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2009-02-18-01

The Supreme Court of South Carolina

RE:  Municipal Court Jury Lists


O R D E R


I FIND THAT Act No. 270 of 2008 amended S.C. Code §14-25-130 so as to require that the South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles (SCDMV) shall provide to the State Election Commission an electronic file of all individuals eligible for jury duty in each municipality who hold a valid South Carolina driver’s license or identification card issued pursuant to State law.  The State Election Commission is then required to merge this list with the list of registered voters in each municipality and distribute this merged list in October of each year to municipalities statewide for the preparation of jury lists for municipal courts.  SCDMV is currently unable to furnish the list described above to the State Election Commission, leaving the State Election Commission unable to provide municipalities with a 2009 jury list in compliance with Act No. 270 of 2008.  SCDMV has approached the Legislature for an extension of the effective date of Act No. 270 of 2008 to provide them time to come into compliance. However, municipalities are currently unable to draw jurors for calendar year 2009 in compliance with Act No. 270 of 2008.

THEREFORE, pursuant to Article V, Section 4, South Carolina Constitution,

IT IS ORDERED that, due to the current inability of SCDMV to comply with the provisions of Act No. 270 of 2008, the State Election Commission shall distribute municipal jury lists for calendar year 2009 comprised only of registered voters in each municipality, as was required by S.C. Code §14-25-30 prior to its amendment by Act No. 270 of 2008. Municipalities statewide are authorized to draw juries from lists comprised of registered voters provided by the State Election Commission until such time as either SCDMV comes into compliance with Act No. 270 of 2008, or the South Carolina Legislature resolves the issue.  Any juries drawn prior to such action by SCDMV or the South Carolina legislature for cases held subsequent to such action are valid pursuant to this Order. 

The provisions of this Order are effective immediately and remain in effect until amended or revoked by further Order of the Chief Justice.

s\ Jean Hoefer Toal
Jean Hoefer Toal
Chief Justice

February 18, 2009
Columbia, South Carolina