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AD1387939CA4CF2E872583A60070E7E0 Hearing Summary




PUBLIC
BILL SUMMARY For SB19-043

HOUSE COMMITTEE ON JUDICIARY
Date Feb 19, 2019      
Location HCR 0112



SB19-043 - Amended, referred to House Appropriations


01:33:34 PM  

The committee was called to order. A quorum was present. Representatives Herod and Carver, prime sponsors, presented Senate Bill 19-043, concerning an increase in the number of district court judges in certain judicial districts.  Representatives Carver and Herod discussed the need for the legislation. The following persons testified regarding SB 19-043:

Judge Michael Martinez, representing the Second Judicial District, testified in support of the bill. Judge Martinez explained why more judges are needed in certain districts.

Chris Ryan, State Court Administrator with the Judicial Branch, testified in support of the bill. Mr. Ryan explained how his department determines the proper number of judges in each judicial district, and discussed the need for more judges in certain districts. Judge Martinez responded to questions regarding caseload increases in Second Judicial District criminal courts, and the use of magistrates in district court. Discussion ensued on this point. Discussion followed regarding factors driving increased court filings, and plans for managing the increase. Discussion returned to the use of magistrates in district court. Mr. Ryan responded to questions regarding the felony caseload increase in Colorado as compared to other states, and optimum staffing.

02:03:48 PM  

Discussion continued regarding optimum staffing for judicial districts. Mr. Ryan responded to questions regarding accountability surrounding the judges allotted by SB 19-043. Judge Martinez provided additional remarks in support of the bill.

Ms. Megan Ring, Colorado State Public Defender, testified in support of the bill. Ms. Ring discussed a forthcoming amendment, and the increase in court filings that is driving the need for more judges in certain judicial districts.

Ms. Maureen Cain, representing the Office of the State Public Defender (OSPD), testified in support of the bill. Ms. Cain addressed questions raised during earlier discussion pertaining to felony filings. Ms. Ring responded to questions regarding how she manages staffing in her office. Discussion ensued regarding staffing increases for the OSPD under the bill, and trends in certain court filings. Representative Weissman recounted recent history pertaining to increases in judges. Discussion followed regarding the impact of these judge increases on hiring with the OSPD.

02:28:47 PM  

Ms. Ashley Chase, representing the Office of the Child's Representative, testified in support of SB 19-043. Ms. Chase discussed an increase in court filings associated with youth, and court delays associated with a lack of judges.

02:32:57 PM  

Representative Carver explained the effect of amendment L.001 (Attachment A). The committee recessed for a title ruling.



02:35:49 PM
Motion Adopt amendment L.001
Moved Carver
Seconded Tipper
Benavidez No
Bockenfeld Yes
Carver Yes
Galindo Yes
Gonzales-Gutierrez Yes
McKean Yes
Roberts Yes
Sandridge Yes
Tipper Yes
Herod Yes
Weissman Yes
YES: 10   NO: 1   EXC: 0   ABS:  0   FINAL ACTION:  PASS
02:35:50 PM  

The committee returned to order. The chair ruled that amendment L.001 fits under the title of the bill.

02:36:47 PM  

Representative Benavidez explained the effect of amendment L.003 (Attachment B). Discussion ensued regarding the amendment's merits.



02:43:27 PM
Motion Adopt amendment L.003
Moved Benavidez
Seconded Weissman
Benavidez Yes
Bockenfeld No
Carver No
Galindo No
Gonzales-Gutierrez No
McKean No
Roberts No
Sandridge No
Tipper No
Herod No
Weissman No
YES: 1   NO: 10   EXC: 0   ABS:  0   FINAL ACTION:  FAIL
02:43:28 PM  

Representative Benavidez explained the effect of the amendment L.004 (Attachment C). The committee discussed the merits of the amendment.



02:51:43 PM
Motion Adopt amendment L.004 Severed Section A, Page 1, lines 1 through 22 and line 31, as amended to substitute "October" for "November" on lines 5 and 6..
Moved Herod
Seconded Carver
Benavidez
Bockenfeld
Carver
Galindo
Gonzales-Gutierrez
McKean
Roberts
Sandridge
Tipper
Herod
Weissman
YES: 0   NO: 0   EXC: 0   ABS:  0   FINAL ACTION:  Pass Without Objection
02:52:17 PM  

Discussion ensued regarding the severing of amendment L.004.



02:57:50 PM
Motion Adopt amendment L.004 severed section B, page 1, lines 24 through 30.
Moved Benavidez
Seconded Bockenfeld
Benavidez Yes
Bockenfeld Yes
Carver No
Galindo No
Gonzales-Gutierrez No
McKean Yes
Roberts No
Sandridge No
Tipper No
Herod No
Weissman No
YES: 3   NO: 8   EXC: 0   ABS:  0   FINAL ACTION:  FAIL
02:57:51 PM  

Representatives Carver and Herod provided closing remarks in support of SB 19-043. Various committee members provided their positions on the bill.



03:11:20 PM
Motion Refer Senate Bill 19-043, as amended, to the Committee on Appropriations.
Moved Carver
Seconded Herod
Benavidez No
Bockenfeld Yes
Carver Yes
Galindo Yes
Gonzales-Gutierrez Yes
McKean Yes
Roberts Yes
Sandridge Yes
Tipper Yes
Herod Yes
Weissman Yes
Final YES: 10   NO: 1   EXC: 0   ABS:  0   FINAL ACTION:  PASS






The House and Senate are temporarily adjourned.  The building is closed to the public.

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