How Judges Get Paid Has Nothing to do with Merit nor their Competence. QUESTIONS
How Judges Get Paid Has Nothing to do with Merit nor their Competence.
A. Do You Know Who Decides How Much Your Local Judge Gets Paid?
B. Did you know that Oregon Supreme Court Chief Justice Paul De Muniz’s former law partner, John Hemann, is on the Commission that determines how much his buddy, the Chief, gets paid by Oregon taxpayers? Do you know who put him there?
C. Did you know that in the last two years, a time of economic meltdown, a time of budget-proposed court closures, and in a time of reduced court filings -- Oregon judges have gotten a 38% pay raise?
A. The Oregon Public Officials Compensation Commission (POCC), a creation of the Oregon Legislature, reactivated in 2007, makes the primary findings and recommendations on judicial pay. Their report is dated November, 2008 and is available in the above link.
B. True -- Mr. Hemann, a former law partner with Chief Justice Paul De Muniz in their Salem law firm is a member of the Oregon Public Officials Compensation Commission. Mr. De Muniz appointed Mr. Hemann to the POCC which decides his own salary.
C. True -- In 2007 an Oregon Circuit Court Judge’s salary was $95,800. In the 2009-2011 biennium their salary will be $132,000. Chief Justice De Muniz will receive $145,800 up from $107,600.
Oregon's Judicial Department has a 2009-2013 "Strategic Plan". Goal Two of that plan states that Oregon courts strive to be accountable. Yet Justice De Muniz refuses to entertain a statewide system of Judicial Performance Evaluations (JPE) even though the American Bar Association endorses the JPE concept for all states.
When will Oregon judges be judged on merit and the performance of their duties? What are they afraid of?? Perhaps, some of them really aren't doing so good for the citizens of Oregon.