L-ARLJ.02 PRESIDING JUDGE Presiding Judge and Court Governance (a) Election, Term, Vacancies, Removal and Selection Criteria (1) Election. The Presiding Judge shall be elected by majority vote of the Grant County District Court judges for a term of not less than two years. In the same manner, the judges shall elect an Assistant Presiding Judge of the court who shall serve as Acting Presiding Judge during the absence or upon the request of the Presiding Judge and who shall perform such further duties as the Presiding Judge shall direct. If the judges fail or refuse to elect a Presiding Judge or Assistant Presiding Judge, the Presiding Judge then in office shall notify the Supreme Court of said failure or refusal and the Supreme Court shall appoint a Presiding Judge or Assistant Presiding Judge pursuant to GR 29(a)(1). (2) Term. The Presiding Judge shall be elected for a term of not fewer than two years, subject to reelection. The term of the Presiding Judge shall commence on January 1 of the year in which the Presiding Judge’s term begins. (3) Vacancies. Interim vacancies of the office of Presiding Judge or Acting Presiding Judge shall be filled as provided in (a)(1). (4) Removal. The Presiding Judge may be removed by a majority vote of the judges of the court. (5) Selection Criteria. A Presiding Judge must have at least four years of experience as a judge, unless this requirement is waived by a majority vote of the judges of the court. Selection of a Presiding Judge should be based on the judge’s a) Management and administrative ability b) Interest in serving in the position. c) Experience and familiarity with a variety of trial court assignments, and d) Ability to motivate and educate other judicial officers and court personnel. (6) Notification of Chief Justice. The Presiding Judge so elected shall send notice of the election of the Presiding Judge and Assistant Presiding Judge to the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court within 30 days of election. (7) Caseload Adjustment. To the extent possible, the judicial caseload should be adjusted to provide the Presiding Judge with sufficient time and resources to devote to the management and administrative duties of the office. (8) General Responsibilities. The Presiding Judge is responsible for leading the management and administration of the court’s business, recommending policies and procedures that improve the court’s effectiveness, and allocating resources in a way that maximizes the court’s ability to resolve disputes fairly and expeditiously. (9) Duties and Authority. The judicial and administrative duties set forth in this rule cannot be delegated to persons in either the legislative or executive branches of government. A Presiding Judge may delegate the performance of ministerial duties to court employees; however, it is still the Presiding Judge’s responsibility to ensure they are performed in accordance with this rule. In addition to exercising general administrative supervision over the court, the Presiding Judge shall: a) Supervise the business of the court and judicial officers in such manner as to ensure the expeditious and efficient processing of all cases and equitable distribution of the workload among judicial officers; b) Assign judicial officers to hear cases pursuant to statute or rule. The court may establish general policies governing the assignment of judges; c) Coordinate judicial officers’ vacations, attendance at education programs, and similar matters; d) Develop and coordinate statistical and management information; e) Supervise the daily operation of the court including: 1) All personnel assigned to perform court functions; and 2) All personnel employed under the judicial branch of government including but not limited to working conditions, hiring, discipline, and termination decisions except wages, or benefits directly related to wages; and 3) The Court Administrator, who shall report directly to the Presiding Judge. (see.03) f) Supervise the court’s accounts and audit the procurement and disbursement of appropriations and preparation of the court’s annual budget request; g) Appoint standing and special committees of judicial officers necessary for the proper performance of the duties of the court; h) Promulgate local rules as a majority of the judges may approve or as the Supreme Court shall direct; i) Supervise the preparation and filing of reports required by statute and court rule; j) Act as the official spokesperson for the court in all matters with the executive or legislative branches of state and local government and the community unless the Presiding Judge shall designate another judge or employee to serve in this capacity; k) Preside at meetings of the judicial officers of the court; l) Determine the qualifications of and establish a training program for pro tem judges and pro tem court commissioners; and m) Perform other duties as may be assigned by statute or court rule. 10) Enabling Authority. The Presiding Judge shall have the general responsibilities, duties and authority set forth in GR 29. [Amended effective September 1, 2004]
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