“People don’t know what they’re doing when they vote for judges. Judges are not permitted to really campaign, not permitted to talk about how they would rule on things and they can’t talk partisan politics,” said Del. Jon Cardin, D-Baltimore County. “They’re not allowed to by their rules and so essentially it is a name contest — whosever name you like the best is who you vote for. And that is not the way that we should be picking our judiciary.”Read More
Court of Appeals Chief Judge Mary Ellen Barbera told the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee Thursday that there are not enough Circuit and District judges in Maryland, which has resulted in courts being overloaded with cases. Barbera testified in favor of SB 117, a bill the judiciary asked for that would add a total of 13 judges around the state at a total estimated cost of $4.1 million including support staff in its first year. The judiciary has included $3.8 million in the fiscal 2017 budget to pay for the new judges.Read More
A judicial pension bill came down to the wire Monday night and passed the General Assembly just minutes before the official end of the 2012 legislative session. Judges will now pay 8% of their salaries, up from 6%.Read More
A vote on a proposed constitutional amendment to raise the mandatory retirement age of judges from 70 to 72 has been put on hold until Friday, when floor amendments will be offered.Read More
A proposal to raise judges’ salaries by $29,000 got a cool response from members of the House Appropriations Committee, who must vote on it or let the raises take effect automatically in 50 days.Read More
The Judicial Compensation Commission unanimously voted to recommend that the General Assembly increase judges’ salaries by $29,006 phased in over three years and starting in fiscal year 2014 — similar to last year’s recommendation for a higher raise that the legislature rejected unanimously.Read More
When adjusted for cost of living, Maryland’s judges are some of the worst paid in the nation, according to a study from the National Center for State Courts. The study, released last week, ranks trial court judges’ adjusted salaries at 43rd in the nation.Read More
With terms ranging from 10 to 15 years – and then the potential of staying on the bench for several terms after that – the judges a governor selects could make a lasting impression on the state and its laws.
For all of the state’s courts, a nominating commission vets people who apply to be judges. The top picks are presented to the governor, who does his own investigation and makes his selection. For circuit court judges, the governor’s selection is checked by putting those judges — plus other attorneys interested in the position — on the ballot after at least a year of service for the people to vote on.Read More
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