N.J. Constitutional Convention: Vol. 4, Page 15


STATE OF NEW JERSEY CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION OF 1947
COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIARY
Tuesday, June 24, 1947 (Morning session)


Transition

court system be reduced, or will they be carried on as a matter of fairness?

MR. HENDRICKSON: It is my guess, Assemblyman, that they will probably use all the judges we have at the moment in this system. That was our feeling in 1942, and I don't think there has been any change in that respect.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: On the other hand, if the volume of business is such that you don't need them all, there will be no difficulty in reducing them?

MR. HENDRICKSON: No.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: Are there any further questions?

MRS. GENE W. MILLER: What assurance have you that the special judges so appointed would be used in their best capacity? Would it be up to the Chief Justice to appoint these judges where he feels they will be needed most?

MR. HENDRICKSON: It would be up to the Chief Justice to appoint these judges to areas where he feels they would best be used. That is how they are to be assigned under this system.

MRS. MILLER: But that would not be in the system; it would just be understood?

MR. HENDRICKSON: Yes, under a gentleman's agreement.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: Is there anything further?

(Silence)

VICE-CHAIRMAN: May I express the Committee's thanks to you, Senator.

MR. HENDRICKSON: It was my pleasure, and may I express my thanks to the Committee for inviting me.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: As we go along we will try to clarify our thoughts on these various proposals, and in case there is some doubt amongst some of the members of the Committee as to what proposals have already been referred to, may I summarize them?

As I understand Mr. Hendrickson, the Commission proposed a smaller court of appeals. It also proposed a so-called unified court at the trial level. You will notice that the Senator referred to the federal system and the English system. We might clarify both systems because they will be referred to later on. Under the English system, they have a unified court with separate divisions provided by law. Of course, they have no constitution, so I am referring to their Judiciary Act which provides that there is a court A with an X division administering law and a Y division administering equity, etc. Under the federal system we now have the United States District Court which has no separation between law and equity. It is a unified court, but it goes one step further than the English system in that there is no separation. A United States District Court judge, who is the judge sitting in the federal court, is the law judge, the


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