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Lancman on Judiciary Committee – QNS.com

Lancman on Judiciary Committee

Assemblymember Rory Lancman was recently appointed to the State Assembly’s Judiciary Committee. The 16-member committee, currently chaired by Assemblymember Helene Weinstein, oversees the New York State (NYS) court system.
“I am honored to have been appointed to the judiciary committee at this critical moment,” Lancman said. “With the federal courts having declared our system of electing State Supreme Court justices unconstitutional, it falls to the legislature to establish a judicial selection system that is open, fair, representative and dignified.”
As part of the position, Lancman, a graduate of Columbia Law School and a former board member of the NYS Trial Lawyers Association, hopes to help add judges to the borough’s court system and reduce docket overcrowding.
“Our judicial system faces other, equally-monumental challenges, such as simplifying our fractured court structure, relieving overcrowded dockets particularly in Queens, and preserving access to the courts for ordinary New Yorkers.”
Since his appointment, Lancman has already participated in his first committee meeting, as well as a joint Judiciary hearing, where he quizzed NYS Chief Administrative Judge Jonathan Lippman about the inadequate number of civil court judges in Queens.
“Everyone who is elected to the legislature comes with their background and experience of whatever profession they are in. That doesn’t make a conflict,” Lancman said.
“As a lawyer I don’t have a conflict voting on things having to do with the system of justice, just as a tenant would not have a conflict voting on issues that include rent and property law,” he said, explaining that the State Assembly has committees regulating many aspects of residents’ lives. “I’m a homeowner; would I not sit on the Real Property Tax[ation] committee? Should I not sponsor legislation to lower property taxes?”
Lancman pointed to his background as a lawyer as part of the reason he was elected to office in the first place, and added that several other members of the Assembly’s Judiciary Committee are practicing lawyers as well.
Through his appointment, however, Lancman is prohibited from working on cases where a plaintiff sues the State. To his knowledge, he has not been involved in any such cases in the past.

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