Tennessee Law Might Change Where Two Judges Work Away from Shelby County!


Cybersecdn-  Senate Bill 2517, has ignited a contentious debate over the potential relocation of two crucial judgeships from Shelby County to other regions of the state. If enacted, the bill would lead to the elimination of the seat previously held by Judge Melissa Boyd of Criminal Court Division Nine, who recently resigned amid controversy. Additionally, the bill targets the removal of the Circuit Court Division Seven Seat, previously occupied by Judge Mary Wagner, who was appointed to the Tennessee Supreme Court.

Spearheaded by Senator Frank Niceley of Strawberry Plains, the bill argues that Shelby County has experienced an overabundance of judgeships since 2002, prompting the need for redistribution. Supporters of the bill highlight concerns over Memphis’ crime rates and the backlog of court cases, advocating for the reallocation of judgeships to address these issues effectively.

 Tennessee Law Might Change Where Two Judges Work Away from Shelby County

However, opposition to the bill has been fervent, particularly from representatives of Shelby County. Senator Brent Taylor, along with Shelby County’s District Attorney Steve Mulroy, has vehemently opposed the proposed relocation of judgeships. Taylor acknowledges the needs of other parts of the state but insists that Shelby County still requires adequate judicial representation, especially in the realm of criminal justice.

The bill’s passage through the Senate Judiciary Committee, with a vote of five to three, underscores the ongoing contention surrounding the issue. Critics argue that reallocating judgeships away from Shelby County could exacerbate existing challenges, such as case backlogs, and diminish the region’s ability to address crime effectively.

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While proponents of the bill cite a weighted caseload study indicating Shelby County’s overjudged status since 2002, opponents counter that the study is outdated and fails to consider the current dynamics of the region’s judicial needs. As the debate intensifies, the fate of the two Shelby County judgeships hangs in the balance, awaiting further legislative action.

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