New Jersey Supreme Court Directive #9-90 authorizes the organization of a Municipal Division in each vicinage. A Presiding Judge for Municipal Courts, under the direction of the Assignment Judge, supervises the division and oversees all municipal courts in Morris and Sussex counties. The division is comprised of a division manager and professional staff support who monitor the operations of the municipal courts, assist with recruitment of municipal court personnel and work with local bodies of government when issues concerning the court are in question.
Presiding Judge: Andrew Wubbenhourst, P.J.M.C. 973-998-7073
Division Manager: Tricia Nikiel 973-656-3984
Community Dispute Resolution Committee 973-656-3979
Major areas of services and responsibility include:
- Review of court operations to ensure compliance with state legislation, court rule, and directives as they relate to the municipal court. The review process includes annual visits to the 45 municipal courts in the Morris/Sussex Vicinage. The visit to each court results in the completion of a formal report presented to the Municipal Court Judge, Municipal Division Presiding Judge, and Vicinage Assignment Judge regarding the status of the court.
- Ongoing assistance to municipal court personnel in the areas of case management, facilities planning, budget preparation, financial management, and training.
- In accordance with R. 1:40, Complementary Dispute Resolution Programs, monitoring of mediation programs in the municipal courts. Community Dispute Resolution Committees (CDC) are designed to provide citizens with access to an alternative forum to settle disputes. The committees are made up of volunteers from the community who work with the disputing parties to develop a solution that is mutually agreed upon (a written consent agreement) and signed by both parties.
New for 2016:
The Municipal Division is looking forward to a number of exciting initiatives in 2016, most notably the implementation of Criminal Justice Reform. These changes will result in the courts moving away from a system of monetary bail and towards a system where those accused of a crime are released with pre-trial conditions. These laws go into effect statewide on January 1, 2017, however the Morris-Sussex Vicinage has the privilege of being one of the pilot vicinages along with Passaic and Camden. The roll out for the pilot programs is slated to begin sometime in the spring of 2016.
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Information for Volunteers: