A N A C T
RELATING TO COURTS AND CIVIL PROCEDURE -- COURTS -- FAMILY COURT
It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows:
SECTION 1. Section 8-10-23.1 of the General Laws in Chapter 8-10 entitled "Family Court" is hereby amended to read as follows:
8-10-23.1. Statewide juvenile hearing board. -- (a) The chief judge of the family court shall appoint a statewide juvenile hearing board coordinator who is qualified by education, training, previous experience in professional social welfare, personality, character and special aptitude for the work, to serve at the pleasure of the chief judge. Such juvenile hearing board coordinator shall provide education, training, data collection and analysis, coordination and assistance to cities and towns in the establishment and maintenance of juvenile hearing boards and teen courts. Juvenile hearing boards and/or teen courts shall report such data as deemed necessary by the family court to perform the functions of such juvenile hearing board coordinator. No juvenile hearing board or teen court in the State of Rhode Island shall hear, or dispose of offenses that constitute felony offenses if committed by an adult, except by the express written consent of the Chief Justice of the family court; nor shall any juvenile hearing board or teen court hear or dispose of any offense which has been amended from a felony offense to a misdemeanor offense, except by the express written consent of the Chief Justice of the family court. Juveniles, wherever they may live, upon a decision to refer said juvenile to the juvenile hearing board or teen court shall be referred to the hearing board or teen court in the city or town where the offense was committed; provided however if said city or town does not have a hearing board or teen court, the juvenile shall be referred to the hearing board or teen court where the juvenile resides. The Statewide hearing board coordinator shall be responsible for setting up a statewide community service program which may be utilized by any hearing board or teen court.
(b) The position of statewide juvenile hearing board coordinator shall be a pilot program which shall commence on July 1, 1998 and terminate on June 30, 2001, unless extended by the general assembly.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect upon passage.