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Judge Orders Illinois To Outline Game Payment Plan

A federal judge has given Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich and his state attorney general until next Monday to indicate how and when the state will pay $510,528.64 in attorney’s fees, accumulated by the ESA and others in fighting the state's successfully
A federal judge has given Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich and his state attorney general until next Monday to indicate how and when the state will pay $510,528.64 in attorney’s fees, accumulated by the ESA and others in fighting the state's successfully blocked game law. The news follows recent developments revealing that original case attorneys planned to seek federal assistance in claiming the money owed, plus interest. In December 2005, Illinois district judge Matthew S. Kennelly issued a permanent injunction regarding the implementation of the law, dubbed the Safe Games Illinois Act, which would have required retailers to use warning labels in addition to the existing ESRB labels, as well as post signs within stores explaining the ESRB rating system. In addition, sale of offending games to minors would have earned stores a $1,000 fine on a petty offense, while failure to post explanatory signage would draw a $500 fine for the first three violations and $1,000 for each subsequent count. The court's injunction was recently upheld by the Court of Appeals, effectively killing the would-be legislation. According to an NBC report, judge Kennelly has warned the Illinois government that "the time for waffling has passed," and accused both Blagojevich and the attorney general of giving the Entertainment Software Association, Video Software Dealers Association and Illinois Retail Merchants Association the “run around.” The news follows US District Court Judge George Caram Steeh's ordering of the state of Michigan to pay $182,349 to the ESA, for attorney's fees and costs derived from the legal battle that found the state's anti-violent game law unconstitutional. In addtion, the ESA also recently announced its aim to reclaim attorney's fees from the state of Louisiana derived the legal battle that found the state's video game legislation unconstitutional.

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