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2014 California Rules of Court

Rule 10.34. Duties and responsibilities of advisory committees

(a) Role

Advisory committees are standing committees created by rule of court or the Chief Justice to make recommendations and offer policy alternatives to the Judicial Council for improving the administration of justice within their designated areas of focus by doing the following:

(1)Identifying issues and concerns affecting court administration and recommending solutions to the council;

(2)Proposing necessary changes to rules, standards, forms, and jury instructions;

(3)Reviewing pending legislation and making recommendations to the Policy Coordination and Liaison Committee on whether to support or oppose it;

(4)Recommending new legislation to the council;

(5)Recommending to the council pilot projects and other programs to evaluate new procedures or practices;

(6)Acting on assignments referred by the council or an internal committee; and

(7)Making other appropriate recommendations to the council.

(Subd (a) adopted effective August 14, 2009.)

(b) Annual charges

(1)Advisory committees are assigned annual charges by the council or an internal committee specifying what should be achieved in a given year. The council or an internal committee may amend an advisory committee's annual charge at any time.

(2)Advisory committees have limited discretion to pursue matters in addition to those specified in each committee's annual charge, as long as the matters are consistent with a committee's general charge, within the limits of resources available to the committee, and within any other limits specified by the council, the designated internal committee, or the Administrative Director of the Courts.

(Subd (b) adopted effective August 14, 2009.)

(c) Responsibilities of the chair

Advisory committee chairs are responsible, with the assistance of staff, to:

(1)Develop a realistic annual agenda for the advisory committee, consistent with the committee's annual charge by the Judicial Council or Judicial Council internal committee;

(2)Present the advisory committee's recommendations to the Judicial Council;

(3)Discuss with the Administrative Director or the Administrative Director's designee appropriate staffing and other resources for projects within the advisory committee's agenda; and

(4)Submit recommendations with respect to advisory committee membership.

(Subd (c) adopted effective August 14, 2009.)

(d) Role of the Administrative Director of the Courts

(1)The Administrative Director determines whether projects undertaken by council advisory bodies in addition to those specified in the council's or internal committee's annual charge to the advisory body are consistent with the body's general charge, its approved annual agenda, and the Judicial Council's strategic plan. The Administrative Director also determines whether any additional matters are within the body's authorized budget and available resources.

(2)The Administrative Director is not bound by the recommendations of an advisory committee and may make alternative recommendations to the Judicial Council or recommend that an advisory committee's annual charge be amended.

(Subd (d) adopted effective August 14, 2009.)

(e) Role of staff

(1)Advisory committees are assisted by the staff of the Administrative Office of the Courts. The duties of staff members include drafting committee annual agendas, managing the committee's budget and resources, coordinating committee activities, providing legal and policy analysis to the committee, organizing and drafting reports, selecting and supervising consultants, providing technical assistance, and assisting committee chairs in presenting the committee's recommendations to the Judicial Council. Staff may provide independent legal or policy analysis of issues that is different from the committee's position, if authorized to do so by the Administrative Director of the Courts.

(2)Staff report to the Administrative Director of the Courts. The decisions or instructions of an advisory body or its chair are not binding on the staff except in instances when the council or the Administrative Director has specifically authorized such exercise of authority.

(Subd (e) adopted effective August 14, 2009.)

(f) Review of annual agendas

(1)Each committee must submit a proposed annual agenda that is reviewed by the internal committee with oversight responsibility, as designated by the Chief Justice. This subdivision does not apply to the Administrative Presiding Justices Advisory Committee.

(2)The internal committee that is responsible for oversight of the advisory committee reviews the proposed annual agenda and provides the advisory committee with an annual charge to ensure that its activities are consistent with the council's goals and priorities. The annual charge may:

(A)Approve or disapprove the annual agenda in whole or in part;

(B)Direct the committee to pursue specific projects on the annual agenda;

(C)Add or delete specific projects; and

(D)Reassign priorities.

(3)To pursue matters in addition to those specified in its annual charge, an advisory committee must have the approval of the internal committee with oversight responsibility for the advisory committee. The matters must be consistent with the advisory committee's general charge, as set forth in the rules of court, its approved annual agenda, and the council's long-range strategic plan. The additional matters must also be within the committee's authorized budget and available resources, as specified by the council or the Administrative Director of the Courts.

(Subd (f) amended effective February 20, 2014; adopted effective August 14, 2009.)

Rule 10.34 amended effective February 20, 2014; adopted as rule 6.34 effective January 1, 1999, and September 1, 2003; previously amended and renumbered effective January 1, 2007; previously amended effective January 1, 2002, and August 14, 2009.

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