Hagel Cosponsors Legislation to Restore Nebraska Judgeship
May 8th, 2007 - Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE) joined Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) today in introducing legislation to extend five temporary federal district judgeships. This legislation would restore the temporary judgeship that the District of Nebraska lost in 2004 with the retirement of Judge Thomas Shanahan. Senator Hagel has worked closely with Chairman Leahy in introducing this legislation. Since 2000, Senator Hagel has worked to save the temporary Nebraska federal judgeship and convert it to permanent.
“With Judge Shanahan’s retirement in 2004, Nebraska lost a judgeship it urgently needs. Nebraska’s three remaining permanent federal judges now carry the sixth highest caseload in the country. The criminal caseload has increased 97% over the last five years. I will work with my colleagues to ensure that this critical fourth federal judgeship for Nebraska is enacted as soon as possible,” said Hagel.
Currently, Nebraska has three federal district court judges who handle the entire federal caseload for the State. The Judicial Conference, which makes recommendations to Congress regarding the need for judgeships, consistently recommends that a new permanent judgeship be established in Nebraska. The Senate passed legislation cosponsored by Senator Hagel in the 108th Congress which would have made Nebraska’s temporary judgeship permanent. The House failed to act on the measure.
This legislation will now be sent to the Senate Judiciary Committee for consideration.