NJSBA president comments on municipal courts report from Judiciary

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July 17, 2018
Contact: Paula Saha
Director of Communications and Media Relations
NEW BRUNSWICK - NJSBA President John E. Keefe Jr. said a report out today from the Judiciary about the state’s municipal courts contained common sense recommendations that would result in a more transparent and less financial driven municipal court system, which would be a benefit to the public and profession. Many of the recommendations dovetail with suggestions the NJSBA had made.
Statement of NJSBA President John E. Keefe Jr.:
These proposals are very good news for the people of New Jersey, as well as the profession. Recommendations to have a more transparent and less financially driven municipal court system will make a substantial difference in improving the independence of the state’s municipal courts.
Proposals to offer information for defendants in plain language, to further separate the municipal courts from intrusions of the other branches of government and establish a uniform judicial appointment process are among the many common-sense proposals that will fortify the fair administration of justice. In particular, establishing a uniform and transparent judicial appointment process will elevate the experience of the public, who can come to court to have their case resolved knowing local politics and financial pressures are not driving the judicial process.
The New Jersey State Bar Association has studied and been an advocate for judicial independence in our state’s courts, including the municipal courts, since 2013 and is pleased that many of the suggestions and recommendations for change and legislative action dovetail with those made by the association. We stand ready to be an active participant, if called upon, in the suggested working group to marshal these changes into being.