John M. Suit II, 2018; Edward J. Gilliss, Esq., 2019; Joshua E. Schmerling, Esq., 2019; Norman H. Conway, 2020; Van T. Mitchell, 2021; Alice G. Pinderhughes, Esq.
Staff: Jennifer K. Botts; Benjamin B. Wilhelm.
Murphy Courts of Appeal Building, Annapolis, Maryland, November 2002. Photo by Diane F. Evartt.
Formed by the General Assembly in 1980, the Judicial Compensation Commission considers judicial compensation to ensure that highly qualified persons are attracted to the bench and judges may serve without economic hardship (Chapter 717, Acts of 1980).
Every four years, since September 2009, the Commission reviews judicial salaries and pensions and submits its recommendations to the Governor and General Assembly prior to the start of the next regular legislative session of the General Assembly (Chapter 2, Acts of 2009; Code Courts & Judicial Proceedings Article, sec 1-708).
By the fifteenth day of the legislative session, the Commission's salary recommendations are introduced as a joint resolution in each house of the General Assembly. While the General Assembly may not increase recommended salaries, it may decrease them. If the Legislature fails to adopt or amend the joint resolution within fifty days after its introduction, the salaries recommended by the Commission do apply. Commission recommendations concerning pensions are introduced in the form of legislation by the Senate President and the House Speaker and become effective only if passed by both houses.
Because Commission recommendations were not accepted by the Legislature in 2010, the Commission met in 2011 and submitted its recommendations to the General Assembly during the 2012 legislative session.
In its 2012 session, the General Assembly authorized the following judicial salaries as of July 1, 2013 (Joint Resolution 5, Acts of 2012):
Further, on July 1, 2014, annual salaries increased to:
Finally, on July 1, 2015, judicial salaries increased to:
In January 2014, the Commission did not recommend any further judicial salary increases. The next time recommendations were made was in January 2018.
In its 2018 session, the General Assembly authorized the following judicial salaries as of July 1, 2018 (Joint Resolution 3, Acts of 2018):
Further, on July 1, 2019, annual salaries increased to:
In addition, on July 1, 2020, judicial salaries will increase to:
Finally, on July 1, 2021, annual salaries will increase to:
The Governor appoints the Commission's seven members. Of these, two are nominated by the Senate President, two by the House Speaker, and one by the Maryland State Bar Association. Members serve without compensation (Code Courts & Judicial Proceedings Article, sec. 1-708).
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