First interim/off-session judiciary committee hearings set in Virginia and Wyoming

With several state legislatures already out of session, we are starting to see the first interim hearings taking place.

Virginia’s Senate Courts of Justice committee met April 12 to “certify” judges to fill existing vacancies in the state’s courts. (In Virginia, judges are chosen jointly by both houses of the legislature). According to the Virginia Lawyer’s Blog, the Democratic-controlled committee failed to agree on a slate, although the Republicans who control the House announced their preferences for two Supreme Court slots before adjourning until April 25. If no agreements can be reached, the state’s Republican governor would select judges to fill in. Although theoretically such picks made by a governor are subject to rejection by the legislature at their next session, that rarely occurs in practice.

In addition to the Senate action, Virginia’s Committee on District Courts is set to meet April 15 in Richmond. The Committee, made up of 14 members (8 legislators, 6 jurists) discussed the results of the 2011 General Assembly session, court forms, credit card convenience fees, the certification of judicial vacancies, and the Judicial Boundary Realignment Study.

Wyoming’s Joint Judiciary Interim Committee is set to hold its first meeting April 21-22. Agenda topics include Juvenile Justice and a public comment session on April 22.