Read 1st time February 21, 2006 and copies ordered printed.





To repeal section 479.020, RSMo, and to enact in lieu thereof one new section relating to retirement age for municipal court judges.

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the state of Missouri, as follows:

            Section A. Section 479.020, RSMo, is repealed and one new section enacted in lieu thereof, to be known as section 479.020, to read as follows:

            479.020. 1. Any city, town or village, including those operating under a constitutional or special charter, may, and cities with a population of four hundred thousand or more shall, provide by ordinance or charter for the selection, tenure and compensation of a municipal judge or judges consistent with the provisions of this chapter who shall have original jurisdiction to hear and determine all violations against the ordinances of the municipality. The method of selection of municipal judges shall be provided by charter or ordinance. Each municipal judge shall be selected for a term of not less than two years as provided by charter or ordinance.

            2. Except where prohibited by charter or ordinance, the municipal judge may be a part-time judge and may serve as municipal judge in more than one municipality.

            3. No person shall serve as a municipal judge of any municipality with a population of seven thousand five hundred or more or of any municipality in a county of the first class with a charter form of government unless the person is licensed to practice law in this state unless, prior to January 2, 1979, such person has served as municipal judge of that same municipality for at least two years.

            4. Notwithstanding any other statute, a municipal judge need not be a resident of the municipality or of the circuit in which the municipal judge serves except where ordinance or charter provides otherwise. Municipal judges shall be residents of Missouri.

            5. Judges selected under the provisions of this section shall be municipal judges of the circuit court and shall be divisions of the circuit court of the circuit in which the municipality, or major geographical portion thereof, is located. The judges of these municipal divisions shall be subject to the rules of the circuit court which are not inconsistent with the rules of the supreme court. The presiding judge of the circuit shall have general administrative authority over the judges and court personnel of the municipal divisions within the circuit.

            6. No municipal judge shall hold any other office in the municipality which the municipal judge serves as judge. The compensation of any municipal judge and other court personnel shall not be dependent in any way upon the number of cases tried, the number of guilty verdicts reached or the amount of fines imposed or collected.

            7. Municipal judges shall be at least twenty-one years of age. No person shall serve as municipal judge after that person has reached that person's [seventy-fifth] sixty-fifth birthday.             8. Within six months after selection for the position, each municipal judge who is not licensed to practice law in this state shall satisfactorily complete the course of instruction for municipal judges prescribed by the supreme court. The state courts administrator shall certify to the supreme court the names of those judges who satisfactorily complete the prescribed course. If a municipal judge fails to complete satisfactorily the prescribed course within six months after the municipal judge's selection as municipal judge, the municipal judge's office shall be deemed vacant and such person shall not thereafter be permitted to serve as a municipal judge, nor shall any compensation thereafter be paid to such person for serving as municipal judge.