The Yolo Superior Court is accepting applications for the 2014-15 Yolo County Grand Jury. Each July 1, the court impanels 19 grand jurors who serve as an arm of the judicial system, but act as an entirely independent body.
The primary civil function of the grand jury is to review the operations of city and county government as well as other tax-supported agencies and special districts. Based on these reviews, the grand jury publishes its findings and may recommend constructive action to improve the quality and effectiveness of local government.
Another responsibility of the grand jury is to consider criminal indictments based on evidence presented. The grand jury also investigates complaints from private citizens, local government officials or government employees.
Eligibility requirements for grand jury service are:
* You must be a citizen of the United States;
* You must be 18 years of age or older;
*You have been a resident of Yolo County for at least one year before selection;
* You are in possession of your natural faculties, of ordinary intelligence, of sound judgment and fair character;
* You possess sufficient knowledge of the English language;
* You are not currently serving as a trial juror in any court of this state;
* You have not been discharged as a grand juror in any court of this state within one year;
* You have not been convicted of malfeasance in office or any felony or other high crime; and
* You are not serving as an elected public officer.
“Although grand jury service is important work and a considerable responsibility, it is also an exciting opportunity to serve your community and learn more about local government,” a news release said. “It can be an incredibly rewarding and satisfying experience.”
If selected, the term of service is a period of one year, from July 1 through June 30. Applicants should be committed to serving the entire year.
The average time commitment is approximately 25 to 40 hours per month. Generally, the grand jury meets twice per month, usually in the evening. For each day’s attendance, reimbursement to grand jurors is at the rate of $15 per day and 55 cents per mile round-trip from their home to the meeting location.
There are occasions where additional committee meetings may occur during business hours.
There are two training opportunities soon after the new term begins. One is a half-day session held in Woodland and the other is a two-day seminar, sponsored by the California Grand Jurors Association, which takes place in the Sacramento area.
Applications are available online at www.yolo.courts.ca.gov, by calling 530-406-6828; or by writing to Yolo Superior Court Jury Services, 725 Court St., Room 303, Woodland, CA 95695.
Applications must be submitted by Feb. 28.