthouse, but was threatened by York County with criminal prosecution if he would not first comply with an onerous and outdated ordinance. Among other things, the ordinance required disclosure of the client’s “affiliation with any organization or identifiable group” as a condition of applying for a permit to demonstrate on property owned by York County. The ordinance also conditioned approval of a permit upon criteria including any “reasonable expectation of provocative messages.” The firm’s client intended to protest racism.

After filing suit, the county retreated from its threats of criminal prosecution, allowed the client to protest without complying with the challenged ordinance, and ultimately paid $30,000 in settlement of the case.

Attorneys Aaron D. Martin, Veronica L. Boyer and Jacob H. Kiessling represented the firm’s client in this action. Mette, Evans & Woodside maintains an active practice protecting the constitutional rights of private citizens and entities.

Mette, Evans & Woodside Hosts Inns of Court Conference

Inns_Court_Summit_June2018_BarrensMette, Evans & Woodside hosted a conference for local Inns of Court leaders in June 2018 at its office. The “Summit” was conducted by Ernest J. Barrens, Director of Chapter Relations for the American Inns of Court. Mr. Barrens led discussions about recruiting members for the local Inns and program development. In attendance was MEW shareholder, Kathi Simpson, who is the president of the William W. Lipsitt Inn of Court in Harrisburg.

Four Mette, Evans & Woodside Attorneys Named “Super Lawyers”

Ninth Year That Firm’s Attorneys Are Honored

Attorney's Named Super Lawyers

Attorneys pictured (left to right): Kathryn Simpson, James Goldsmith, Michael Farrell & Victoria Edwards

Mette, Evans & Woodside attorneys Kathryn L. Simpson, James L. Goldsmith and Michael A. Farrell were named as top attorneys in Pennsylvania by Super Lawyers. Attorney Victoria P. Edwards was also recognized by Super Lawyer as a Rising Star. The Super Lawyers honor is reserved for attorneys who exhibit excellence in their legal practice, with just five percent achieving the recognition in the state.

Ms. Simpson’s practice is in Commercial Litigation, Employment Law, Health Law and Mediation & Arbitration. This is the ninth year that Ms. Simpson has been recognized as a Super Lawyer for her work in business litigation. She is a frequent speaker and author of continuing legal education course materials for the Pennsylvania Bar Institute.

Mr. Goldsmith focuses his practice in professional licensure defense and real estate litigation. He was recognized in the professional defense category. He has also provided legal expertise to professional trade associations such as the Pennsylvania State Association of Boroughs, and currently the Pennsylvania Association of REALTORS®, the Greater Philadelphia and Harrisburg Associations of REALTORS® and the Greater Scranton Association of REALTORS®. He has written and lectured extensively on real estate issues.

Mr. Farrell’s practice is in the defense of workers’ compensation claims. Mr. Farrell is a certified specialist in the practice of workers’ compensation law by the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Section on Workers’ Compensation Law as authorized by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Mr. Farrell is a member of the Dauphin County and Pennsylvania Bar Associations, where he is also a member of several sections related to workers’ compensation and civil litigation. He has published articles and has taught seminars relating to Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Law.

Ms. Edwards dedicates her practice to workers’ compensation and social security disability. Ms. Edwards also is a certified specialist in the practice of workers’ compensation law by the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Section on Workers’ Compensation Law as authorized by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.

“The Super Lawyer recognition of four attorneys in the firm is a confirmation of Mette, Evans & Woodside’s dedication to providing top-notch legal counsel,” said the firm’s President Tim Hoy. “We’re proud to have these outstanding attorneys on staff.”

The selections for Super Lawyers are held each year as a result of a rigorous multi-phase selection process that includes a statewide survey of lawyers; independent evaluation of candidates by Law & Politics’ attorney-led research staff; a peer review of candidates by practice area and a good-standing and disciplinary check.

Mette, Evans & Woodside has a long-standing tradition of providing comprehensive legal representation in Litigation, Estates and Trusts, Business and Real Estate. Founded in 1969, the firm provides clients throughout Pennsylvania with sound legal counsel for all facets of their professional and personal life.