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Jury commissioners stay in Crawford County

Submitted Fri, 09/06/2013 - 7:51am by DJ Bo

MEADVILLE – Jury Commissioners in Crawford County will stick around for at least the next four years.  County Commissioners last year set out to cut the elected positions, in accordance with Act 108, a state law that gave counties the ability to cut the posts if they wanted.  Act 108, though, was overturned in the spring of this year when a jury commissioners’ group sued the state.  But to further complicate things, the Supreme Court decision was then quickly invalidated by a new law signed by the governor.

None of the Crawford County Commissioners seemed especially keen on the idea of elected jury commissioners, but they agreed to let it slide for now in light of possible further legal proceedings in the future. 

Commissioner Sherman Allen says he doesn’t want to abolish the post, only to find it reinstated later and have to call a special election.

"I guess because of all this turmoil within the state, that must be the best way to do it.  Because if we do do the resolution, and they say we have to, then we could have a special election and that will cost us a lot of money."

Meanwhile commissioners in Venango County decided to get rid of the jury commissioner positions in July. 

Crawford County currently has two Jury Commissioners: Republican David Kennedy and Democrat Betty Williams. 

More than 40 Pennsylvania counties have abolished jury commissioners and have reassigned their duties to court administrative staff.