Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed the original dues bill shortly after someone leaked word that the governor's nominee to the Fifth District Court of Appeal, former state Sen. Chuck Poochigian, had been labeled "not qualified" by the Commission on Judicial Nominees Evaluation. Schwarzenegger was also angered by news that a former Bar employee had embezzled $675,000.
In response, Bar officials conducted an unsuccessful search for the source of the leak, and they hired an auditor to review the organization's practices. Executive director Judy Johnson also announced her resignation (free reg. req.).
"I am pleased that the State Bar has taken these concerns seriously and has taken commendable steps to address these problems," Schwarzenegger wrote in a signing message. "I urge the State Bar to continue its efforts and look forward to evaluating its progress when next year's dues bill comes to my desk."
Bar President Howard Miller said in a prepared statement that the governor's veto "helped us to focus on issues and matters that are important. This entire period has strengthened the State Bar and given us important missions and goals that we now can actively achieve."
The $410 fees for active members will be due on March 1.