Judicial Council Meeting Minutes


November 27, 2000
Matheson Courthouse, Council Room
Salt Lake City, Utah
Chief Justice Richard C. Howe, Presiding

Members Present: Staff Present:
Chief Justice Richard C. Howe 
Hon. Lyle Anderson
Hon. Russell Bench 
Hon. Lynn Davis 
Hon. L. A. Dever 
Hon. Ben Hadfield
Hon. Ronald Hare
Hon. Gerald Jensen 
Hon. Scott Johansen 
Hon. Debra Moore, esq. 
Hon. Clair Poulson 
Hon. Anne M. Stirba
Hon. Andrew Valdez 
Hon. Michael J. Wilkins
Daniel J. Becker
Myron K. March
D. Mark Jones
Ray Wahl
Matty Branch
Richard H. Schwermer
Holly Bullen
Tim Shea
Brent Johnson
AnNicole J. Faeth

Lane Beattie, State Olympic Director
Jeff Hunt, Parr, Waddoups, Brown, Gee & Loveless
Michael O'Brien, Jones, Waldo, Holbrook, & McDonough
Stephen Hunt, Salt Lake Tribune
Ryan Harris, Jones, Waldo, Holbrook, & McDonough
Paul Murphy, KTVX News
Jenifer Nii, Deseret News

Welcome and Approval of Minutes:

Chief Justice Howe welcomed everyone in attendance. The minutes of the Council's October meeting were discussed. It was mentioned that the minutes needed to be changed to reflect that Judge Hare and Debra Moore were in attendance.


Judge Stirba made a motion that, in order to maintain consistency, the Council's October minutes should indicate that a motion was made without reference to who made the motion. The motion was seconded and carried unanimously.

A question was raised regarding a motion on page eight of the October minutes. The minutes, as written, indicate that the Council referred a matter to Policy and Planning rather than the Judicial Performance Evaluation Committee. A number of the Council member's recalled the matter actually being referred to Judicial Performance Evaluation, not Policy and Planning.


Justice Wilkins made a motion to approve the minutes of the Council's October meeting with the above mentioned corrections. The motion was seconded and carried unanimously.

Report from Chairman:

Chief Justice Howe reported that Judge Homer Wilkinson has announced his retirement, effective January 27, 2001. An announcement of judicial vacancy has been distributed, with a closing date of December 18th, 2000.


Policy and Planning:

Judge Scott Johansen reported that the Policy and Planning Committee met with the Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers regarding a requested rule change to have an automatic stay with appeals from the Justice Court to the District Court. Policy and Planning has asked for a report from the Justice Court Administrator on this issue. All other items discussed by Policy and Planning are on the Council's consent calendar.

Management Committee:

Judge Anne Stirba reported that the following items were discussed at the last Management Committee meeting:

Liaison Committee:

The Liaison Committee will be holding meetings on Fridays from noon until two p.m. for the next few months. At the last meeting, the committee reviewed judicial retention election amendments, and discussed adding justice court judges to the retention election bill and the voter information pamphlet. A new juvenile court bill was also addressed in the meeting, regarding the expungement of records.

The Bar Association:

The Bar Association will be mailing the Multi-disciplinary Task Force report soon to all active Bar members with an article included in the next Bar Journal. Also, the Bar Association is in the process of planning a cultural competency training program.

Administrator's Report:


Judge Bench made a motion to refer the issue of a retirement fund surplus to Policy and Planning for review. The motion was seconded and carried unanimously.

Classification of Court Records of Juror Names and Addresses:

Tim Shea reported that the Committee on Improving Jury Service made recommendations regarding the classification of Court Records of Juror names and Addresses, which were reviewed by the Policy and Planning Committee who then made additional recommendations. Both the Jury Improvement Committee and Policy and Planning agree that juror names, addresses, and telephone numbers should remain classified during the course of a trial, they differ, however, on the idea of releasing juror names after a trial. The Jury Improvement Committee feels that the names should be able to be released and made public after a trial, while Policy and Planning feels that, as a privacy issue, the names should remain confidential.

Michael O'Brien who was representing the media, expressed to the Council that he believes there to be a Constitutional right of access to this information, demonstrated by rulings in both the U.S. and the Utah Supreme Courts. Mr. Ryan asserted that the rule proposed by Policy and Planning doesn't take into account those Constitutional rights, and while the rule proposed by the Jury Improvement Committee is better, it still doesn't cover everything.

Jeff Hunt, also representing the media, declared that a blanket ban in which juror names were made anonymous in all court trials, would be unwise pubic policy. Mr. Hunt stated that it would be better to deal with problems that may arise on a case by case basis rather than adopting a blanket rule. The recommendation of the media is to retain the current system where names are available to the public. Juror names may be classified subject to the trial courts' discretion on a case by case basis, where there is a compelling interest and there are no less restrictive alternatives available.


Judge Davis made a motion to defer action on this matter until the Council's December meeting. The motion was seconded and carried unanimously.

July 1, 2001 Holladay Justice Court Effective Date:


Judge Davis made a motion to approve the July 1, 2001 Holladay Justice Court effective date. The motion was seconded and approved unanimously.

Olympic Overview:

Myron March and Brent Johnson presented this issue to the Judicial Council. Mr. March reported that the Olympic Committee is recommending the creation of Olympic Courts to expedite the processing of misdemeanors during the Olympics. These Olympic Courts would facilitate the resolution of cases while offenders are still in Utah. Mr. March referred to sections of a memorandum included in the Council's packet, which outline the locations of the events and the Olympic Courts, and list recommended Council actions.

Brent Johnson reported that by and large, the courts will be able to avoid scheduling large trials, but will need to remain open for other matters of business. In regards to law enforcement, the Olympic Committee is looking at the possibility of utilizing the resources of other states and federal agencies to address all law enforcement needs related to the Olympics.

The recommended Council actions included in a memorandum in the Council packet are listed as follows:


Judge Stirba made a motion to pass recommendation number one as written. The motion was seconded and carried with one opposed.


Judge Davis made a motion to not adopt recommendation number two. The motion was seconded, but then withdrawn.


Justice Wilkins made a substitute motion moving that recommendation number two be written as follows:

The motion was seconded and carried with two opposed.


Judge Stirba made a motion to approve recommendation number three, after striking the word "sole" from the sentence. The motion was seconded and carried unanimously.

Judicial Retirement and Medical Insurance Premiums:

Brent Johnson explained that in regards to Judicial Retirement Premiums, the guidelines originally stated that a Judge would receive up to seven years of paid up insurance premiums at retirement if they adhered to certain sick leave usage guidelines. However, as of July 1, 2000, based on action by the 2001 Legislature and the Retirement, all employees, including Judges, are required to pay a portion of the premiums at retirement. The Council agreed that this issue needs to be given further consideration.

The Council will obtain more information regarding the issue and will address it as an action item in December.

Presentation of Amicus Curiae Award:

Lane Beattie, State Olympic Director, briefly joined the Council and was presented the Amicus Curiae award for his excellent work in support of the judiciary.


A motion was made to go into Executive Session. The motion was seconded and carried unanimously.

Executive Session


A motion was made to come out of Executive Session. The motion was seconded and carried unanimously.

An orientation for new council members was then presented.


A motion was made to adjourn the meeting. The motion was seconded and approved unanimously.

The meeting adjourned at 2:50 p.m.