N.J. Constitutional Convention: Vol. 4, Page 179


STATE OF NEW JERSEY CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION OF 1947
COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIARY
Wednesday, July 2, 1947 (Morning session)

JUDGE BRENNAN: That would seem the idea.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: If the business permitted all appeals to go to the Court of Appeals, would there be any need for an intermediate court of appeals?

JUDGE BRENNAN: I can't answer that.

MR. BROGAN: It comes down to this - if from all courts there was an immediate appeal to the Court of Appeals, it might well result in this court of seven being absolutely deluged and overcome with the volume of business.

JUDGE BRENNAN: Which is what you want to avoid.

MR. BROGAN: Yes.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: If experience shows otherwise, is there any need for this double structure?

JUDGE BRENNAN: I can't answer that, but I want to make this observation - it isn't a sign of softness or sloth to suggest that judges can't operate on timeclocks. I think the need everybody cries for is rapid resolutions, a disposition of a case. And that is what you can't get. Certainly, in many cases the judges are deluged with appellate work. There is no reason why a judge shouldn't have decent leisure.

MR. BROGAN: Judge, what I wanted to ask you - you may not have any opinion on it - have you anything to say about the proposal to abolish the prerogative writs?

JUDGE BRENNAN: I have nothing to say about it. What is to be substituted for it?

MR. BROGAN: Well, a sort of review by the Court of Appeals, or call it what you will.

JUDGE BRENNAN: I have always felt they were instrumentalities which prevented arbitrary injustice. Unless there is something that will take their place, I would like to see them stay. The fiat of local statements sometimes can determine your destiny or mine. You ought to have a speedy and effective right of review.

MR. BROGAN: Of course, a writ of certiorari is today a very potent thing, to stay something that ought to be stayed.

JUDGE BRENNAN: I think that is true, and in many, many instances - some I can cite in my own experience - has prevented immediate and arbitrary injustice. I think if they are going to be abolished there ought to be something, some instrumentality to take their place.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: Judge, we haven't touched upon one problem which the Chief Justice and I have discussed, this appellate division problem, and I don't know whether basically we agree on the thought that that would depend on the volume of business. The Constitution probably should be flexible enough to permit that intermediate court if it is needed.


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