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Huge, Arbitrary Budgets

Paragraph 10 mandates that the Special Grand Jury's operational budget is twice the 13 jurors' salaries, or $2.65 million. No reason is given for this figure, which has no connection to any real-world budget plan - and no budget oversight whatsoever. The result is a burden to taxpayers and a nonsensical operation plan for a kangaroo court.

Our response:

Whether or not the $2.65 million figure is accurate, paragraph 10 states that the sum, whatever it may be, shall be deposited into an exclusive trust account; and any excess at the end of the budget year transferred to the state treasury. So only what is actually needed will be utilized.

They claim "No reason is given for this figure, which has no connection to any real-world budget plan." Amendment E purposely does not set forth a specific figure for the budget. Common sense dictates that as time and inflation transpires, there can be no fixed figure set in a constitutional amendment. Any fixed figure chosen would become unrealistic in time, and thus would require impractical repeated new constitutional amendments every time a change of the budget figure would become necessary to meet future adjustments.

"No connection to any real-world budget plan"??  How about a connection to judges' salaries? Are judges' salaries a "real-world budget plan"? or a figment of someone's imagination from outer space?

We are sure that even the No-On-E Club has to acknowledge, albeit reluctantly, that the figure to finance J.A.I.L. has to be based on an already-existing pay scale, and what better option would there be than the salaries of the beneficiaries? This is precisely the reason why all figures within Amendment E are wisely and ingeniously based on judicial salaries. This means every time the judges get a raise, presumably for cost-of-living allowances, it likewise provides a cost-of-living allowance for their benefactor, the SGJ. It works just as the rising tide raises all ships, not just those "politically" selected.

We are of the opinion that the Club actually wants NO financing whatsoever for the oversight of the judiciary. In fact, they want NO OVERSIGHT by the People at all-- even if it was free.

As we stated in a previous response, this budget expense will not fall to the taxpayers, but primarily to the judges since they are the beneficiaries of this process. It advances public confidence in their profession, without which the judicial system would otherwise continue to decline in its integrity.

"No budget oversight whatsoever"?? Paragraph 10 provides that the exclusive trust account into which the annual budget sum shall be initially deposited by the Legislature, shall be "annually administered by the State Treasurer." So their statement indicates the No-On-E Club apparently hasn't comprehended  Amendment E.

Lastly, the Special Grand Jury is not a court of any kind-- it will only serve to rein in "kangaroo courts" run by "kangaroo" judges.


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