July 27, 2021
This responds to your inquiry (21-90) asking whether you, a town justice, may either individually or together with a county magistrates’ association, lobby the state legislature for a law which would permit centralized arraignments to be handled via electronic means on a local level.
The applicable principles are detailed in our Opinion 19-120. While you must avoid engaging in partisan political activity, you may support and publicly comment on measures designed to improve the law, the legal system and the administration of justice. Indeed, the Rules Governing Judicial Conduct broadly permit judges to participate in efforts to improve the law and the legal system and we have said that participation in such activities is to be encouraged. You may do so individually and/or with other judges or a judicial association.
For your convenience, we enclose Opinion 19-120 to address this issue.
Very truly yours,
Margaret T. Walsh
Supreme Court Justice
Acting Supreme Court Justice