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5 Document(s) [ Subject: Judges ]

Committee: House Judiciary and Civil Jurisprudence
Title: Interim Report
Subjects: Employers | Environmental protection | Ex-offenders | Gubernatorial appointments | Judges | Landlords and tenants | Lawsuits | Liability | Term limits | Uniform Electronic Legal Materials Act | Wills and estates |
Library Call Number: L1836.83 J898
Session: 83rd R.S. (2013)
Online version: View report [97 pages]
Charges: This report should address the charges below.
1. Examine the constitutional qualifications and term lengths for appellate court judges, and consider whether changes would benefit the public and the judiciary.
2. Study the potential issues involving civil liability for interacting with ex-offenders. In particular, examine the implications of HB 1188 (83R) and the potential expansion of similar protections to landlords.
3. Review the methods used by state agencies and courts to prepare and publish electronic legal materials. Examine the processes used to ensure reliability and permanence of these materials and strategies used to harmonize those processes with national standards, including possible adoption of the Uniform Electronic Legal Materials Act.
4. Study issues that inhibit the use of wills and access to the probate process in Texas, particularly for low-income individuals.
5. Examine the public policy implications of litigation related to environmental contamination brought by local governments, in particular whether such litigation supports effective remediation.
6. Study the issue of whether Regional Presiding Judges should be appointed by the Chief Justice rather than the Governor.
7. Conduct legislative oversight and monitoring of the agencies and programs under the committee’s jurisdiction and the implementation of relevant legislation passed by the 83rd Legislature. In conducting this oversight, the committee should: a. consider any reforms to state agencies to make them more responsive to Texas taxpayers and citizens; b. identify issues regarding the agency or its governance that may be appropriate to investigate, improve, remedy, or eliminate; c. determine whether an agency is operating in a transparent and efficient manner; and d. identify opportunities to streamline programs and services while maintaining the mission of the agency and its programs.
Committee: Senate Jurisprudence
Title: Interim Report
Library Catalog Title: Senate Committee on Jurisprudence interim report
Subjects: Adoption | Air pollution control technology | Child abuse | Child custody | Children's Advocacy Centers | Extraterritorial jurisdiction | Grandparents | Houston, Texas | Judges | Juries | Medical records | Occupational licenses | Parents | Private investigators | Probate courts | Records management | Rules of evidence | Texas Code of Criminal Procedure | Visitation rights |
Library Call Number: L1836.80 J979
Session: 80th R.S. (2007)
Online version: View report [161 pages  File size: 5,386 kb]
Charges: This report should address the charges below.
1. Study the laws governing suits affecting the parent-child relationship involving non-parents, including suits for possession of or access to a child by a grandparent, and make recommendations for providing the best care and protection for the children involved. Provide an assessment of the constitutional issues involved with these suits.
2. Study the management and storage of adoption records, including the costs and benefits of converting records into digital format. Study ways to increase access by adopted persons and their children and spouses to important family medical history information and ensure that medical history information is updated, while maintaining privacy and anonymity of records.
3. Examine the role of heir finders in Texas and make recommendations regarding professional standards and fees for heir finders.
4. Identify and study best practices for representation of children in child abuse and neglect cases and determine whether to implement further training, oversight, or other requirements for judges, attorneys, and others responsible for child abuse and neglect cases, including child sexual abuse cases. Develop and implement tools for children’s advocacy centers (CACs) and prosecutors to successfully investigate and prosecute child abusers. Include the following:
  • Explore changes to the rules of evidence that could facilitate the presentation of child testimony in court;
  • Explore making prior extraneous sex offenses admissible during determination of guilt, as has been adopted in the federal court system; and
  • Explore possible expansion of the rules regarding how cases are consolidated and punishments are stacked in a single trial involving a crime committed against a child.
5. Study practices intended to enhance the jury experience and increase jury participation, including:
  • allowing jurors to ask questions of witnesses by submitting them to the judge in writing;
  • allowing lawyers to periodically summarize testimony for the jury;
  • allowing jurors to take notes during trial; and
  • allowing jurors to discuss evidence among themselves during trial.
6. Study and make recommendations relating to the jurisdiction, authority, power and discretion of probate judges in Texas, including the authority of a probate judge to intervene in a non-probate case.
7. Study administrative and legal procedures used by municipalities to exert regulatory authority beyond city limits and extraterritorial jurisdiction. Determine whether conflicts exist with agencies' regulatory authority and regulatory authority delegated to home-rule municipalities, and make recommendations for appropriate delegation and clarification of respective authorities.
8. Monitor the implementation of legislation addressed by the Jurisprudence Committee, 80th Legislature, Regular Session, and make recommendations for any legislation needed to improve, enhance, and/or complete implementation.
Committee: Senate Jurisprudence
Title: Interim Report
Library Catalog Title: Senate Committee on Jurisprudence interim report : report to the 78th Legislature.
Subjects: Child crimes | Court costs and fees | Judges | Judicial districts | Juvenile crime | Juvenile justice system | Progressive sanctions (Criminal justice) | Racial profiling | Redistricting | Trial courts |
Library Call Number: L1836.77 j979
Session: 77th R.S. (2001)
Online version: View report [89 pages  File size: 1,687 kb]
Charges: This report should address the charges below.
1. Study the effectiveness of the progressive sanction guidelines for juvenile offenders. Determine whether the guidelines established by HB 327, 74th Legislature, Regular Session, are bringing consistency, uniformity, and predictability to juvenile dispositions in an effort to facilitate juvenile justice planning and improve the allocation of resources within the juvenile justice system. The Committee shall make recommendations for improving the effectiveness of juveniles sanctions in protecting public safety and rehabilitating offenders.
2. Study the judicial system's revenue structure and make recommendations for improving the collection, dispersal, and accounting of court costs, fees, and fines by state and local entities. This study should include a review of all court costs and fees (except those related to the Crime Victims' Compensation Fund) to ensure that they are necessary and are adequately fulfilling their intended purpose.
3. Study and make recommendations for the reapportionment of judicial districts pursuant to Article V, Section 7a, Texas Constitution.
4. Study and make recommendations for improving the structure of the state's trial court system, including, but not limited to: improving the quality, cost-effectiveness, and uniformity of the visiting judge program; devising objective criteria to be used by the Legislature to determine when and where additional trial courts should be created; and clarifying jurisdictional conflicts between courts.
5. Monitor the implementation of SB 1074, 77th Legislature, Regular Session, relating to the prevention of racial profiling by certain peace officers.
Committee: House Judicial Affairs
Title: Interim Report
Library Catalog Title: Interim report of the Judicial Affairs Committee, Texas House of Representatives, the sixty-eighth legislative session.
Subjects: Alternative dispute resolution | Appellate courts | County courts | Court congestion | District courts | Judges | Sovereign immunity | Trial courts |
Library Call Number: L1836.67 j897
Session: 67th R.S. (1981)
Online version: View report [148 pages  File size: 4,608 kb]
Charges: This report should address the charges below.
1. Analyze, in cooperation with the Office of Court Administration of the Texas Judicial System, comparative needs related to court clerks, briefing attorneys, legal counselors, legal secretaries, and other specialized staff to study personnel needs of each of Texas' 14 courts of appeals.
2. Investigate existing neighborhood dispute centers and report on their operations.
3. Examine the current procedures used for resolutions to sue the state to determine if specific guidelines should be implemented.
4. Study the alternative of creating a unified county courts at law system.
5. Examine Texas' visiting judge program to determine if changes are necessary.
6. Study methods to help equalize the caseloads of district judges in urban areas.
7. Examine methods of reducing trial court delay.
Committee: Senate Judiciary
Title: Report - Thurmond Resignation
Library Catalog Title: Report
Subjects: Gubernatorial appointments | Judges | Judicial ethics | Public officials' resignations |
Library Call Number: S.J. of Tex., 12th Leg., R.S. 294 (1871)
Session: 12th 1st C.S. (1870)
Online version: View report [8 pages  File size: 4 kb]
Charge: This report should address the charge below.
1. Investigate question of whether J.M. Thurmond has resigned as judge of the 31st Judicial District.

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