SB 0870 Certain commissioner positions are eliminated and adds certain judgeships in their place
LR Number:3002S.04I Fiscal Note:3002-04
Last Action:02/09/00 - Hearing Conducted S Judiciary Committee Journal page:
Effective Date:EC for certain sections
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Current Bill Summary

SB 870 - This act eliminates certain existing judicial commissioner positions. Sitting commissioners will continue service until the end of their term of office. At that time, the position is abolished and circuit and associate circuit judgeships are created in their place. The primary jurisdiction of the judge would be in the same division as the commissioner.

The commissioners would continue service until the January first after the next general election following their term expiration, when a judge would be sworn in. In counties that elect judges, the new judgeship would be filled initially by election. In counties subject to the non-partisan court plan, the positions would be initially appointed.

Commissioners eligible to receive retirement benefits at the end of their current term (age 60 with 15 years service) will be allowed to be reappointed in their current positions until death, resignation or removal.

Authorizations for commissioners pursuant to current law are changed to expire January 1, 2006. Authorizations for traffic commissioners, judges acting as traffic commissioners and landlord-tenant commissionerships (available only in Jackson and St. Louis counties) are deleted.

References to procedures and qualifications of commissioners are deleted with rule making power granted to the Supreme Court.

Jackson County, St. Louis County and St. Louis City receive a circuit judgeship for each probate commissionership eliminated. The judges are exempt from court recording and allowed to continue with electronic recording - as the commissioners currently do. Boone County receives one associate circuit judge for the family court commissionership eliminated in that circuit.

An associate circuit judgeship is granted for each circuit court or deputy commissionership eliminated in counties that are whole circuits (Platte, Clay, St. Charles, St. Louis, St. Louis City, Jackson, Cole, Jefferson, Jasper and Greene counties). An associate circuit judgeship is granted for each drug court commissionership eliminated in counties that are whole circuits, or in the largest county in multi-county circuits if the circuit is receiving appropriations for FY2001 for such commissioner.

This act is similar to SB 440 (1999).

This act has an emergency clause.