N.J. Constitutional Convention: Vol. 4, Page 270

ters, should go to the Appellate Division. As it is now, in the Orphans' Court you can appeal to the Prerogative Court, which consists of, practically speaking, a Vice-Chancellor, but we thought that we could probably get, as time goes on, a system developed in the County Courts where those courts could try a case, no matter what the nature of the case was - a will contest, or an accounting, or what not - and have it in sufficient formality so that you could have one appeal on the record. The way the practice is now, if you are in the Orphans' Court and then you go into the Prerogative Court, you have to try the whole thing over again. The historical reason for that was that years ago the Common Pleas judges were not necessarily lawyers. Therefore, if a person came in there because he felt aggrieved by an accounting, or anything like that, and he went up to a higher court, the higher court said, "Well, let's try this whole thing all over again." Now, we can obviate that, and I don't think there can be any possible complaint about a thing like that.

MR. DIXON: By the establishment of the county courts you will eliminate justices of the peace and small cause courts and have everything go to the County Courts?

MR. WURTS: We have said nothing about justices of the peace and by so doing we have abolished them.

(Laughter)

Inferior courts may be created by statute, but the Legislature which gives can also take away, as you know. And if they can create a lot of justices of the peace they can slay them at the next session, as you know.

MR. WINNE: But justice of the peace courts are constitutional courts.

MR. WURTS: They are constitutional courts, yes, sir.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: You had better hold that last question until Mr. Peterson returns.

(Laughter)

MR. WURTS: Is he a justice of the peace?

VICE-CHAIRMAN: No, but he is highly interested in justices of the peace.

MR. WURTS: That brings me, Mr. Jacobs and members of the Committee, to the last point. That is, that all other inferior courts may be created by statute to such extent as the Legislature may deem fit, and that it may do whatever it wants with it.

Mr. Lasher has explained about our suggestion as to a court of impeachment. I don't know whether anybody else has brought that suggestion in to you or not, but you will find that on the first page of our draft - the first and second pages - we are attempting


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