Government watchdogs wanted | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Government watchdogs wanted

Provided to the Tribune

The opportunity for citizens to submit their names for possible nomination for the 2005-06 El Dorado County Grand Jury is now available. The grand jury acts as an investigative body to ensure that county, special district and city government is being effectively run. The grand jury is not a jury for a trial.

The judges of the Superior Court shall select names from those submitted as well as other nominees, as well as currently seated grand jurors if they wish to be held over, to be put into the jury pool. Nineteen jurors are then selected in a random drawing from this pool. Jurors serve for a period of one year. Final selection will take place the end of June and you must be present.

The El Dorado County Grand Jury generally meets two or more times per month to conduct its regular business. In addition to the monthly business meeting, members frequently meet in committee meetings to study particular concerns and problems. Each grand jury sets its own meeting schedule. Jurors also are called upon to confer with government officials and other citizens in order to gain information and insight as to the matters that are under investigation. While being a grand juror is not a full-time job, it does require a substantial time commitment. This time includes attendance at the monthly business meeting and committee meetings, investigating, and preparing written reports.

Meetings are compensated at the maximum rate of $15 per day of meeting, plus a mileage expense is compensated at the rate payable to employees of El Dorado County for each mile actually and necessarily traveled for purposes of said sessions or committee work. No other compensation is provided.

The grand jury is an excellent vehicle for committed men and women to keep government close to and responsible to all of our county’s citizens. Applicants must be U.S. citizens, at least 18 years of age, have lived in the county for at least one year prior to application, and cannot hold an elected office.

Qualified citizens who have an interest in this unique type of service may pick up an application at the Superior Court, 4495 Main Street, Placerville, CA 95667. The application is also available online or you can call (530) 621-5530 and request an application/questionnaire to be mailed to you.

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May 17 is the deadline for submitting your application for Grand Jury service. The application may be e-mailed to rbearden@eldoradocourt.org or submitted to El Dorado County Superior Court, 3321 Cameron Park Drive, Cameron Park, CA 95682.

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