Assembly approves proposed amendment to allow appellate court

A proposed constitutional amendment to allow lawmakers to create an intermediate appellate court in Nevada has made it through the Legislature once.

But before Senate Joint Resolution 5 is put to the voters, it must go through the 2005 Legislature.

The resolution would allow the Legislature to create a court of appeals between the state Supreme Court and the 50-plus district courts in the state. Members of the Supreme Court have argued for years an appellate level would take a huge load off them.

Under the existing system, every appeal must be handled by the Supreme Court, which Nevada's justices say gives them one of the heaviest caseloads of any supreme court in the U.S.

The amendment, if approved by voters in 2006, would permit creation of an appellate court consisting of three or more justices who would be elected to six-year terms like district and supreme court judges are now.

The proposal was introduced and approved by the Senate earlier this year. It passed the Assembly on Monday 42-0.


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