Who's your choice for Mayor in 2015?

Monday, November 13, 2006

OK, let's talk about this for a minute....

What, you may ask? Well, it's the idea that we need a SECOND Juvenile Court Judge in Shelby County.

Now, Commissioner Deidre Malone is absolutely correct when she notes that the Legislature authorized the second position way back in 1967. However, I suspect this was because they had an idea that the person likely to be elected as Judge, Kenneth Turner, was NOT a practicing attorney. This would have been to create a new position in case anyone challenged the idea of a Judge who was not an attorney.

Again, I'm tickled beyond words that we have a majority on the County Commission, but I am concerned that we are spending our political capital unwisely. I voted for Veronica Coleman, too, but this does not necessarily mean we need to fill that extra position now, especially since we now HAVE a practicing attorney, Curtis Person, holding that office.

This space stands open for Commissioner Malone, or any of the other Democrats, to put up a post explaining WHY this is necessary.

We finally got control of the Commission, folks, let's be careful out there.

UPDATE, hat tip to SgtLarry: Apparently Smart City Memphis had been having a similar discussion, and newly elected Commissioners Mike Carpenter and Steve Mulroy explain the reasoning for a new judicial position, go read it HERE.



8 comments:

Anonymous said...

I created a listserve email today so people could send an email to all county commissioners. (It's on the blog and on the webpage )The budget and the commissioner's desire to write checks when there's no money in the bank prompted me to create this link. There's also a png file that I would love to see propagated all over Memphis regarding being 2 billion in debt. Thaddeus has it on his blog tonight and it's on mine too. Click here

With a debt of over TWO BILLION dollars, they commissioners need to start looking at ways to consolidate and cut costs, not expand. We also don't need to spend another 200 million on a new jail that would probably cost 300 million (if they say 200, it will be 300).

SgtLarry said...

Jump on over to Smart City Memphis and see the comments already posted there by two commissioners and others.

Brad Watkins said...

Thanks for getting the word out, I was concered that this would fall through the cracks.
I am still unsure of how this solution really helps the over all problems at JC.

Bill Giannini said...

Cracker,
Thanks for your post on the Juvenile Court issue. There is no democrat or republican way to run the juvenile court. The experts tell me that what is needed are additional referees (which would be funded in part by state dollars-60 percent if memory serves me) rather than a new judge,which would be county dollars only. We all want what is best for the court and I believe we should expect our county commission to do a thorough, objective study outlining the needs, costs, and possible solutions.
Without this, it is impossible and certainly irresponsible for the commission to do anything less.While we may disagree on many issues, as a regular reader of your blog, I am pleased to post a response to an issue we agree upon! Thanks.

Bill Giannini

LeftWingCracker said...

You will also note, I hope, that Chairman Ford appointed Commissioner Carpenter to chair the Committee to review this situation, reaching across the aisle in a show of bipartisanship!

WellInformedLady said...

I think that a lot of people are focusing on the money and that is understandable. But what about these questions. Why is this the only court in the County with just one judge/a monarchy so to speak. Also, if a judge would sit on the bench, the docket would move much faster. Why shouldn't this judge sit on the bench, why is this judgship still viewed as primarily administrative? There is a very large turnover of staff at juvenile court so the court never has a full staff. There are tons of problems at the court, like children waiting three years to be legitimated. How does this delay help the taxpayers? Shelby County ranks as the second lowest county in collections of child support when the percentages are looked at (ie: amount due vs. amount collected). Shelby county child support caseworkers have a much larger caseload than any other child support caseworkers across the state. Those are all serious issues that need to be addressed/ changed if the court is to be more effecient. There are also problems in other areas of the court, like probation. They are just not getting the media attention. For example why are so many children being referred to adult court? The increase in serious crimes is far less than the increase of referrals to adult court? Why? There are more than enough issues that need correcting to keep two judges busy, on the bench and off the bench.

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