Week ahead: Kansas looks at paying for e-filing; Tennessee examines merit selection, judicial discipline, prohibiting people who owe the courts money from filing suits

Legislatures Coming Into Session

Louisiana 3/12

Legislatures Going Out of Session

Arkansas 3/12 (actual adjournment may by 3/9)
Indiana 3/14

Floor/Committee Activity of Note

March 12

Kansas House Committee on Appropriations

SB 425 Authorizes the imposition of a charge to fund the cost of establishing, operating and maintaining an electronic document filing, storage, and management system for the Kansas court system. Provides that a fee could be charged for electronic case filing, motion filing, record access, and document access. Provides fees be remitted to the State Treasurer who would deposit the entire amount into the Judiciary Technology Fund. Stipulates that the monies credited to the Judiciary Technology Fund could not be used for compensation of justices or judges of the Supreme Court and expands the currently existing statutory purposes for the Fund to include establishing, operating and maintaining a statewide system of electronic case filing, record access, and document access. Approved by Senate Committee on Judiciary 2/21/12. Approved by full Senate 2/23/12.

March 13

Tennessee House Judiciary Committee

HB 2978 Clarifies to which judges certain financial disclosure laws apply. Clarifies that newly elected judges may practice law to wind up their practice.

Tennessee Senate Judiciary Committee

SB 2671 Abolishes the court of judiciary. Creates 16-member board of judicial conduct. Changes the burden of proof to investigate a judge to probable cause that misconduct occurred from substantial likelihood that it did. Approved by Senate Committee on Government Operations 2/1/12.

SB 2769 Authorizes collection of criminal court fines, costs and litigation taxes in same manner as civil debt. Approved by Senate State & Local Government Committee 2/7/12.

SJR 23 (Constitutional Amendment) Requires popular election of attorney general (currently selected by supreme court).

Tennessee Senate State & Local Committee, General Subcommittee

SB 2686 Authorizes clerks with electronic filing systems to charge $120 for each registered user of the system and to institute an 8-cent per page copy transaction fee.

March 14

Alabama Senate Constitution, Campaign Finance, Ethics, and Elections Committee

SB 17 (Constitutional Amendment) Permits recall of all elected officials, including judges.

Tennessee House Government Operations Committee

HB 2935 Abolishes the court of judiciary. Creates 16-member board of judicial conduct. Changes the burden of proof to investigate a judge to probable cause that misconduct occurred from substantial likelihood that it did. Approved by House Judiciary Subcommittee 2/15/12.

Tennessee House Judiciary Committee, General Subcommittee

HB 3034 Prohibits a court clerk from accepting the filing of another claim by a litigant who owes fees, taxes, costs and other expenses unless the litigant seeks injunctive relief to prevent irreparable injury or serious physical harm to the litigant.

HB 3282 Allows members of the judicial nominating commission to serve successive terms. Allows solicitor general and employees of the attorney general to serve on the commission. Allows members to participate in meetings by telephone if three or fewer applicants. Allows members continuance in court hearings if commission meeting scheduled

Tennessee House State & Local Committee, General Subcommittee

HB 3051 Authorizes clerks with electronic filing systems to charge $120 for each registered user of the system and to institute an 8-cent per page copy transaction fee.

March 15

March 16