Posts tagged "Russell"

Russell Block Associates v. Board of Assessors of Worcester (Lawyers Weekly No. 11-145-15)

NOTICE:  All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.  If you find a typographical error or other formal error, please notify the Reporter of Decisions, Supreme Judicial Court, John Adams Courthouse, 1 Pemberton Square, Suite 2500, Boston, MA, 02108-1750; (617) 557-1030; SJCReporter@sjc.state.ma.us   14-P-283                                        Appeals Court   RUSSELL BLOCK ASSOCIATES  vs.  BOARD OF ASSESSORS OF WORCESTER. No. 14-P-283. Suffolk.     November 10, 2014. – September 16, 2015.   Present:  Rubin, Brown, & Maldonado, JJ. Taxation, Real estate tax:  abatement, classification of property.  Real Property, Tax.     Appeal from a decision of the Appellate Tax Board.     John F. O’Day, Jr., Assistant City Solicitor, for board of assessors of Worcester. Daniel I. Cotton for the taxpayer.     BROWN, J.  The board of assessors of Worcester (assessors) challenges a decision of the Appellate Tax Board (board) granting the taxpayer an abatement of the fiscal year (FY) 2012 tax on its parking garage.  The issue for consideration is whether the board erred by finding and ruling that the subject property was a multiple-use property appropriately classified as part residential and part commercial.[1]  See G. L. c. 59, § 2A(b).  We conclude that the board’s classification determination was a reasonable interpretation of the statutory language.  Accordingly, we affirm the decision of the board. 1.  Facts.  We summarize the board’s findings.[2]  In 1992, the taxpayer, Russell Block Associates, constructed a twenty-four story residential building (Tower) in the city of Worcester.  The Tower development project was conditioned on the construction of a parking garage.[3]  The five-story garage in issue contains 300 parking spaces and is located across a small side street from the Tower.  There are no dwelling units in the garage.  By contract entitled “Agreement to Provide Parking Spaces,” the taxpayer agreed to reserve a minimum of one hundred spaces and up to a maximum of 250 spaces for exclusive use by the tenants of the Tower. For the next nineteen years, the assessors classified the garage as a mixed-use property, taxing a large percentage of its value at the lower residential rate.[4]  In classifying the property in this manner, the assessors followed the guidelines issued by the Commissioner of Revenue (commissioner).[5]  See G. L. c. 58, § 3; McNeill v. Assessors of W. Springfield, 396 Mass. 603, 606 (1986).  Beginning in FY 2012, however, the assessors classified the property as entirely commercial. 2.  Standard of review.  Our task is to embrace an interpretation “consistent with the purpose of the statute and in harmony with the statute as a whole.”  Adams v. Assessors of Westport, 76 Mass. App. Ct. 180, 183-184 (2010), quoting from Sudbury v. Scott, 439 Mass. […]

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Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - September 16, 2015 at 8:20 pm

Categories: News   Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Commonwealth v. Russell (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-008-15)

NOTICE:  All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.  If you find a typographical error or other formal error, please notify the Reporter of Decisions, Supreme Judicial Court, John Adams Courthouse, 1 Pemberton Square, Suite 2500, Boston, MA, 02108-1750; (617) 557-1030; SJCReporter@sjc.state.ma.us   SJC-11602   COMMONWEALTH  vs.  GERALD RUSSELL. Essex.     November 3, 2014. – January 26, 2015.   Present:  Gants, C.J., Spina, Cordy, Botsford, Duffly, & Hines, JJ.     Reasonable Doubt.  Practice, Criminal, Reasonable doubt, Instructions to jury, Lesser included offense.  Supreme Judicial Court, Superintendence of inferior courts.  Rape.  Indecent Assault and Battery.       Indictments found and returned in the Superior Court Department on September 18, 1990.   The cases were tried before Richard E. Welch, III, J.   The Supreme Judicial Court granted an application for direct appellate review.     Eric S. Brandt, Committee for Public Counsel Services, for the defendant. Kenneth E. Steinfield, Assistant District Attorney, for the Commonwealth. Alex G. Philipson, amicus curiae, submitted a brief. Bruce Ferg, amicus curiae, submitted a brief.     CORDY, J.  “Then, what is reasonable doubt? It is a term often used, probably pretty well understood, but not easily defined.”  Commonwealth v. Webster, 5 Cush. 295, 320 (1850).  So begins the venerable Webster charge on reasonable doubt.  The Webster charge informs the jury that a reasonable doubt exists when “they cannot say they feel an abiding conviction, to a moral certainty, of the truth of the charge” (emphasis supplied).  Id.  For more than 150 years, this charge has delivered the preferred language for explaining reasonable doubt to jurors sitting on criminal trials in the Commonwealth.  Yet, it has never been required and, in this case, it was eschewed in favor of an instruction that permitted a conviction if the jury were “firmly convinced” of the defendant’s guilt. The defendant was acquitted on eighteen counts of statutory rape, but convicted on seven counts of the lesser included offense of indecent assault and battery on a child under the age of fourteen.  He appeals his convictions on grounds that the charge on reasonable doubt was constitutionally inadequate and that the lesser included offenses should not have been submitted to the jury.  With respect to the former, he argues that, even if the charge was constitutionally sound, we should exercise our general superintendence power to require the Webster charge in all criminal trials. We granted the defendant’s application for direct appellate review and now conclude that the judge’s instruction on reasonable doubt passed constitutional muster and that there was no error in the submission of the lesser included offenses to the jury.  Nonetheless, we […]

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Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - January 26, 2015 at 4:40 pm

Categories: News   Tags: , , , ,

Pet of the Week: Clark, 1-Year-Old Jack Russell Mix

Looking to adopt a pet? Now up for adoption at the Animal Rescue League of Boston is Clark. Clark is a one-year-old Jack Russell terrier mix who was found as a stray on the streets of Charlestown. Clark is an active boy with a lot of energy looking for a job to do and a family to please. His enthusiastic bark would make him a better candidate for a house rather than an apartment. We would recommend Clark go to a home with older children and an active family as he is still learning his basic manners. He does have some skin allergies so his new owners should be willing to consult their veterinarian on this issue. If you want a fun, high energy dog to become a member of your family, Clark is your guy! For more information on Clark or any of the other animals currently residing at the Animal Rescue League of Boston, call 617-226-5602. The Animal Rescue League of Boston is open Tuesday through Thursday 1-7 p.m. and Friday through Sunday 1-4 p.m., excluding some holidays. For more information, see the ARL Boston website, Twitter and Facebook page. SOUTH END PATCH: Facebook | Twitter | E-mail Updates South End Patch

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Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - February 24, 2013 at 3:46 pm

Categories: Arrests   Tags: , , , ,