House committee to vote on new judge position

Juneau, Alaska (KINY) The Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to vote Wednesday on a law change to allow a superior court judge in Juneau.

They could change one district judge to a superior court judge. A Superior Court judge has jurisdiction over anything that is filed while a district judge has limited jurisdiction.

Nancy Meade, General Counsel for the Alaska Court system said they need a new judge in Juneau, "The Juneau superior court is overburdened with case work relative to the number of judges and it has been this way for a number of years."

Currently courts in Juneau have the second highest rate of court filings, behind only Anchorage, in the state.

Meade said that means there are too many cases for the existing judges to handle, "The court is overburdened.  Despite the judges best efforts cases are slowed down and delayed.  It is difficult to schedule hearings.  The written work products are taking longer than the court system is comfortable with."

There is a district judge retiring this year.  The judiciary proposes to turn that position into a Superior Court judge.  They plan to absorb the additional salary, of $35,000 annually, with existing funds.

 

 

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