News

Law to abolish jury commissioners thrown out

Written by The Associated Press | Mar 15, 2013 6:13 AM
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(Harrisburg) -- Pennsylvania's highest court says the law that would allow counties to abolish the office of jury commissioners isn't valid because it violates the state constitution's single-subject provision. 

The Supreme Court voted 6-to-0 Thursday to throw out the law enacted in 2011.

Jury commissioners traditionally help ensure that trial jurors reflect a cross-section of society and deal with juror problems.

But critics argue in some counties the job isn't needed thanks to computerization and the duties are often performed by court staff.

The law gave all counties that have commissioners a means of doing away with them, and dozens did so.

But the justices say the change was impermissibly tied with a measure that dealt with electronic auctions by counties.

The state constitution says bills can't have more than one subject.

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