Duly Noted

 Snyder signs bills to reconfigure state judgeships

On March 27, Gov. Rick Snyder signed five bills that reallocate judicial resources in the state based on criteria determined in a report last year by the state court administrator.

The report is issued every other year, and is based on a statewide caseload assessment to determine adequate judicial distribution. Only the Legislature can add or remove judgeships, however.
 
House Bills 5121-5125 address these issues by removing six judgeships – four from the 3rd Circuit Court in Wayne County, one from the 36th District Court in Detroit and one from the 70th District Court in Saginaw. Judges in these positions will serve out their current terms, but will not be replaced.

In return, the bills add six judgeships – two to the 16th Circuit Court in Macomb County, one to the 6th Circuit Court in Oakland County, one to the 17th Circuit Court in Kent County, one to the 7th District Court in Van Buren County, and one to the 63rd District Court in Kent County, subject to a local vote.

“Keeping citizens safe and cities secure is essential to Michigan’s comeback,” Snyder said. “We have made great progress in strengthening public safety and reducing crime, and part of that comes from a smart justice system that makes sure resources are available where they’re most needed. The changes in these bills continue those efforts.”

The bills, sponsored by state Reps. John Walsh, Klint Kesto, Kevin Cotter, Tom Leonard, and Kurt Heise, respectively, are now Public Acts 56-60 of 2014.
 
Gov. Snyder also signed into law a bill which met with the approval of the National Rifle Association.

Senate Bill 610, sponsored by state Sen. Mike Green, allows for the manufacture, possession or transfer of short-barreled shotguns or rifles in compliance with federal law. An owner must also keep the
federal registration for the firearm and present the registration to law enforcement when requested during transport. It is now PA 63.

“On behalf of the National Rifle Association's five million members, I want to thank Governor Snyder for signing this bill into law and the bill's sponsor, state Senator Michael Green, for championing this important legislation,” said Chris W. Cox, executive director of the National Rifle Association's Institute for Legislative Action. “Victories such as these are critical to ensuring we maintain our Right to Keep and Bear Arms,”Cox concluded.

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