Section 1. Policy and Purpose.
The North Dakota Judicial System encourages greater understanding and exchange of information between the tribal and state judicial systems in North Dakota. The Committee on Tribal and State Court Affairs is a vehicle for expanding tribal and state court judges' knowledge of the respective judicial systems; for identifying and discussing issues regarding court practices, procedures, and administration which are of common concern to members of tribal and state judicial systems; and for cultivating mutual respect for and cooperation between tribal and state judicial systems.
Section 2. Creation.
The Committee on Tribal and State Court Affairs is a standing committee of the North Dakota Supreme Court. The Chief Justice appoints the chair and vice-chair of the Committee.
Section 3. Membership—Terms—Rotation.
A. The Committee on Tribal and State Court Affairs consists of the following members:
1. Two state court judges appointed by the Chief Justice for three-year terms.
2. The Chief Tribal Judge, or designee, of each of the five tribal judicial systems serving reservation areas in North Dakota.
3. Two representatives each, selected according to subsection B, of tribal and state court administrative support services, including clerks of court. Each representative is limited to one three-year term, but may be reappointed as provided in subsection B.
4. Two public members, who have an interest or expertise in the operation of tribal and state judicial systems, appointed by the Chief Justice for three-year terms.
5. One representative each, selected according to subsection B, of tribal and state juvenile courts. Each representative is limited to one three-year term, but may be reappointed as provided in subsection B.
6. The Director, or designee, of the Northern Plains Tribal Judicial Training Institute.
7. The Executive Director, or designee, of the North Dakota Indian Affairs Commission.
8. The Chairperson of the Indian Law Section of the State Bar Association.
B. At the Committee's first meeting, the judge members of the Committee shall forward to the Chief Justice two nominations for each tribal and state court administrative support services and juvenile court representative. The Chief Justice shall appoint two members for each administrative support services representative category and one member for each juvenile court representative category. Before expiration of the term of a tribal or state court administrative support services or juvenile court representative, or in the event of a vacancy during a term, the judge members of the Committee shall forward to the Chief Justice two nominations for each present or impending vacancy. If a suitable replacement cannot be identified, the serving member may be reappointed.
C. Each member who serves for a specified term serves until the member's successor is appointed. State court judges and public members may not serve more than three consecutive three-year terms. A state judge or public member who served three consecutive terms is eligible for reappointment after a six-year break in service.
D. Members of the Committee serve without compensation for their services, but are entitled to reimbursement at state rates for actual expenses.
Section 4. Duties of the Committee.
A. The Committee shall:
1. Study the comparative operation, practices, and procedures of tribal and state judicial systems for purposes of identifying possible areas of mutually agreeable cooperative action;
2. Serve as a forum for discussion of areas of common concern shared by tribal and state judges and judicial system personnel;
3. Serve as a vehicle for establishing and maintaining a long-term, continuing relationship between tribal and state judicial systems; and
4. Review any other matters referred to it by the Supreme Court, a tribal court, or a tribal council.
B. The Committee may recommend to the Supreme Court, tribal courts, or tribal councils, potential agreements, informal inter-system working relationships, education initiatives, or proposed or revised statutes or rules to resolve conflicts and to remove barriers to understanding and cooperation between tribal and state judicial systems.
Section 5. Meeting Locations.
The Committee, at the direction of the Chair, shall periodically meet on each of the four reservations in North Dakota and at other locations determined appropriate by the Chair.
Section 6. Staffing.
Staffing for the Committee will be provided through staff of the Office of State Court Administrator.
Dated March 1, 2006.
SOURCE: Adopted on an emergency basis effective May 18, 1994; amended and readopted effective October 3, 1994; amended and readopted under § 6, effective March 13, 1996, and notice given N.D.R.Proc.R. § 7. The Court does not apply the provisions of N.D.R.Proc.R. § 3. Amended effective April 1, 2006 (Supreme Court No. 20060059); January 1, 2018.