August 02, 2013 - 2:53 PM
VICTORIA - The B.C. government is appointing a new judge to the British Columbia Provincial Court in Kamloops to ensure that the court is equipped to manage caseload pressures and access to justice, Attorney General and Minister of Justice Suzanne Anton announced today.
The appointment of Kamloops' newest judge, Leonard Marchand, is effective Sept. 3, 2013. He replaces a judge who was appointed to the Supreme Court of British Columbia.
Government and the public rely on judges for their integrity and impartiality and trust they will deliver fair, learned decisions. These qualities are essential for maintaining the public's confidence in the courts and are a vital component of any democratic justice system.
Under B.C.'s new Justice Reform and Transparency Act, government has committed to working with the Chief Judge to develop a formula for determining the appropriate judicial complement for the Provincial Court.
While this work is underway, government will continue to discuss judicial appointments with the Chief Judge and make appointments, as appropriate, to address matters such as judicial vacancies and case backlog. The Province also is working with the Chief Judge to develop and implement measures to increase court efficiencies and help avoid court delays.
Government is maintaining its investment of critical resources in the justice system. The total cost to support one Provincial Court judge is about $1.4 million annually, including the judge's salary and costs for court administration staff, sheriffs, prosecution services and judicial support.
Attorney General and Minister of Justice Suzanne Anton -
"We are very happy to appoint Leonard Marchand to the bench. The position of provincial court judge is one of great honour and responsibility. Mr. Marchand's appointment supports our continued focus on increasing access to justice and clearing the backlogs in our courts. I am confident his expertise in civil and criminal law, and exceptional work on Aboriginal issues, will serve the taxpayers and the justice system well."
* The process to appoint judges involves several steps:
o Interested lawyers apply and the B.C. Judicial Council, a committee made up of the Chief Judge, other judges, lawyers and lay people, reviews
o The council recommends potential judges to the Attorney General, with the final appointment made through a cabinet order-in-council.
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013