Best Practices Committee
June 2, 2010
Board for Judicial Administration
Best Practices Committee
June 2, 2010
Conference Call - Meeting Minutes
Judge Julie Spector, Chair
Mr. Jeff Amram
Ms. Roni Booth
Judge Steven Buzzard
Ms. Susan Carlson
Ms. Ruth Gordon
Judge Linda Krese
Ms. Yvonne Pettus
Mr. David Ponzoha
Judge Christine Quinn-Brintnall
Ms. Julia Appel
Ms. Jenni Christopher
Ms. Colleen Clark
Welcome and Call to Order
Judge Spector called the meeting to order at 12:20.
Approval of Minutes
Judge Spector asked if there were any changes to the May 24, 2010 minutes; there were none.
A motion to approve the minutes was moved and seconded; the motion passed unanimously.
May 24, 2010 – Recap of Decisions Made
• Start with superior court as caseload measurement data are readily available. Continue with COA and CLJ once superior court measures are finalized.
• Work on the first three caseload measures together as they are closely related (Clearance Rate; Time to Resolution; and Age of Active Pending Caseload).
• Combine them into one audit measure with a standard relating to each area.
• Include caseload types Criminal, Civil, Domestic, and Juvenile Offender.
Summary of Superior Court Caseload Statistics
Suggested standard: The rate of outgoing cases to incoming cases should be at least ninety percent.
The Committee agreed to use a ninety percent standard.
Time to Resolution
The Committee discussed this measure in depth. The caseload information provided by staff was for the year 2009. It was concluded that more information is needed before deciding on how to set the standard. Staff will compile five years of data (trends) for each of the four case types, and then the Committee will continue the discussion.
There was general agreement that the focus should be on only the 100% (national) time standard for each of the four case types.
Age of Active Caseload
Suggested standard A:
No more than X percent of active cases should be pending beyond the maximum time standard for each case type.
Suggested standard B:
The ratio of active pending to resolved cases should be no higher than X for criminal, Y for civil, Z for domestic, and W for juvenile offender cases.
The Committee discussed these two standards in depth. Standard A would require some subjective evaluation on the part of the auditor when a court has a high percentage of active pending cases representing a very small number of cases. Standard B data are already published in the Caseload Reports, and rely less on the auditor’s interpretive discretion. Jenni described the meaning of the ratio in Standard B as it relates to a court’s backlog of cases. The number of active cases pending relative to the number of cases resolved within a year describes the portion of an additional year that would be necessary to resolve all of the pending cases. The Committee asked that a detailed description of the meaning and purpose of this measurement be included in the audit guide. The Committee agreed to use Standard B.
The Committee requested that staff compile five years of data (trends) for each of the four case types. That data will enable the Committee to better decide what ratios the standard should require.
The Committee also finds the title “Age of Active Caseload” misleading. A few alternative titles were mentioned (Caseload Resolution Ratio, Cases Pending versus Resolved, and Active Pending Caseload). Staff will compile a list of possible titles for the Committee. If there are other ideas, please let staff know.
It might take staff two or three weeks to compile the requested data (due to limited staff availability this month). The next meeting will be scheduled as soon as the data are available.
The meeting was adjourned at 1:05 p.m.
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