Daily Briefs, September 1

Nominations open for child welfare awards
The Foster Care Review Board is seeking nominations for its annual Child Welfare Awards, which honor judges, lawyers, foster care workers, and foster parents for exemplary service to children in Michigan’s foster care system.

FCRB Program Manager James Novell said that “The awards recognize those who protect, care for, and advocate for foster care children and their parents. These people have tremendous responsibilities, yet receive little, if any, recognition. The Child Welfare Awards were established to honor them and call attention to their difficult and demanding work.”

Categories include “Jurist of the Year” (judges and referees), “Foster Care Worker of the Year,” “LGAL of the Year” (lawyer guardians ad litem), “Foster Parent of the Year,” and “Parent Attorney of the Year.”

The deadline is Sept. 15. Award recipients will be recognized at the FCRB annual training conference on Nov. 10 in Southfield. Nomination forms are available online at www.courts.michigan.gov/scao/services/fcrb/fcrb.htm

Created by the Michigan legislature in 1981, the FCRB provides a third-party review of the foster care system. The program is administered by the State Court Administrative Office, the administrative agency of the Michigan Supreme Court, and is comprised of citizen volunteers who serve on one of 30 local review boards throughout the state. Local boards review randomly chosen child abuse and neglect cases to assess the performance of courts, the Michigan Department of Human Services, and private child welfare agencies.

Holiday Hours
Please be advised that the Wayne County Probate Court will be closed in observance of Labor Day on Monday, Sept. 5 and will reopen on Tuesday, Sept. 6 at 8 a.m.

The Third Circuit Court Civil, Criminal and Family Divisions will be closed Monday, Sept. 5 in observance of Labor Day.

All branch offices and the Office of the Great Seal will close on Monday, Sept. 5 in observance of Labor Day.  Secretary of State SUPER!Centers normally offer Saturday hours but will be closed on Saturday, Sept. 3.

Licenses and plates that expire on a day when state offices are closed can be renewed the following day without penalty. 

Motorists renewing license plates can “skip the trip” to the branch office and do business by mail, or if eligible, by Internet at www.Michigan.gov/sos. 

Easy to follow instructions can be found with the renewal notice.  License plate tabs will arrive by mail within seven business days.

License plate tabs can also be renewed at Self-Service Stations, many of which are available 24/7.  Visit the Branch Office Locator at www.Michigan.gov/sos to find a local Self-Service Station.

Cooley Law to hold Law Review Symposium
The 2011 Thomas M. Cooley Law Review Symposium presents “Data Mining: Who’s Mining Your Business?” on Thursday, Sept. 22, 5-9 p.m., at Cooley Law School in Lansing, 217 S. Capitol. The 2011 Symposium will be an analysis of how private commercial companies gather a consumer’s personal information via the Internet and how third parties stand to gain profits by buying and later reselling or using such information. By presenting the components of the data mining process, the symposium will provide an opportunity to discuss how data mining works, whether it has the potential to infringe on an internet user's privacy, and what the legal response to such infringement should be. The event is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Monique Howery at howerym@cooley.edu.

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