At the Supreme Court’s conference yesterday, there were no straight grants, but there were actions of note, including:

  • Disney petition. The court denied the Walt Disney Company’s petition for review in Grace v. The Walt Disney Company. In a published opinion, the Fourth District, Division Three, Court of Appeal rejected the argument that Disney is not covered by Anaheim’s Living Wage Ordinance. The Ordinance requires the payment of a minimum wage to employees of “any business in the hospitality industry which benefits from a City Subsidy” and Disney unsuccessfully claimed it was not benefiting from a City Subsidy.
  • Vehicle sales arbitration grant-and-holdKielar v. Superior Court is another grant-and-hold for Ford Motor Warranty Cases (see here and here), where the court limited the issue to: “Do manufacturers’ express or implied warranties that accompany a vehicle at the time of sale [by a dealer] constitute obligations arising from the sale contract [between the dealer and a buyer], permitting manufacturers to enforce an arbitration agreement in the contract pursuant to equitable estoppel?” The court granted the petition for review filed by Horvitz & Levy after the Third District, in a published opinion, overturned an order requiring arbitration. Unusually, the appellate court disagreed with one of its own opinions, decided by a different panel of justices, Felisilda v. FCA US LLC (2020) 53 Cal.App.5th 486. The Supreme Court denied review and depublication requests in Felisilda. (Regarding intra-division splits, see here.)
  • Three Strikes opinion vacated, depublished. The court granted review in People v. Kimble and sent the case back to the Third District “with directions to vacate its decision and reconsider the cause in light of the Attorney General’s concession that defendant was entitled to resentencing under the revised penalty provisions of the Three Strikes Reform Act.” Vacating the decision depublishes the Third District’s opinion (see here), which had rejected the defendant’s resentencing argument.
  • Clemency. The court granted Governor Gavin Newsom’s request for a constitutionally required recommendation (see also here and here) that allows him to pardon Brian Tinney for a 1993 conviction of grand theft and a 1996 conviction of being a felon in possession of a firearm. Newsom has a nearly perfect clemency record — he withdrew one request before a ruling, but the court has approved all 63 of his other requests. That’s better than former Governor Jerry Brown, who had the court without explanation block 10 intended clemency grants. The denial of a request implies that a clemency grant would be an abuse of power.
  • Criminal case grant-and-holds. There were five criminal case grant-and-holds:  another one waiting for decisions in two death penalty appeals — People v. Bankston and People v. Hin (see here); one more on hold for People v. Curiel (see here), which was argued last month; another one waiting for People v. Reynoza (see here); one more holding for People v. Walker (see here); and another one waiting for People v. Emanuel (see here). Also, the court changed the lead case(s) in an earlier grant and hold — People v. Graham, which had been holding for the June opinion in People v. Braden (2023) 14 Cal.5th 791, is now holding instead for People v. Lynch (see here) and People v. Salazar (see here), which was argued last month.
  • Grant-and-hold disposals.  The court dismissed review in three cases that had been holding for the June opinion in People v. Braden (2023) 14 Cal.5th 791. Two others were returned to the Courts of Appeal for reconsideration in light of that opinion.