Members Present: Judge William Herauf, Chair Justice Lisa Fair McEvers Judge David Reich Judge Doug Mattson Brad Saville, Juvenile Court Officers Association Scott Hopwood, Juvenile Court Director, Unit 4
Members Not Present: Referee John Grinsteiner Judge Daniel Narum
Staff Present: Sally Holewa, State Court Administrator Lana Zimmerman, scribe
Guests: Cory Pedersen, Juvenile Court Director, Unit 3 Karen Kringlie, Juvenile Court Director, Unit 2 Lee Ann Barnhardt, Director of Education and Communication Mike Hagburg, Staff Attorney
Judge Herauf called the meeting to order. He asked if there were any additions or corrections to
the April 5, 2013, meeting minutes. Since Justice McEvers was unaware of the discussion at the
April 5, 2013 meeting, as she was not a member of the Board at that time, she asked about the
discussion in reference to N.D.C.C. 27-21-05, Division of juvenile services to report to the
committing juvenile court. Ms. Kringlie clarified the discussion was in regards to the statute that
required filing with the court. Judge Reich shared Rule 3.5 requires e-filing in district courts.
Ms. Kringlie agreed that a reference should be added to clarify this as the statute states the
Department of Corrections has to submit filings to the court.
Judge Herauf asked if there were additional changes and added the reference to the rule. Justice
McEvers also noted a change on page 2, last paragraph to read, “the Division of Juvenile
A motion was made by Judge Mattson to approve the April 5, 2013, minutes as amended.
The motion was seconded by Judge Reich, motion approved.
Review Administrative Rule 35 Ms. Holewa proposed to change the time frame of the comment period in Administrative Rule 35
from 45 days to 15 days. The notice requirements are distributed to only internal stakeholders.
Other committees that require comment periods are Administrative Council, which is 30 days,
and Personnel Policy Board, which is 15 days.
A motion was made by Judge Mattson to change the comment period as stated in AR 35
from 45 days to 15 days. Discussion convened.
Judge Reich asked what the procedure is after the Juvenile Policy Board. Ms. Holewa clarified
that since this is an Administrative Rule, it would go directly to the Supreme Court. It will then
be distributed to the district court judges, and the appropriate district court personnel. Judge
Mattson suggested that a 30 day comment period may be more successful. Justice McEvers
agreed to make the comment period longer to provide judges time to have discussions at their
local judges meetings. Judge Mattson also shared this is something which would be discussed
with the presiding judge.
A motion was made by Judge Mattson to amend the comment period from 15 days to 30
days, seconded by Judge Reich, motion approved.
A motion was made by Judge Herauf to recommend this to the Supreme Court for a
comment period to 30 days, motion carried.
Review Comments from Policy 400 Series
Please refer to handouts. Comments were sent from Ms. Holewa, Justice Mary Maring, and
Judge Braaten. Ms. Holewa explained that quite sometime ago, the Board had approved
recommended changes to a few of the 400 series policies. She has visited with Mike Hagburg in
regards to possibly changing the appropriate policies into rules.
Mr. Hagburg has completed a preliminary view of the 400 series and is requesting suggestions
from this Board. He is more than willing to draft proposed Rules of Procedure.
* Policy 401 - Drug/Alcohol Screening could be put in the Rules of Juvenile Procedure, easily.
There is an equivalent rule in the Rules of Criminal Procedure that allows this sort of thing.
* Policy 402 -Juvenile Court Records and Confidentiality and Policy 403 - Expungement could
also be added to the Rules of Juvenile Procedure, but where they go depends on the philosophy.
They could also be added to the Administrative Rules, as well.
* Policy 404 - Restitution and Community Service could be a procedural rule and there are
equivalent rules in the Rules of Criminal Procedure.
* Policy 405 - Detention Hearings definitely has an equivalence in the Rules of Criminal
Procedure where there is a time limit on when detention hearings are to be held within 24 hours.
* Policy 406 - Report Alcohol and Drug violations to the Department of Transportation. The
philosophy as to why something should be a court rule or policy is a question on whether people
outside of the court system are going to need to use, or want to know about. The policies are not
readily accessible by the public. Therefore, attorneys wouldn’t have access to the policies
because they are on the internal website, which is accessed by court employees, judges, and
justices. The question is whether it should stay a policy or rule and is determined if you want the
public to have access.
* Policy 407 - Electronic Monitoring. This is like the other rules on screening and testing. It
could be a Rule on Juvenile Procedure.
* Policy 408 - Court officer may not sign petition. This is something that can go into the existing
* Policy 409 (time standards) and 410 (duties of juvenile court officer) should stay policies.
Judge Herauf asked for any thoughts of the 400 series policies. Ms. Holewa explained if there
are things that attorneys and the public should know, they should be placed in the Juvenile Rules
of Procedure. The recommendations will then go to the Supreme Court.
Judge Mattson asked which policies should remain policies. Mr. Hagburg answered Policy 406
(report alcohol and drug violations to the Department of Transportation), Policy 407 (time
standards), and Policy 410 (duties of juvenile court officer).
It was determined by this Board to look at the submitted comments on the three policies and
direct Mr. Hagburg to work on drafting the remaining policies as Rules of Procedure.
There were no comments on policies 406, 409, and 410. They will be sent to the Supreme Court
for approval, as amended.
Ms. Holewa shared the comments from Judge Braaten which dealt with Juvenile Drug Court and
there was a response to that comment from Justice Maring stating it has been noted and is
included in her comments, as well. Justice Maring had a comment on Policy 401, Section II, and
Ms. Holewa had a comment on Section VI.
Judge Braaten commented the policies talk about Juvenile Court, and don’t specifically identify
Juvenile Drug Court as being included.
Justice Maring commented in Policy 401 which indicates if a juvenile is ordered to participate in
the Juvenile Drug Court program under N.D.C.C. 27-20-31(7), Juvenile Drug Court has the
authority to conduct drug and alcohol testing. She would like to add the authority of the Juvenile
Ms. Holewa stated Policy 401, Page 2, Section VI, under Procedures states, the Juvenile Court
Administration shall establish procedures and training requirements as necessary to implement
this policy. There is no such entity as juvenile court administration. The recommendation is a
juvenile court coordinator by rule that section VI could be amended to read: “the Juvenile Court
Coordinator in consultation with the Juvenile Court Director, shall establish procedures and
training requirements as necessary to implement this policy.” The section in the rule that sets up
the juvenile court coordinator is to implement procedure to carry out policy.
A motion was made by Justice McEvers for the change to Policy 401 above, seconded by
Judge Mattson, motion approved.
Ms. Holewa shared in Policy 402, section II, juvenile records confidentiality. This policy applies
to the “working files” of the juvenile court. This should be defined as it is unclear as to what
types of case related documents or other types of records are being maintained outside of the
official court file. The definition in our personnel rules of the working file, and under
Administrative Rule 41, is a definition of a working file, but there is no definite definition of
Scott Hopwood explained that a working file would be a paper file that is used on a day to day
basis. Materials contained in the working file are informal adjustment documents, and
evaluations pertaining to the youth on the informal side. There are also formal documents in the
working file, as well. Ms. Holewa asked for a definition of the working file to be included in the
policy, due to it possibly changing to a rule and open to the public. Mr. Peterson shared that
Administrative Rule 19 specifically talks about the working files and may have a better
description. Ms. Kringlie shared that 70% of cases are filed in the clerk of court office, so
probation notes, informal adjustment agreements are maintained there, which is the working file.
Ms. Holewa explained a “working file” is the unofficial records, but these are actually documents
and information that are part of the official record. Mr. Peterson explained that a definition of a
“juvenile working file” in Administrative Rule 19 and record retention schedules say that all
informal and formal documents, case notes, and reports. Ms. Holewa is in the process of putting
a memorandum together that would ask the court to completely review Administrative Rule 19.
Mike Hagburg will look this over to clarify a definition of a “working file.”
* Policy 404 - Section VI, Community Service, C. 2. The child is covered under Worker’s
Compensation by the agency or workplace, or the North Dakota Supreme Court, should change
to the North Dakota Court System.
Please add Mike Hagburg to the Agenda in regards to changes in the 400 series policies in June.
Court Improvement Project Committee Update Ms. Barnhardt updated the Board on two projects of the Court Improvement committee. The
ICWA compliance audits are underway. Researchers at UND, which hold the contract, are going
through our court records and identifying ICWA cases to make sure standards in the Federal
guidelines are being met for compliance. A finalized ICWA audit will be produced at the end of
summer and will be submitted to the court. If there are some variances or area’s not in
compliance, the procedures and processes will need to be identified. As of right now, the biggest
hurdle is in the findings in the file. Overall, the preliminary data looks good and are in
A quality assurance program is underway, which is funded through a grant to contract with Mr.
Paul Ronningen. He will be a monitor, so when a deprivation case is filed, he will track that case
and make sure all of the internal times standards are moving forward. This should help us with
the data in regards to permanency hearings being held within the 365 day window. He will also
be looking at individual cases to define trends, or area’s which could potentially be a policy and
procedure problem. The rest of the Court Improvement Project is mainly spent on data
collection, time standards, and data that is turned into the Federal Children’s Bureau every year.
Keep Kids in Schools Initiative Chief Justice VandeWalle, Ms. Barnhardt, Judge Narum, Cory Pedersen, and Louie Hentzen
attended a summit in New York City on the school and prison pipeline. This looks nationally at
the link between kids dropping out of school and getting involved in the court system and
ultimately ending up in adult prison. Limited data from each state was provided and the plan is
to convene the appropriate people in North Dakota to see if there is a problem in the state. A
team that consists of Ms. Barnhardt, Cory Pedersen, Judge Narum, Chief Justice VandWalle,
Kristen Baesler, Director of DPI, representation from the ND School Board’s Association, ND
Secondary School Principals Association, and a representative from the Indian Affairs
Commission. A behavioral psychologist that deals with adolescent behavior from Sanford
Health, and the head of the marketing office is also involved.
The biggest cause of concern in North Dakota is the drop out rate of native american students
that runs about 50%. Discussed 0 tolerance policies and the impacts on kids getting referred to
juvenile court. School resource officers were identified.
The plan is to dig into school data to see if a particular geographical area could be identified.
Problem area’s are that referrals aren’t reported from a school directly to the court system. Chief
Justice VandeWalle asked to receive data from the court officers and what the caseload looks
like, what are the courts dealing with, how many of the kids in the courts caseload are because of
truancy issues, how many have a history of expulsion, and how many are over the mandatory
attendance age. On the surface, very few of the referrals come directly from a school. Most were
from law enforcement. Some cases originate in the school, but not all. 30% is beyond the
compulsory attendance age in the caseload and are over the age of 16. The proportionality is
almost exactly what the proportionality to the population, which was predominantly white
juveniles, followed by 17% Native American’s. It wasn’t disproportional like the current
caseload. Type of referrals will be researched next.
Ms. Barnhardt received from DPI the information that is reported out annually of the types of
crimes which include, assaults, alcohol and tobacco. Ms. Barnhardt is working on compiling the
data from both entities to see if there are matches. Truancy rate is extremely high and the courts
truancy numbers are low that get reported to juvenile court. 45% of the caseload have had prior
suspension or expulsion from school.
The ultimate proposal is better educating educators, school administrators about juvenile court.
This is just a way to intersect between education and the courts. There are no big initiatives
coming out of it. It is nice to look at the data and see what is taking place.
Ms. Barnhardt stated the team will meet again at the end of March and she can report back to this
Court Leadership Symposium Ms. Holewa shared that the Court Leadership Symposium was created from the Justice
Management Institute. This is a think tank and research body that was an offshoot of the
National Center for State Courts. They put together court reform area’s because juvenile reform,
just like the evidence based sentencing on the adult side, is hot. 25 states are either doing both or
one or the other. Ms. Holewa thought that we should know what is going on nationally because
it eventually will go to the council of the state government or legislative.
Please refer to the handout, What State Courts Can Do To Promote Juvenile Justice Reform.
I. Core Reform Area: Racial and Ethnic Fairness in Juvenile Justice. The Juvenile Director’s
have worked hard in the last year to have a detention screening tool to utilize to try and reduce
disproportionate minority impact, which started in January. There will be some data for this
group in 6 months of how to reduce the number of minority who are being arrested and detained
for the same or similar offenses, and why a youth isn’t arrested and detained. A study done by
the state Juvenile Justice Advisory Group show that law enforcement officers in the field less
than 5 years, tend to make more minority arrests than officers who have been in the field longer.
There is a video that was funded to train new law enforcement officers. This is something that
continues to be discussed at meetings and working with the detention screening tool. Having
more alternatives to detention and electronic monitoring.
II. Core Reform Area: Juveniles with Behavioral Health Needs. Mental health screenings are
done on all probation youth which can connect them with services. There are concerns about
rural area’s and access to mental health services. Access in rural area’s is a big concern. There
was an expansion the last biennium into the western area of the state, which added a worker in
Fargo and the only area in the state that is lacking intensive in home is the Southeast Judicial
District. There has been ITV interaction, so there are some ways to connect and collaborate.
There have been a lot of concerns about adolescent addiction treatment statewide.There are
regions that aren’t licensed and can’t provide providers. Ms. Kringlie shared there was a
meeting with Alex Schweitzer at the North Dakota State Hospital, which was a safety net for kids
without insurance. Mr. Schweitzer stated they weren’t receiving any referrals. There are kids that
have maximized benefits. Ms. Holewa shared there is a stakeholder group that convened in
February to look at the behavioral health issues and have discussed the lack of juvenile services
with all behavioral stakeholder groups. This is something that the interim legislative committee
on human services was tasked with studying in this area. The goal is to look at regulations that
may be inhibiting some of this. There is no reciprocity on license with any states for addiction
counselors or mental health professionals. Psychiatric care and getting kids into see a
psychiatrist is a 3 month waiting period.
III. Core Reform Area: High Quality Juvenile Defense Services. The Indigent Defense
Commission has adopted some policies about specific training for juvenile defenders. There
aren’t any rules about waiver of counsel.
IV. Core Reform Area: Dual Status Youth and Fragmented Child-Serving Systems. Because this
is a small state, it is collaborative and meetings with all local stakeholders is consistent. There
are individual judges that hold local stakeholder meetings. There is a very strong push to get
more focus on dual status youth and to come up with a hybrid court process that would deal with
V. Core Reform Area: Over-Involvement of Non-delinquent Youth in Juvenile Courts - Local
area’s have worked with school resource officers and there are schools that have student
attendance review boards, which have cut down on the number of truancy referrals to the courts.
Across the state there are unruly diversion programs which diverts unruly youth for family
Ms. Kringlie shared the Juvenile Policy Board 5-year strategic plan is due for review and
proposed adding it to a future agenda in the fall of 2014 to be adopted in 2015.