Governor Bill Haslam on Thursday announced he has issued Executive Order No. 34 establishing the Governor’s Commission for Judicial Appointments, a necessary step to sustain the judicial branch of government and its operations.
The new 17-member commission will send a panel of three nominees to the governor to make an appointment when a vacancy occurs or is impending.
The Tennessee Attorney General issued an opinion last week confirming the governor’s authority to continue making judicial appointments after the termination of the Judicial Nominating Commission (JNC) on June 30, 2013. The JNC also had 17 members.
“I would like to keep the process virtually the same for selecting judges in Tennessee the same until Tennesseans have the opportunity to vote on the proposed constitutional amendment in 2014. This commission allows us to continue to select the highest quality people and ensure a stable and effective judiciary,” Governor Haslam said.
The 11 members of the JNC whose terms did not expire with the termination of the JNC will continue to serve on the Governor’s Commission for Judicial Appointments.
The executive order establishes that the governor will appoint the remaining six members of the new commission in consultation with the lieutenant governor and speaker of the House.