N.J. Constitutional Convention: Vol. 4, Page 500


STATE OF NEW JERSEY CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION OF 1947
COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIARY
Wednesday, July 30, 1947 (Morning session)

in that field than you have at the present time.

Moreover, our organization objects to the fact that jurisdiction over such matters would be vested in the General Court. That means, as I take it, that a lawyer might go to a judge who is occupied with the trial of jury cases, or to any member of the General Court, and seek to sue out an order which will take the place of a writ which is now only to be dispensed by the Supreme Court. Again that gets away from the field of specialization that we thought was one of the great advantages of our system. I noticed that in the transfer of causes, at another point in the Article - and I guess it's in the Schedule - all prerogative writs are now to be transferred to the Appellate Division, those that are pending. It's our view that the Appellate Division should have jurisdiction over prerogative writs as a permanent matter, not that they should be allowable by any member of the General Court.

We also object to the retirement provision in Section V, paragraph 3. According to information which I have endeavored to obtain, if you make retirement compulsory at the age of 70, it means that seven members of our highest court who today are functioning, bringing the ability and skill that they have to the administration of justice, would have to retire. We think that that would be nothing short of an atrocity. We know that the history of our State shows that Chief Justice Beasley went into the 80s. His opinions are looked upon almost as gospel in the State. He was in the 80s before his judicial career was terminated. Justice Gummere, if I mistake not, was 85 or 86. So that in the light of experience, 70 is entirely too early an age, without mentioning specifically those distinguished jurists who occupy the highest places in our courts today. In my humble opinion, the Chief Justice who decorates the bench today, who brings all the experience and brilliance of his intellect to the administration of justice, who is a fit successor to the predecessors whom I have mentioned, would be out of the court in September 1947, or as soon as this Article becomes effective. We think that the retirement age should be voluntary, perhaps at 70, compulsory at 75.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: Thank you very much Judge Kremer.

Mr. Carton. Are Mr. Lawrence Carton and Mr. Robert Maida here? Mr. Jilson?

MR. WILLIAM JILSON: Ladies and gentlemen:

I would like to congratulate the Committee on the fine job it has done in giving us this Judicial Article. I'm a little sorry that I am, as you can see, a very young lawyer, and therefore what I say probably doesn't carry very much weight. However, I would like to, as I say, congratulate you on the job you have done.

May I say, after that preface, that I am also sorry that due, I am


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