Adley to fight changes to contract nullification bill

04 15, 2014 by The Daily Advertiser

Sen. Robert Adley, R-Benton, says he is prepared to shoot down any attempts to weaken his bill to undo a lawsuit against 97 oil companies for damaging the coast around New Orleans.

"I hear there will be amendments" when the bill is expected to be debated Tuesday, he said. "I don't have any."

The proposed amendments are to take out the retroactivity clause in SB553 so the bill does not impact the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East, but would apply to any future similar lawsuits.

Adley said Monday he is using information gathered from a Gannett news story that quoted a Louisiana Supreme Court ruling that approved legislation which retroactively nullified the City of New Orleans' lawsuit against gun manufacturers.

"I went through this case you found and every ruling, U.S. and state, says there is no protection from retroactivity for political subdivisions created by the state," Adley said in an interview.

He has point-by-point arguments prepared to fight off any amendments.

The court in 2001 ruled constitutional legislation approved while the lawsuit was active that retroactively said local governmental bodies could not sue gun manufacturers.

The ruling also states that political subdivisions created by the state did not enjoy the same contract protection granted to individuals.

That action nullified the city's contract and the court said "the constitutional prohibitions found in the Contract Clauses of the Federal and State Constitutions do not protect political subdivisions of the state from the passage of retroactive laws impairing their rights with respect to transactions already passed because these protections are for the benefit of private citizens."