Reading between the lines on judicial retirement bill | Arkansas Blog

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Reading between the lines on judicial retirement bill

Posted By on Sat, Feb 21, 2015 at 7:22 AM

Current Arkansas law requires judges to retire at the end of a term in which they turn 70 or else lose retirement benefits. It's a powerful incentive to quit because judges with sufficient tenure can retire at 80 percent of pay.

But many would like to continue working and many believe — and demonstrate — that they are fully competent at 70 and well beyond. Not all, of course.

Among those who'd like to continue serving is Arkansas Supreme Court Chief Justice Jim Hannah. He and others have tried unsuccessfully to get the legislature to raise the retirement limit.

So now comes a bill this session, HB 1202 by Rep. Matthew Shepherd, to up the cutoff to 72.

Many legislators have responded favorably to this bill because they think it will help Chief Justice Hannah. They are wrong, I'm told.  I believe it was written for the benefit of a particular South Arkansas  judge, though it would have the general effect of lengthening service time without penalty. Just not for Hannah.

Hannah, 70, will turn 72 less than a week before a new term for him would begin in January 2017. Under both current law and the new proposal he could not run for office again in 2016 without facing the loss of retirement benefits. Perhaps he'll do that anyway.

Many lawyers hope so, particularly those who oppose Justice Courtney Goodson's plan to run for chief justice in 2016.

Sign up for the Daily Update email

Comments (4)

Showing 1-4 of 4

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-4 of 4

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Suddenly, Rutledge is interested in state's terrible landlord-tenant law

    Crocodile tears from Attorney General Leslie Rutledge on the state's terrible landlord-tenant law. Given a chance to do something meaningful about it before, however, she didn't.
    • Jul 16, 2018
  • Reports filed on casino amendment

    Initial financial reports have been filed by groups pushing a casino expansion amendment and the major financial force so far is the Quapaw tribe of Oklahoma, which is in the casino business. Another Oklahoma tribe, a gambling machine organization and a Mississippi gambling enterprise also are listed.
    • Jul 16, 2018
  • Re Trump: The Arkies say......

    Trump getting trashed for cozying up to Putin, from Fox News to John McCain. Now Arkansans are being heard from. Example from Sen. John Boozman: "Russia is not our friend."
    • Jul 16, 2018
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Former Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel applauds Trump's EPA choice of climate change denier Scott Pruitt

    Dustin McDaniel gives the thumbs up to a man set to dismantle EPA regulations.
    • Dec 8, 2016
  • Women's March planned in Arkansas to mark Trump inauguration

    Speaking of Donald Trump and in answer to a reader's question: There will be a women's march in Arkansas on Jan. 21, the day after inauguration, as well as the national march planned in Washington.
    • Dec 30, 2016
  • Trump immigration protest at LR: Quick and fierce

    It was not even 24 hours ago that Sophia Said, director of the Interfaith Center; City Director Kathy Webb and others decided to organize a protest today of Donald Trump's executive order that has left people from Muslim countries languishing in airports or unable to come to the US at all — people with visas, green cards,a  post-doc graduate student en route to Harvard, Google employees abroad, families. I got the message today before noon; others didn't find out until it was going on. But however folks found out, they turned out in huge numbers, more than thousand men, women and children, on the grounds of the state Capitol to listen to speakers from all faiths and many countries.
    • Jan 29, 2017

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments



© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation