Today's Law As Amended


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AB-1452 Pilot program: increased fee for low-income jurors: criminal trials.(2021-2022)



As Amends the Law Today


SECTION 1.

 Section 240 is added to the Code of Civil Procedure, to read:

240.
 (a) Notwithstanding any other law, including Section 215, the Superior Court of San Francisco is authorized to conduct a pilot program pursuant to the requirements of this section to analyze and determine whether paying certain low-income trial jurors an increased fee for service as a trial juror in a criminal case promotes a more economically and racially diverse trial jury panel that more accurately reflects the demographics of the community.
(b) The fee for service as a trial juror in a criminal case paid pursuant to the pilot program shall be as follows:
(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), a trial juror in a criminal case shall be paid the fee required by Section 215.
(2) A trial juror in a criminal case shall be paid a fee of one hundred dollars ($100) per day for each day they are required to report for service as a trial juror if the trial juror’s household income for the past 12 months is less than 80 percent of the San Francisco Bay area median income and the trial juror meets one of the additional following criteria:
(A) The trial juror’s employer does not compensate for any trial jury service.
(B) The trial juror’s employer does not compensate for trial jury service for the estimated duration of the criminal jury trial.
(C) The trial juror is self-employed.
(D) The trial juror is unemployed.
(c) The pilot program court shall determine whether a trial juror is eligible for the one-hundred-dollar ($100) fee for service in a criminal jury trial pursuant to paragraph (2) of subdivision (b).
(d) The pilot program court shall only fund the one-hundred-dollar ($100) fee to eligible trial jurors using funding provided by The Financial Justice Project of the City and County of San Francisco.
(e) The pilot program court shall provide information about the pilot program with every mailed jury summons and all information that is provided regarding excuse from jury service based on a hardship. The pilot program court and court staff shall also provide information about the pilot program whenever applicable under the circumstances.
(f) The pilot program court shall implement a juror self-reporting data collection effort to collect data during the pilot program that allows a thorough analysis of whether paying certain low-income trial jurors an increased fee for service as a trial juror in a criminal case promotes a more economically and racially diverse trial jury panel that more accurately reflects the demographics of the community. The data collected shall include, to the maximum extent possible, the race, ethnicity, and income level of all trial jurors that receive the one-hundred-dollar ($100) fee for service as a trial juror.
(g) The pilot program court shall select a third-party entity to prepare an analysis and report of the data collected pursuant to subdivision (f) without any cost to the pilot program court. The third-party entity shall prepare a report of its analysis of the data and conclusion whether paying certain low-income trial jurors an increased fee for service as a trial juror in a criminal case promotes a more economically and racially diverse trial jury panel that more accurately reflects the demographics of the community. The third-party entity shall transmit its report to the pilot program court and the Legislature, in compliance with Section 9795 of the Government Code, within six months of the conclusion of the pilot program.
(h) The pilot program court shall terminate the pilot program on or before December 31, 2023. The pilot program court shall terminate the pilot program if at any time it determines the increased financial reimbursement is causing prejudice to the rights of litigants or the interests of justice.
(i) For the purposes of this section only, “pilot program court” means the Superior Court of San Francisco.
(j) This section shall remain in effect only until January 1, 2025, and as of that date is repealed.