San Francisco - The California Supreme Court has announced that a contract proposal by Matthew Bender & Company, a member of the LexisNexis Group, has been accepted by the contracting officials for the State of California and approved by the Supreme Court. Matthew Bender & Company has been the publisher since 2003 under a prior contract. The new contract is for a five-year term that began with opinions filed on July 1, 2010.
"This new contract is noteworthy for providing unprecedented pricing stability for Official Reports subscribers, particularly state and local government entities that are affected by the state's budget crisis," said Chief Justice Ronald M. George. The Chief Justice further noted that, "the contract also provides for continued and improved public access to all California published opinions at no charge."
The Official Reports are California's authoritative body of appellate decisional law and include all opinions of the California Supreme Court, published opinions of the Courts of Appeal and superior court appellate divisions, and decisions of the Commission on Judicial Performance.
The new contract reduces subscription prices by approximately 1.5 percent for advance pamphlet subscriptions, and 2 percent for bound volumes. The contract also freezes prices at those levels for two years, then limits price increases to 5 percent for each of the next two years, assuming a specified economic index would otherwise allow a greater increase.
The new contract provides for significant enhancements to the Official Reports Public Access Web Site ("Searchable opinions 1850-present" at www.courtinfo.ca.gov/opinions). This Web site provides searchable access to authenticated computer versions of opinion text as officially published at no charge to users. The Web site is visited approximately 120,000 times per month on average. In addition, online computer access to official versions of opinions will continue to be provided on the lexis.com research service, and offline on CD-ROM.
Acceptance of the Matthew Bender proposal follows a recommendation by the California Advisory Committee on Publication of the Official Reports, which resulted from the committee's study of Official Reports publication and issuance of a request for publication proposals earlier this year.
The advisory committee was appointed by Chief Justice George and consists of Supreme Court Associate Justice Carol Corrigan, Chair; Pam Giarrizzo, Chief Counsel for the Secretary of State; Manuel Medeiros, State Solicitor General for the Attorney General; Joseph L. Chairez, for the President of the State Bar; Nanna Frye, librarian for the Court of Appeal, San Diego; and Edward W. Jessen, Reporter of Decisions for the Supreme Court and Courts of Appeal.
By statute, the contracting officials for the state are the Chief Justice of California, the Secretary of State, the Attorney General, the President of the State Bar, and the Reporter of Decisions.
On acceptance of the Matthew Bender proposal, Steven C. Zubrzycki, Vice President, Global Licensing and Content Acquisition for LexisNexis stated: "LexisNexis is proud to have served as the publisher of the Official Reports for the State of California since 2003 and we're delighted that we have once again won the contract to handle this important responsibility. The publishing of official California case law complements the wide range of valuable content we provide for members of the California legal profession, including the Judicial Council's jury instructions."