Tuesday, January 13, 2015
Ind. Courts - Amendment proposed to Article 7, the Judicial Article
Senator Michael R. Young has introduced SJR 15, proposing an amendment to Article 7 of the Constitution of the State of Indiana concerning courts and court officers. Main changes proposed:
- Renames the judicial nominating commission as the commission on judicial nominations and qualifications.
- Provides that one commission member, an attorney, is elected by attorneys licensed in Indiana.
- One commission member is appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives, and one commission member is appointed by the president pro tempore of the senate.
- Requires that at least one of the three commission members appointed by the governor must be an attorney. ("At least one of the citizens appointed by the Governor must be admitted to the practice of law.")
- Prohibits a person who is a lobbyist from serving on the commission.
- Provides for the governor to fill a vacancy on the supreme court or the court of appeals from nominees recommended by the commission, subject to confirmation by the senate.
- If the Governor does not make an appointment not later than sixty days after the Commission makes a recommendation to fill the vacancy, the Senate may fill the vacancy by confirming any of the nominees recommended by the Commission to the Governor.
- Provides that a justice of the supreme court or a judge of the court of appeals serves until July 1 of the tenth year after the justice's or judge's appointment is confirmed by the senate or the justice's or judge's retention in office is confirmed by the house of representatives. (Currently the initial term is only until the next general election following the expiration of two years from the date of appointment.)
- Provides that if a justice or judge wants to serve a new term, the justice or judge must apply to the house of representatives for retention. Specifies that a judge or justice will be retained, unless: (1) the judge or justice does not apply to the house of representatives for retention; or (2) at least 60% of the members of the house of representatives vote against retention.
- Amends the provisions concerning impeachment proceedings for a justice or judge. (Specifically includes Art.6, Sec. 8, which provides: "All State, county, township, and town officers, may be impeached, or removed from office, in such manner as may be prescribed by law.")
- Provides a transition for justices and judges serving at the time of the adoption of these amendments to the constitution. Provides they may continue in office until the date their term would have expired under the current provisions. Provides that if a justice or judge wants to serve a new term, the justice or judge must apply to the house of representatives for retention.
Posted by Marcia Oddi on January 13, 2015 04:46 PM
Posted to Indiana Courts