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Utah: Senate approves bill to overhaul state's judicial selection/nominating commissions

A review of state legislation affecting the courts

February 24, 2023 -- Since 2006, Gavel to Gavel has tracked state-by-state legislative activity with potential impact on state courts.

Notable legislation includes:

  • Utah: Senate approves bill to overhaul state's judicial selection/nominating commissions, expanding governor's power to select commission members with no role for state's bar; plans to reduce state's 8 judicial districts to 3 appear to have been dropped.
  • Montana legislature considers more legislation focused on the state's judiciary: bills would declare Marbury v. Madison misinterpreted, ends most judicial elections in the state and allows House to appoint judges subject to Senate confirmation. An effort to reduce the state’s supreme court from 7 justices to 5 approved in committee but killed on the Senate floor 24-26.
  • Court security: bills to protect judges' home addresses and other information advance in Idaho, Missouri, New Mexico, and Virginia.
  • Indiana House unanimously approves constitutional amendment to allow city or town court judges to reside in the county in which their court is located or the closest bordering county to the court.
  • Maryland Senate committee approves 10-0 plan to make Orphan's Court races nonpartisan.
  • Oregon House approves bill authorizing the Chief Justice and the Oregon State Bar to gather and analyze demographic information they may obtain from parties and other persons.
  • Virginia House and Senate advance bills to expand public disclosure of Judicial Inquiry and Review Commission proceedings and data.