APPOINTMENT TO GOVERNMENTAL COMMITTEE

Opinion No. 138 (1991)


FACTS ASSUMED: The statutory duties of the Local Government Records Committee are to review and approve the State Library and Archives Commission's schedules and rules for the retention and care of local records, and to advise that Commission on all matters concerning the management and preservation of such records. Government Code Section 441.162 provides that the person who is appointed chairman of the Committee must be an active or retired district judge.

QUESTION: Would an active judge, or a retired district judge subject to assignment, violate Canon 5G of the Code of Judicial Conduct by serving on the Local Government Records Committee?

ANSWER: No. The Committee concludes that service on this Committee would not violate the provision of Canon 5G that a judge should not accept appointment to a governmental committee that is concerned with issues of fact or policy other than the improvement of the law, the legal system, or the administration of justice.

The statute referred to in the question manifests a legislative intent to coordinate the record keeping responsibilities of the three branches of government, and the Committee concludes that a judge's participation in that statutory arrangement would serve a proper judicial purpose.