HOUSE OF DELEGATES

STANDING COMMITTEES

JUDICIARY COMMITTEE

ORIGIN & FUNCTIONS


[photo, House Office Building, 6 Bladen St., Annapolis, Maryland] Origins of the Judiciary Committee trace first to the Committee on Aggrievances, which began in 1692, and then to the Committee on Aggrievances and Courts of Justice which functioned by 1722 in the Lower House of the General Assembly. By 1751, the Committee was styled the Committee on Grievances and Courts of Justice. Under that name, the Committee continued until 1852. Some of the Committee's legislative concerns had been assumed in 1828 by the Crimes and Punishments Committee, a standing committee established that year. Responsibilities of both these committees were assigned to the new Judiciary Committee in 1852, when the House of Delegates established the Standing Committee on Judiciary.

House Office Building, 6 Bladen St., Annapolis, Maryland, January 2007. Photo by Diane F. Evartt.


At its first legislative session following ratification of the Constitution of 1851, the House formed the Judiciary Committee to consider laws relating to a court system, newly altered by Maryland's second constitution.

Today, the Committee still considers legislation relating to judicial administration and court structure. It also is concerned with administrative law; correctional facilities and services; criminal and civil laws, penalties, immunities, and procedures; drunk and drugged driving and jailable motor vehicle offenses; family law; juvenile justice; the legal profession; and public safety.

Twenty-two delegates serve on this committee (House Rules 17, 18; Code State Government Article, secs. 2-1102 through 2-1105).


SUBCOMMITTEES

Under the Judiciary Committeem subcommittees review and evaluate proposed legislation for the whole COmmittee. Presently, five subcommittees conduct this work: Civil Law and Procedure; Criminal Justice; Family Law; Juvenile Law; and Public Safety. The Judiciary Committee also is aided by the Law Enforcement Officers Public Information Work Group.

CIVIL LAW & PROCEDURE SUBCOMMITTEE
The Civil Law and Procedure Subcommittee formed in 1995.

CRIMINAL LAW & PROCEDURE SUBCOMMITTEE
In 1995, the Criminal Law and Procedure Subcommittee was established as the Criminal Justice Subcommittee. It adopted its present name in January 2019.

FAMILY & JUVENILE LAW SUBCOMMITTEE
The Family Law Subcommittee began as the Family and Juvenile Law Subcommittee in 1995. In January 2003, that subcommittee divided into two separate units: the Family Law Subcommittee, and the Juvenile Law Subcommittee. In January 2021, the Family Law Subcommittee and the Juvenile Law Subcommittee merged to again form the Family and Juvenile Law Subcommittee.

LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS PUBLIC INFORMATION WORK GROUP
In 2019, the Judiciary Committee formed the Law Enforcement Officers Public Information Work Group.

PUBLIC SAFETY SUBCOMMITTEE
In January 2019, the Public Safety Subcommittee convened.

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