June 23, 2021
This responds to your inquiry (21-91) asking 1) whether you may contact your legislators in order to ascertain what steps are necessary to initiate legislation in order to create an additional judgeship in your court to handle the increased caseload and 2) whether you may enlist their support in obtaining such legislation.
Absent specific factors creating the appearance of impropriety, the Committee has previously advised that judges may express their opinions publicly regarding court structure and operations, including the need for an additional judgeship. Thus, judges may advocate in person or in writing to public officials or governmental bodies for legislation regarding the law, the legal system or the administration of justice (see 22 NYCRR 100.4[C]).
Accordingly, you may contact your legislators about proposing such legislation and enlisting their support.
Enclosed, for your convenience, are Opinions 19-120; 17-142 and 10-63 which address this issue.
Very truly yours,
Supreme Court Justice
Acting Supreme Court Justice