N.J. Constitutional Convention: Vol. 4, Page 294
Equity Division, or vice versa, assuming that the needs of the court required it?
MR. VAN RIPER: I would assume that the best procedure would be assignment permanently of judges to their respective divisions, but if for the purpose of temporary relief it were necessary to call on one division for the help of a judge over in the other division, I certainly wouldn't think that was a particularly bad thing.
VICE-CHAIRMAN: And you would give that right to the Chief Justice of the Court of Appeals?
MR. VAN RIPER: I think that he would be the man to decide that.
MR. BROGAN: Did you have in mind that the Common Pleas Court in each county should remain substantially as it is, and that ths probate system remain substantially as it is, with a Surrogate and Orphans' Court, presided over by a Common Pleas judge?
MR. VAN RIPER: I had in mind, Chief Justice, that first of all, this business of Common Pleas, Court of Quarter Sessions and General Sessions, that should be eliminated, there should be one court; but that the judge in the county should do practically the same work that he does now. Yes, I had that in mind.
MR. BROGAN: Where would this court sit? For instance, suppose you got a county judge in Cape May, a Common Pleas judge, as you have. Would he do just the Cape May business and then, in order to keep busy, rely on some administrative officer assigning him where there was work for him to do?
MR. VAN RIPER: That would seem to be the only way that he could do. He would, first of all, have to do the Cape May business. Now, we all know that in those small counties they haven't enough to keep him busy. I think that he should be available to go into other counties and try other actions of law where there was a congested calendar. As a matter of fact, that happens today in most of the other counties.
MR. BROGAN: In the matter of appointments, suppose somebody died in the Court of Chancery - no one resigns, but suppose someone died - should the Governor appoint someone particularly to that vacancy in the Equity Division?
MR. VAN RIPER: I should think that whoever had the power of appointment should do that.
MR. BROGAN: Well, I assume it's the Governor; I think we all assume he will have the appointing power. Let's say that we do think that the appointing power should be in the Governor - that is tentative, nothing fixed about it. Should the Governor appoint to a particular court -
MR. VAN RIPER: I see what you mean; when appointment is made, should he appoint -
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