[DOCID: f:h3835ih.txt]






106th CONGRESS
  2d Session
                                H. R. 3835

  To amend title 28, United States Code, to divide New Jersey into 2 
                          judicial districts.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                             March 6, 2000

 Mr. Andrews (for himself, Mr. Saxton, Mr. LoBiondo, and Mr. Smith of 
 New Jersey) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the 
                       Committee on the Judiciary

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
  To amend title 28, United States Code, to divide New Jersey into 2 
                          judicial districts.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. FINDINGS.

    The Congress finds the following:
            (1) In 1978, the Judicial Conference of the United States 
        established a procedure for creating new Federal judicial 
        districts, which is still in force. According to the 
        ``Proceedings of the Judicial Conference, September 21-22, 
        1978'', this procedure requires that 4 principal criteria be 
        taken into consideration in evaluating the establishment of a 
        new Federal judicial district: caseload, judicial 
        administration, geography, and community convenience.
            (2) The criterion of ``caseload'' is found to include the 
        total number of Federal court cases and the number of cases per 
        Federal judge, for both civil and criminal Federal cases.
            (3)(A) The substantial criminal caseload concentrated in 
        the southern counties of New Jersey requires the creation of a 
        separate judicial district.
            (B) 281 Federal criminal cases originated in the 8 southern 
        New Jersey counties in 1998 and were handled by the 5 judges of 
        the Camden vicinage and the 3 judges of the Trenton vicinage.
            (C) The criminal caseload in the southern region of New 
        Jersey exceeds that of 51 of the current Federal judicial 
        districts. Only 44 of the 95 Federal district courts have more 
        criminal cases filed than the southern region of New Jersey.
            (D) For example, in the Eastern District of Virginia (9 
        judges), 110 criminal cases were filed in 1998. In the District 
        of Connecticut (8 judges), only 221 criminal cases were filed 
        in 1998.
            (4)(A) The substantial civil caseload concentrated in the 
        southern counties of New Jersey requires the creation of a 
        separate judicial district.
            (B) 2,116 Federal civil cases originated in the 8 southern 
        New Jersey counties in 1998 and were handled by the 5 judges of 
        the Camden vicinage and the 3 judges of the Trenton vicinage.
            (C) The civil caseload in the southern region of New Jersey 
        exceeds that of 52 of the current Federal judicial districts. 
        Only 43 out of the 95 Federal districts have more civil cases 
        filed than this region of the New Jersey District.
            (D) For example, in the Southern District of West Virginia, 
        a separate judicial district with 5 judges, only 1,315 civil 
        cases were filed in 1998. The Western District of Tennessee, 
        similarly, with 5 judges, had only 1,581 civil cases filed in 
        1998.
            (5) The criterion of ``judicial administration'' is found 
        to include the backlog of pending cases in a Federal judicial 
        district, which hinders the effective resolution of pending 
        business before the court.
            (6)(A) The size of the backlog of pending cases 
        concentrated in the southern counties of New Jersey requires 
        the creation of a separate judicial district.
            (B) The number of pending cases in the Camden vicinage of 
        New Jersey exceeds the number of cases pending before entire 
        judicial districts with similar numbers of judges, clearly 
        indicating that southern New Jersey merits a separate Federal 
        judicial district. For example, there are 1,431 civil cases 
        pending before the Camden vicinage, and only 113 of those were 
        commenced in 1999. The Western District of Tennessee, with 5 
        judges, had only 1,104 civil cases pending in 1998. The Western 
        District of Oklahoma had only 1,359 civil cases pending in 1998 
        before 6 judges. Finally, there are 161 criminal cases pending 
        before the Camden vicinage, while the entire Southern District 
        of Indiana, with 5 judges, had only 116 criminal cases pending 
        in 1998.
            (7) The criterion of ``geography'' is found to mean the 
        accessibility of the central administration of the Federal 
        judicial district to officers of the court, parties with 
        business before the court, and other citizens living within the 
        Federal judicial district.
            (8)(A) The distance between the northern and southern 
        regions of New Jersey creates a substantial barrier to the 
        efficient administration of justice.
            (B) The distance from Newark, New Jersey to Camden, New 
        Jersey is more than 85 miles.
            (C) When a new Federal court district was created in 
        Louisiana in 1971, the distance between New Orleans and Baton 
        Rouge (nearly 80 miles) was cited as a major factor in creating 
        a new district court, as travel difficulties were impeding the 
        timely administration of justice.
            (9) The criterion of ``community convenience'' is found to 
        mean the extent to which creating a new Federal judicial 
        district will allow the court to better serve the population 
        and diverse communities of the area.
            (10)(A) New Jersey's culturally and regionally diverse 
        population of 8,000,000 citizens, widely distributed across a 
        large State, is inconvenienced by having only 1 judicial 
        district.
            (B) Of the 25 States that have only a single Federal 
        judicial district (including Puerto Rico, the United States 
        territories, and the District of Columbia), New Jersey has the 
        highest population.
            (C) More than a dozen States have smaller populations than 
        New Jersey, yet they have multiple Federal judicial districts, 
        including Washington, Oklahoma, Iowa, Georgia, West Virginia, 
        and Missouri.
            (11) In evaluating the creation of a new Southern District 
        of New Jersey, the Judicial Conference should seek the views of 
        the chief judge of the affected district, the judicial council 
        for the affected circuit court, and the affected United States 
        Attorney as representative of the views of the Department of 
        Justice, as required in the procedure established by the 
        ``Proceedings of the Judicial Conference, September 21-22, 
        1978''.

SEC. 2. ESTABLISHMENT OF 2 DISTRICTS IN NEW JERSEY.

    (a) Creation.--Section 110 of title 28, United States Code, is 
amended to read as follows:
``Sec. 110. New Jersey
    ``New Jersey is divided into 2 judicial districts to be known as 
the Northern and Southern Districts of New Jersey.

                          ``Northern District

    ``(a) The Northern District comprises the counties of Bergen, 
Essex, Hudson, Hunterdon, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, 
Somerset, Sussex, Union, and Warren.
``Court for the Northern District shall be held at Newark.

                          ``Southern District

    ``(b) The Southern District comprises the counties of Atlantic, 
Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Gloucester, Mercer, and 
Salem.
``Court for the Southern District shall be held at Camden and 
        Trenton.''.
    (b) Judgeships.--The item relating to New Jersey in the table set 
forth in section 133(a) of title 28, United States Code, is amended to 
read as follows:

``New Jersey:
        ``Northern.............................................      9 
        ``Southern.............................................    8''.
    (c) Bankruptcy Judgeships.--The item relating to New Jersey in the 
table set forth in section 152(a)(1) of title 28, United States Code, 
is amended to read as follows:

``New Jersey:
        ``Northern.............................................      4 
        ``Southern.............................................    4''.

SEC. 3. DISTRICT JUDGES, BANKRUPTCY JUDGES, MAGISTRATE JUDGES, UNITED 
              STATES ATTORNEY, UNITED STATES MARSHAL, AND FEDERAL 
              PUBLIC DEFENDER.

    (a) Transfer of District Judges.--(1) Any district judge of the 
District Court of New Jersey who is holding office on the day before 
the effective date of this Act and whose official duty station is in 
Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Hunterdon, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, 
Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union, or Warren County shall, on or after 
such effective date, be a district judge for the Northern District of 
New Jersey. Any district judge of the District Court of New Jersey who 
is holding office on the day before the effective date of this Act and 
whose official duty station is in Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape 
May, Cumberland, Gloucester, Mercer, or Salem County shall, on and 
after such effective date, be a district judge of the Southern District 
of New Jersey.
    (2) Whenever a vacancy occurs in a judgeship in either judicial 
district of New Jersey, the vacancy shall first be offered to those 
judges appointed before the enactment of this Act and in active service 
in the other judicial district of New Jersey at the time of the 
vacancy, and of those judges wishing to fill the vacancy, the judge 
most senior in service shall fill that vacancy. In such a case, the 
President shall appoint a judge to fill the vacancy resulting in the 
district of New Jersey from which such judge left office.
    (b) Transfer of Bankruptcy and Magistrate Judges.--Any bankruptcy 
judge or magistrate judge of the District Court of New Jersey who is 
holding office on the day before the effective date of this Act and 
whose official duty station is in Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Hunterdon, 
Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union, 
or Warren County shall, on or after such effective date, be a 
bankruptcy judge or magistrate judge, as the case may be, for the 
Northern District of New Jersey. Any bankruptcy judge or magistrate 
judge of the District Court of New Jersey who is holding office on the 
day before the effective date of this Act and whose official duty 
station is in Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, 
Gloucester, Mercer, or Salem County shall, on and after such effective 
date, be a bankruptcy judge or magistrate judge, as the case may be, of 
the Southern District of New Jersey.
    (c) United States Attorney, United States Marshal, and Federal 
Public Defender.--
            (1) Those in office.--This Act and the amendments made by 
        this Act shall not affect the tenure of office of the United 
        States attorney, the United States marshal, and the Federal 
        Public Defender, for the District of New Jersey who are in 
        office on the effective date of this Act, except that such 
        individuals shall be the United States attorney, the United 
        States marshal, and the Federal Public Defender, respectively, 
        for the Northern District of New Jersey as of such effective 
        date.
            (2) Appointments.--The President shall appoint, by and with 
        the advice and consent of the Senate, a United States attorney 
        and a United States marshal for the Southern District of New 
        Jersey. The Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit shall 
        appoint a Federal Public Defender for the Southern District of 
        New Jersey.
    (d) Pending Cases Not Affected.--This Act and the amendments made 
by this Act shall not affect any action commenced before the effective 
date of this Act and pending in the United States District Court for 
the District of New Jersey on such date.
    (e) Juries Not Affected.--This Act and the amendments made by this 
Act shall not affect the composition, or preclude the service, of any 
grand or petit jury summoned, empaneled, or actually serving in the 
Judicial District of New Jersey on the effective date of this Act.

SEC. 4. EFFECTIVE DATE.

    (a) In General.--This Act and the amendments made by this Act shall 
take effect 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act.
    (b) Appointments.--Notwithstanding subsection (a), the President 
and the Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit may make the 
appointments under section 3(c)(2) at any time after the date of the 
enactment of this Act.
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