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First Substitute H.B. 392

Representative Curtis Oda proposes the following substitute bill:


             1     
RETENTION ELECTIONS FOR JUSTICE COURT JUDGES

             2     
2011 GENERAL SESSION

             3     
STATE OF UTAH

             4     
Chief Sponsor: Curtis Oda

             5     
Senate Sponsor: D. Chris Buttars

             6     
             7      LONG TITLE
             8      General Description:
             9          This bill allows justice court judges to be evaluated for the 2016 retention election
             10      under two different standards.
             11      Highlighted Provisions:
             12          This bill:
             13          .    for the 2016 retention election only, authorizes the Judicial Performance Evaluation
             14      Commission to evaluate justice court judges under two different standards by
             15      allowing:
             16              .    justice court judges who are employed part-time on July 1, 2012 to be evaluated
             17      by the criteria established before the Judicial Performance Evaluation
             18      Commission was established; and
             19              .    justice court judges who are employed full-time on July 1, 2012 to be evaluated
             20      by the new criteria established when the Judicial Performance Evaluation
             21      Commission was created.
             22      Money Appropriated in this Bill:
             23          None
             24      Other Special Clauses:
             25          None


             26      Utah Code Sections Affected:
             27      AMENDS:
             28          63I-2-278, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2008, Chapter 3 and renumbered and
             29      amended by Laws of Utah 2008, Chapter 382
             30          78A-7-202, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2009, Chapter 146
             31     
             32      Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
             33          Section 1. Section 63I-2-278 is amended to read:
             34           63I-2-278. Repeal dates, Title 78A and Title 78B.
             35          (1) Subsection 78A-7-202 (9) is repealed November 15, 2016.
             36          [(1)] (2) Section 78A-9-103 , Practicing law without a license, is repealed May 3, 2012.
             37          [(2) Subsections 78B-12-301 (1) and 78B-12-302 (1) are repealed January 1, 2010.]
             38          Section 2. Section 78A-7-202 is amended to read:
             39           78A-7-202. Justice court judges to be appointed -- Procedure -- Retention.
             40          (1) As used in this section:
             41          (a) "Local government executive" means:
             42          (i) for a county:
             43          (A) the chair of the county commission in a county operating under the county
             44      commission or expanded county commission form of county government;
             45          (B) the county executive in a county operating under the county executive-council form
             46      of county government; and
             47          (C) the county manager in a county operating under the council-manager form of
             48      county government; and
             49          (ii) for a city or town:
             50          (A) the mayor of the city or town; or
             51          (B) the city manager, in the council-manager form of government described in
             52      Subsection 10-3b-103 (6).
             53          (b) "Local legislative body" means:
             54          (i) for a county, the county commission or county council; and
             55          (ii) for a city or town, the council of the city or town.
             56          (2) There is created in each county a county justice court nominating commission to


             57      review applicants and make recommendations to the appointing authority for a justice court
             58      position. The commission shall be convened when a new justice court judge position is created
             59      or when a vacancy in an existing court occurs for a justice court located within the county.
             60          (a) Membership of the justice court nominating commission shall be as follows:
             61          (i) one member appointed by:
             62          (A) the county commission if the county has a county commission form of
             63      government; or
             64          (B) the county executive if the county has an executive-council form of government;
             65          (ii) one member appointed by the municipalities in the counties as follows:
             66          (A) if the county has only one municipality, appointment shall be made by the
             67      governing authority of that municipality; or
             68          (B) if the county has more than one municipality, appointment shall be made by a
             69      municipal selection committee composed of the mayors of each municipality in the county;
             70          (iii) one member appointed by the county bar association; and
             71          (iv) two members appointed by the governing authority of the jurisdiction where the
             72      judicial office is located.
             73          (b) If there is no county bar association, the member in Subsection (2)(a)(iii) shall be
             74      appointed by the regional bar association. If no regional bar association exists, the state bar
             75      association shall make the appointment.
             76          (c) Members appointed under Subsections (2)(a)(i) and (ii) may not be an elected
             77      official of the county or municipality.
             78          (d) The nominating commission shall submit at least two names to the appointing
             79      authority of the jurisdiction expected to be served by the judge. The local government
             80      executive shall appoint a judge from the list submitted and the appointment ratified by the local
             81      legislative body.
             82          (e) The state court administrator shall provide staff to the commission. The Judicial
             83      Council shall establish rules and procedures for the conduct of the commission.
             84          (3) Judicial vacancies shall be advertised in a newspaper of general circulation, through
             85      the Utah State Bar, and other appropriate means.
             86          (4) Selection of candidates shall be based on compliance with the requirements for
             87      office and competence to serve as a judge.


             88          (5) Once selected, the Judicial Council shall certify the judge as qualified to hold office
             89      upon successful completion of the orientation program.
             90          (6) The selection of a person to fill the office of justice court judge is effective upon
             91      certification of the judge by the Judicial Council. A justice court judge may not perform
             92      judicial duties until certified by the Judicial Council.
             93          (7) Upon the expiration of a justice court judge's term of office, the judge shall be
             94      subject to an unopposed retention election in the county or counties in which the court to which
             95      the judge is appointed is located, in accordance with the procedures set forth in Section
             96      20A-12-201 .
             97          (8) Before each retention election, each justice court judge shall be evaluated in
             98      accordance with the performance evaluation program established in [Subsection 78A-2-104 (5)]
             99      Title 78A, Chapter 12, Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission Act.
             100          (9) Notwithstanding Subsection (8), each justice court judge who is subject to a
             101      retention election in 2016, and who is not a full-time justice court judge on July 1, 2012, shall
             102      be evaluated by the Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission according to the following
             103      performance standards:
             104          (a) have no less than 30 annual hours of continuing legal education for each year of the
             105      justice court judge's current term;
             106          (b) have no more than one public reprimand issued by the Judicial Conduct
             107      Commission or the Supreme Court during the justice court judge's current term; and
             108          (c) have no cases under advisement for more than two months.


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