Board for Judicial Administration
April 19, 2002
Members present: Chief Justice Gerry Alexander, chair; Judge James Riehl, member-chair; Judge Christine Cary; Mr. Dale Carlisle; Judge Vickie Churchill; Judge Chris Culp; Judge Deborah Fleck; Judge Robert Harris; Judge Stephen Holman; Judge Ron Kessler; Judge Frank Kurtz; Judge Dirk Marler; Ms. Mary McQueen (via phone); Judge Robert McSeveney; Mr. Jan Eric Peterson; and Judge Karen Seinfeld
Members Absent: Judge William Baker; Judge James F. Gavin; Judge Vicki Hogan; Justice Barbara Madsen; and Mr. Richard Manning
Guests Present: Judge Gregory Tripp
Staff Present: Mr. Gil Austin; Ms. Jude Cryderman; Mr. Doug Haake; and Mr. Victor Moore
Call to Order
The meeting was called to order by Chief Justice Gerry Alexander.
It was moved by Judge Kurtz and seconded by Judge Kessler to approve the minutes of the March 15, 2002 meeting as published. The motion passed unanimously.
Presiding Judges' Conference Funding
Ms. McQueen asked that the BJA consider contributing $3,500 for expenses related to the Presiding Judges' Conference.
It was moved by Judge Kurtz and seconded by Judge Harris to approve the contribution not exceeding $3,500 to the Presiding Judges' Conference. The motion passed unanimously.
Judge Fleck reported the association boards have been contacted, and they agreed that BJA is the appropriate vehicle to undertake a study and make recommendation for court funding.
The Board was advised that the counties/cities will go forward next legislative session with a tax relief package. Their package will include recommendations for providing relief for the counties/cities, including the state's assumption of constitutionally mandated services required by the courts.
It was moved by Judge Harris and seconded by Judge McSeveney to authorize the Board for Judicial Administration to create a broad base task force for the purpose of undertaking a study and make recommendations for court funding. The motion passed unanimously.
Judge Culp inquired if there was funding for the task force. Ms. McQueen responded, staff will look at AOC and BJA budgets for task force funds. She advised, the associations might be asked to assume the expenses for their members. Ms. McQueen continued, the budget information will be provided to the BJA in two weeks.
Chief Justice Alexander advised, he would work with Judge Riehl in creating a proposed membership for the task force. Those recommendations will be put before BJA.
Judge Riehl indicated that review of LRPC recommended priorities will be postponed until the May meeting.
Issues for study/and or referrals to other entities
Judge Culp acknowledged the work of Judge Riehl, Judge Marler, Judge McSeveney and Doug Haake in the preparation of the preamble and bylaws for CIRT.
The Board briefly discussed the documents drafted and presented by the CIRT work group. The work group was asked to create a different title for the work group.
It was moved by Judge Culp and seconded to approve the preamble and bylaws with the exception of the group's name and addition of the Public Defenders Association to the membership. The motion passed unanimously.
ARLJ 7-Certification of Courts of Limited Jurisdiction
Judge Marler reported that it is not within the Supreme Court authority to decertify courts of limited jurisdiction. He continued, per AOC statutes, AOC has the ability to conduct performance audits of the courts. According to an informal AG's opinion, the AOC approach is preferable. Judge Marler indicated a group would be convened to develop standards.
The group will consist of Judge McSeveney, Judge Marler, Judge Culp, Mary McQueen and two superior court judges. The group will draft court rule language relating to performance audits of trial courts.
It was moved by Judge Kurtz and seconded by Judge Culp to approve the formation of a group to draft court rule language relating to performance audits of trial courts. The motion passed unanimously.
Judicial Conduct Commission Defense Insurance Plan
Mr. Moore advised that Washington State had been contacted by Utah to consider judges' insurance coverage to pay defense costs incurrent in the defense of claims before the CJC. The Board briefly discussed, agreeing they did not want Mr. Moore to pursue negotiations with Utah.
Mandatory Education Rule
Chief Justice Alexander advised, the mandatory continuing judicial education rule was passed by the Supreme Court. The Court agreed that the appellate court judges should be required to comply with the rule that takes effect July 1, 2002.
Presiding Judges Rule
Chief Justice Alexander advised the presiding judges rule was passed by the Supreme Court with no changes.
Trial Court Coordination Council
Judge Holman reported the presiding judges were notified of the $75,000 available in grant moneys for up to five local trial court coordination projects. The formal Request for Proposal will be released in May. Deadline to submit request is July 1, 2002. The money will be awarded by August 1, with funds being spent by June 30, 2003.
Time for Trial Task Force
Chief Justice Alexander informed the Board that all positions had been filled, except for the House Democratic caucus representative. He advised, the Task Force's first meeting is scheduled for April 26.
Court of Appeals
Judge Kurtz reported, Judge Schultheis is the Presiding Chief Judge and Judge Brown is the Chief Judge for Division III.
Judge Seinfeld reported, Judge Hunt is the Chief Judge of Division II. She also advised that Division II is very current.
Judge Harris reported the Family Law and Juvenile Court Committee has developed a curriculum which will test out in the immediate future. He continued, a response has been received from the public defender regarding the capital punishment rule. Judge Harris advised that the president-elect will be Judge O'Connor from Spokane.
Courts of Limited Jurisdiction
Judge Culp reported that Judge Marler will take office as president during the DMCJA Spring Conference in June.
Access to Justice
Judge Tripp thanked Chief Justice Alexander and Mr. Carlisle for making the trip to Washington, D.C. in a show of support for Access to Justice.
Judge Tripp advised the Board that the first meeting of the Task Force on Civil Equal Justice Funding was held March 20. The Task Force established three subcommittees at the March meeting.
Judge Tripp reminded the Board that the Access to Justice Conference will be held June 7, 8 and 9 in Yakima.
Washington State Bar Association
Mr. Carlisle recognized accomplishments of the judiciary through their lobbyist this past session. He acknowledged the work accomplished by the Bar through their lobbyist.
Mr. Carlisle advised the district court portion of the oath of office would be resubmitted to the Supreme Court.
Names of the new Board of Governors members will be provided at the May BJA meeting. Mr. Carlisle indicated filings for the new president will be accepted until mid-May. Lawyers filing for the president's position must be from Eastern Washington.
Chief Justice Alexander advised the Board of Judge Hogan's resignation as chair of the Best Practices Committee.
There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned.
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