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A04908 Summary:

BILL NOA04908
 
SAME ASSAME AS S04398
 
SPONSORLavine
 
COSPNSRBichotte Hermelyn
 
MLTSPNSR
 
Amd 42, 44, 45 & 47, Judy L
 
Requires the state commission on judicial conduct to transmit its annual budget request to the governor for inclusion in the executive budget without revision; relates to complaints regarding judges and confidentiality of records; extends the jurisdiction of the state commission on judicial conduct as to judges who resign or retire while under investigation or formal charges.
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A04908 Actions:

BILL NOA04908
 
02/24/2023referred to judiciary
01/03/2024referred to judiciary
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A04908 Text:



 
                STATE OF NEW YORK
        ________________________________________________________________________
 
                                          4908
 
                               2023-2024 Regular Sessions
 
                   IN ASSEMBLY
 
                                    February 24, 2023
                                       ___________
 
        Introduced by M. of A. LAVINE -- read once and referred to the Committee
          on Judiciary
 
        AN  ACT  to  amend the judiciary law, in relation to requiring the state
          commission on judicial conduct to transmit its annual  budget  request
          to  the  governor  for  inclusion  in  the  executive  budget  without
          revision; to complaints regarding judges; and to extending the  juris-
          diction  of  the state commission on judicial conduct as to judges who
          resign or retire while under investigation or formal charges
 
          The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and  Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
 
     1    Section 1.  Section 42 of the judiciary law is amended by adding a new
     2  subdivision 7 to read as follows:
     3    7. To transmit its annual budget request to the governor for inclusion
     4  in the executive budget without revision but with such recommendation as
     5  the governor may deem proper.
     6    §  2.  Subdivision  4  of section 44 of the judiciary law, as added by
     7  chapter 156 of the laws of 1978, is amended to read as follows:
     8    4. If in the course of an  investigation,  the  commission  determines
     9  that  a  hearing  is  warranted  it  shall  direct that a formal written
    10  complaint signed and verified by the administrator be drawn  and  served
    11  upon  the judge involved, either personally or by certified mail, return
    12  receipt requested. The judge shall file a written answer  to  the  [the]
    13  formal  written complaint with the commission within twenty days of such
    14  service. The formal written complaint and  answer,  and  the  record  of
    15  proceedings thereafter, including the hearing and any proceedings before
    16  the commission, shall be public. If, upon receipt of the answer, or upon
    17  expiration  of  the  time  to answer, the commission shall direct that a
    18  hearing be held with respect to the formal written complaint, the  judge
    19  involved  shall be notified in writing of the date of the hearing either
    20  personally, at least twenty days prior thereto, or  by  certified  mail,
    21  return  receipt  requested, at least twenty-two days prior thereto. Upon
 
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                                   LBD09076-01-3

        A. 4908                             2
 
     1  the written request of the judge, the commission shall,  at  least  five
     2  days  prior to the hearing or any adjourned date thereof, make available
     3  to the judge without cost copies of all documents which  the  commission
     4  intends  to  present  at such hearing and any written statements made by
     5  witnesses who will be called to give testimony by  the  commission.  The
     6  commission shall, in any case, make available to the judge at least five
     7  days  prior to the hearing or any adjourned date thereof any exculpatory
     8  evidentiary data and material relevant to the formal written  complaint.
     9  The  failure  of  the commission to timely furnish any documents, state-
    10  ments and/or exculpatory evidentiary  data  and  material  provided  for
    11  herein  shall  not  affect  the  validity  of any proceedings before the
    12  commission provided that such failure is not  substantially  prejudicial
    13  to  the judge. The complainant may be notified of the hearing and unless
    14  he shall be subpoenaed as a witness by the judge, his  presence  thereat
    15  shall be within the discretion of the commission. [The hearing shall not
    16  be  public unless the judge involved shall so demand in writing.] At the
    17  hearing the commission may take the testimony of witnesses  and  receive
    18  evidentiary  data and material relevant to the formal written complaint.
    19  The judge shall have the right to be represented by counsel  during  any
    20  and  all  stages  of  the  hearing  and shall have the right to call and
    21  cross-examine witnesses and present evidentiary data and material  rele-
    22  vant  to  the formal written complaint.  A transcript of the proceedings
    23  and of the testimony of witnesses at the hearing shall be taken and kept
    24  with the records of the commission.
    25    § 3. Section 45 of the judiciary law, as amended by chapter 35 of  the
    26  laws of 1983, is amended to read as follows:
    27    § 45. Confidentiality of records. [1.] Except as hereinafter provided,
    28  all  complaints,  correspondence, commission proceedings and transcripts
    29  thereof, other papers and data and records of the  commission  shall  be
    30  confidential and shall not be made available to any person except pursu-
    31  ant to section forty-four of this article. The commission and its desig-
    32  nated  staff personnel shall have access to confidential material in the
    33  performance of their powers and duties. If the judge who is the  subject
    34  of  a  complaint  so  requests  in  writing, copies of [the] any pending
    35  complaint, [the transcripts of hearings by the  commission  thereon,  if
    36  any]  any  documents  made public pursuant to section forty-four of this
    37  article, and the dispositive action of the commission  with  respect  to
    38  [the]  any  complaint  resulting  in  a  caution,  admonition,  censure,
    39  removal, retirement, or resignation from judicial  office,  such  copies
    40  with any reference to the identity of any person who did not participate
    41  at any such hearing suitably deleted therefrom, except the subject judge
    42  or  complainant,  shall  be made available for inspection and copying to
    43  the public, or to any person, agency or body designated by such judge.
    44    [2. Notwithstanding any provision in  this  section,  the  commission,
    45  with  the  consent  of  the  applicant,  shall provide the record of any
    46  proceeding pursuant to a formal written complaint against  an  applicant
    47  for  judicial appointment in which the applicant's misconduct was estab-
    48  lished, any pending complaint against an applicant, and  the  record  to
    49  date  of  any  pending proceeding pursuant to a formal written complaint
    50  against an applicant for judicial appointment:
    51    (a) to the commission on judicial nomination  established  by  article
    52  three-A  of  this chapter, with respect to applicants for appointment to
    53  the court of appeals;
    54    (b) to the governor with respect to all applicants whom  the  governor
    55  indicates are under consideration for any judicial appointment; and

        A. 4908                             3

     1    (c)  to  the temporary president of the senate and the chairman of the
     2  senate judiciary committee with respect to  all  nominees  for  judicial
     3  appointments which are subject to the advice and consent of the senate.]
     4  The  commission  shall  respond within fifteen days of a request for the
     5  information provided for in this [subdivision] section.
     6    §  4.  Section 47 of the judiciary law, as added by chapter 156 of the
     7  laws of 1978, is amended to read as follows:
     8    § 47. Resignation or retirement not to divest commission or  court  of
     9  appeals  of  jurisdiction.  The jurisdiction of the court of appeals and
    10  the commission pursuant to this article shall  continue  notwithstanding
    11  that  a  judge  resigns or retires from office after a [determination of
    12  the commission that the judge be removed from office has been  transmit-
    13  ted  to  the  chief  judge  of  the  court  of  appeals,] formal written
    14  complaint authorized pursuant to section forty-four of this article  has
    15  been  served  on  the  judge  or  in any case in which the [commission's
    16  determination that a judge should be removed from office shall be trans-
    17  mitted to the chief judge of  the  court  of  apppeals]  formal  written
    18  complaint  is  served  on the judge within one hundred twenty days after
    19  receipt by the chief administrator of the courts of the  resignation  or
    20  retirement  of  such  judge.   Any determination by the court of appeals
    21  that a judge who has resigned or retired should be removed  from  office
    22  shall  render  such  judge ineligible to hold any other judicial office.
    23  The chief administrator of the courts shall give written notice  to  the
    24  commission  of  the  resignation  or  retirement of any judge who is the
    25  subject of an investigation within five days after his receipt thereof.
    26    § 5. This act shall take effect immediately.
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