Judicial reforms are key to restoring the public’s confidence in the judiciary and ensuring the courts are fully functioning.
The Pa Judicial reform package has been a long time coming, and we are now on the verge of passing the first law to restore public confidence in our courts.
The law will also provide greater transparency and accountability to the judicial system.
The Pennsylvania Judicial Reform Act (PRRA) was passed in 2017 and has been endorsed by the Judicial Conference of Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, and the state’s largest judges’ association.
The PRRA was designed to provide judges more independence and more power, with specific protections for women and the elderly.
It also requires judges to make all their decisions by a jury of their peers.
This ensures fairness for all parties in all cases.
It will also protect Pennsylvania taxpayers by requiring judges to provide public funding for the costs of the trial, as well as the public benefits.
The PA Judicial Reform Law is designed to help Pennsylvania judges meet their responsibility to uphold the Constitution.
The bill is a comprehensive set of reforms designed to ensure that our judicial system remains independent and fair.
It includes: The creation of an independent commission to study the state of Pennsylvania’s judicial system and to identify any problems or issues that might arise.
The commission would also be tasked with creating a roadmap to implement the reforms.
The legislature would be tasked to develop the plan for the commission.
A statewide training program for judges, lawyers, and judges and prosecutors, with the goal of increasing the number of Pennsylvania judges and attorneys.
The commission would be charged with gathering information about the public perception of our judiciary and identifying barriers to participation.
The training would provide guidance on how to build trust in our judicial process and improve the quality of our judicial service.
Providing a mandatory minimum of two years for a judge to resign or be removed from office.
Ensuring that judges are fully vetted, and that they have the tools and experience to serve the public and state, in order to ensure they are able to effectively perform their duties.
Requiring judges to serve on the Judicial Council and a statewide advisory board, which would have oversight of judicial personnel.
Restricting judges to six years on their terms and allowing judges to be removed for misconduct.
Protecting the independence and integrity of the courts by ensuring that judges receive at least the minimum legal education required by the Pennsylvania Code of Judicial Ethics.
Creating a public advocate who will provide advice to the public, including in regards to legal issues, as required by Pennsylvania’s Code of Ethics.
It is critical that we are vigilant about our judiciary in the face of new threats to our judicial independence, transparency, and fairness.
This bill has the potential to restore confidence in Pennsylvania’s judiciary.
Governor Tom Wolf and Governor Corbett must take action now to enact these important reforms to the Pennsylvania Judicial System, to restore the public confidence, and to provide the accountability that the public deserves.
“I am grateful for the support of the judiciary, the people, and for the law that we live by,” Wolf said.
“As governor of the great state of PA, I have worked tirelessly to improve our courts and ensure that we have a functioning judicial system that serves all parties and that all the people are safe from frivolous litigation and improper proceedings.
We have been fortunate in the past and will be fortunate in this administration.
The people of Pennsylvania are entitled to a fair and impartial legal system, and I want to ensure this continues.”
The Pennsylvania Supreme Judicial Court is the state supreme court and is charged with the responsibility of upholding Pennsylvania’s Constitution, laws, and statutes.
The court was established in 1790 and is the largest judicial body in the Commonwealth.
The justices’ role is to uphold and defend Pennsylvania’s laws, policies, and constitution, as they relate to the state, its people, its interests, and its Constitution.
Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court is also the most prestigious judicial body for the state.
The state legislature is responsible for electing justices to the court.