Bills affecting the courts approved by the Arizona legislature subsequently vetoed by the governor in 2011 included:
SB 1288 Provides “Government shall not deny, suspend or revoke a professional or occupational license, certificate or registration based on a person’s exercise of religion…A person’s exercise of religion is not unprofessional conduct.” Specifies “Government” includes all courts and administrative bodies or entities under the jurisdiction of the Arizona supreme court.”
New laws affecting the courts enacted by the Arizona legislature in 2011, plus a constitutional amendment to appear on the 2012 ballot, include the following:
HB 2064 Defines “foreign law” as “any law, rule or legal code or system other than the constitution, laws and ratified treaties of the united states and the territories of the united states, or the constitution and laws of this state….a court, arbitrator, administrative agency or other adjudicative, mediation or enforcement authority shall not enforce a foreign law if doing so would violate a right guaranteed by the constitution of this state or of the united states or conflict with the laws of the united states or of this state.
HB 2352 Removes the requirement that an appointed court commissioner have engaged in active general practice for at least three years before being appointed. Requires that an appointed commissioner be an Arizona resident for five years before taking office. Increases the term in which an appointed commissioner must have been admitted to practice law in Arizona from three to five years.
HB 2355 Redefines for budget and other purposes various assessments as surcharges.
HB 2424 Establishes a panel that must study ways to improve guardianship and conservatorship laws through statutory changes.
SB 1192 Requires supreme court select a nationally recognized independent research organization to review and assess the methodology used in creating the child outcome based support model for child support and the effect that model would have on child support for families in this state if that model were adopted.
SB 1472 For retention elections, adds a listing to voter pamphlet distributed prior to election of a judge’s biography and published decisions which declared a statute unconstitutional and the provision of the Constitution relied upon.
SB 1482 Requires the Commission on Judicial Performance Review to prepare and publish on its website a list of decisions that an appellate judge made, including the official citations and electronic copies of the decision, no later than 60 days prior to the primary election for the judge’s retention.
SB 1499 Requires that a judicial officer presiding guardianship/conservatorship proceedings take part in training as prescribed by the Supreme Court.
SB 1621 Provides “the designated post of duty of a justice of the supreme court who resides outside of Maricopa County shall be deemed to be the justice’s place of permanent physical residence at the time of the justice’s appointment.”
- Qualifications & Terms- Increases to 8 years the term of office for Supreme, Court of Appeals, and Superior Court judges starting in 2013. Increases the judicial retirement age from 70 to 75 years old.
- Appellate and Trial Court Commissions- Removes the requirement that attorney members be nominated by the Board of Governors of the Arizona State Bar. Establishes that four attorney members be appointed by the Governor and one member be appointed by the President of the State Bar. Requires, upon an attorney member vacancy, the Arizona bar to solicit, review and forward to the Governor all applications and recommendations for appointment. Increases the time period attorney members must be admitted to practice from 5 to 10 years. Specifies that attorney members must be in good standing with the state bar, have no formal disciplinary complaints and have never been formally sanctioned as a result of disciplinary action. Requires the Commissions to submit at least eight nominees, rather than three, to the Governor to fill a vacancy in the office of a justice or judge of the Supreme Court, Appellate Court or superior court. Permits the Commissions to reject an applicant and submit less than eight nominees, unless the applicant receives a two-thirds vote. Requires the Commissions to nominate any applicant who receives a majority vote. Requires, if more than one vacancy exists in the same court at the same time, the Commissions to submit the names of at least six persons nominated to fill each vacancy and prohibits the submission of the name of the same person for more than one vacancy. Permits the Governor to make an appointment from any of the nominees presented for any of the vacancies in that court, if more than one vacancy exists in the same court at the same time.
- Supreme Court- Must make available through its website, every written opinion or order that is issued by a judge of a court of record that resolves a contested matter of law and that is not sealed or confidential. Must transmit a copy of the judicial performance review of each justice and judge who is up for retention to the Senate President and the Speaker of the House of Representatives at least 60 days before the regular primary election.
- Legislature- Permits a joint legislative committee consisting of the Senate and House Judiciary committees to meet and take testimony on the justices and judges who are up for retention at least 60 days prior to the general election.