- Associated Press - Sunday, April 6, 2014

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) - A proposed constitutional amendment to change the makeup of the Alaska Judicial Council is scheduled for the Senate floor Monday.

SJR21, from Sen. Pete Kelly, has been billed as an attempt to provide greater balance to the council, which screens applicants for judgeships and makes nominations to the governor.

The proposal would change the number of non-attorney members on the council from three to six. It would keep the number of attorney members at three.

All new appointees would be subject to legislative confirmation, not just the public members.

Critics of SJR21, including the Alaska court system, worry the change will politicize the process. They say the existing process has served Alaska well.

Proposed constitutional amendments require two-thirds vote of the House and Senate before going to voters.



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