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Minutes for HB2334 - Committee on Judiciary

Short Title

Expanding the list of people before whom a deposition shall not be taken.

Minutes Content for Mon, Feb 18, 2019

Natalie Scott, Assistant Revisor, provided an overview of HB2334. Ms. Scott addressed questions from the membership. (Attachment 48)

Darlene Kelly testified in support of HB2334. Ms. Kelly explained the problems she had personally experienced with 3rd party court reporting being provided by agencies outside the state of Kansas. She feels the overall content, corrections, and reliability of reports from these agencies are in question.  She asked for favorable passage of HB2334 in order to maintain the integrity of sworn testimony and ensure impartial and fair practices through the judicial system.  (Attachment 49)

Thomas M. Warner, Jr. testified in support of HB2334 stating he is deeply troubled by court reporters that contract with parties in litigation.  When a court reporter enters into a contract with one side of the litigation, this arrangement threatens the impartiality of the of the court reporter and the integrity of the record. The legislation being proposed prohibits those with a financial interest in the proceeding/case from being involved with taking the record. The American Judges Association support legislative and judicial measures that prohibit financial arrangements between court reporters and parties in interest stating, “Court reporters are officers of the court whose impartiality, as with judges, must remain utterly beyond question in order to ensure the enduring confidence and faith from which our judicial system derives its legitimacy.”  Mr. Warner feels permitting a party in litigation to have a contractual relationship with an officer of the court in an adversarial process does not square with the principles of impartiality, fairness and the avoidance of even the appearance of impropriety that form the basis for our system of justice. (Attachment 50)

Both proponent presenters stood for questions from the membership.

Written testimony in support of HB2334 was submitted by:

  • Jason P. Watkins, Executive Director, Kansas Independent Court Reporters Association (Attachment 51)
  • Rick J. Flores, Freelance Court Reporter, Wichita, Kansas (Attachment 52)

Chairperson Patton closed the hearing on HB2334.

Chairperson Patton informed the membership they may work the following bills on Thursday, February 21, 2019  HB2072, HB2162, HB2178, HB2191, HB2206, HB2211

He adjourned the meeting at 5:00 pm.