The word for Georgia’s court system is “upgrade,” or at least that’s what Governor Nathan Deal is recommending. Gov. Deal has submitted a plan to help improve our state’s justice system, and he calls it the Georgia Appellate Jurisdiction Review Commission, but will this plan help to bring the Georgia courts into the 21st century?
Does The Georgia Supreme Court Need A New Home?
The Governor’s plan suggests building a new home for the Georgia Judiciary. The building would exclusively house the workings of the state’s courts—which would be the first time the judiciary wouldn’t have to share a building with other branches of government. Plus, the new building would offer the latest in technological advancement and provide room for the courts to expand, something the old building just wasn’t designed to do.
Does Georgia Have Enough Judges?
Currently the number of judges in Georgia has only increased by 16 percent, but the population of our state has doubled since 1983. This statistic raises concerns that there won’t be enough judges to fulfill the demands that people put on the system, but the Governor’s plan might hold the answer.
Gov. Deal suggests having the Georgia Supreme Court only hear cases that could potentially change law. It would see cases challenging the constitutionality of enacted laws, examine Georgia laws when asked by the federal courts, and it would rule on cases that split the Court of Appeals. The Court of Appeals would also hear the cases that formerly came before the Supreme Court.
This plan would most likely require an expansion of our state’s courts—something Chief Justice Hugh P. Thompson supports—and it could help bring our courts into the modern era. Keep following our blog to find out what other changes could be coming to the Georgia court system.