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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

488A.03 Court administrators, deputies.

Subdivision 1. Repealed, Ex1971 c 8 s 2

Subd. 2. Oath, bond. (a) The court administrator shall take and subscribe an oath to support the Constitution of the United States and the state of Minnesota and to perform faithfully the duties of the court administrator's office.

(b) The court administrator shall execute to the county of Hennepin a penal bond in such sum and with such surety as the county board directs, conditioned that:

(1) The court administrator will account to and pay over to the county treasurer as required by law all money belonging to or to be paid to the county.

(2) The court administrator will pay over to all persons on demand all money to which they are entitled which comes into the court administrator's hands as court administrator.

(3) At the expiration of tenure in office the court administrator will forthwith pay to such county all money to which it is entitled and to the court administrator's successor in office all other money then remaining in the court administrator's hands which came into the court administrator's hands as court administrator.

(c) The court administrator may not enter upon official duties until the court administrator's appointment, oath and bond are filed with the county auditor.

Subd. 3. Repealed, 1965 c 845 s 4

Subd. 3a. Deputy court administrator. (a) The court has one chief deputy court administrator and such number of assistant chief deputy court administrators Grade II, assistant chief deputy court administrators, Grade I, deputy court administrators and stenographers as the court administrator, with the approval of a majority of the judges, deems necessary from time to time, but no new or additional positions may be created without the consent of the county board.

(b) With the approval of a majority of the judges the court administrator shall appoint deputy court administrators.

(c) Each appointment shall be made under the hand of the court administrator and seal of the court and the approval of a majority of the judges shall be endorsed thereon.

(d) Each deputy shall take and subscribe an oath similar to that prescribed for the court administrator and shall execute a bond to the county of Hennepin for the faithful performance of duties in such amount and with such terms, conditions, and surety as the county board directs. No deputy may enter upon an office and duties before appointment, oath, and bond are filed with the county auditor.

(e) The appointments of the deputy court administrators shall be for terms of six years from their respective dates of appointment and shall not expire or be suspended by reason of the suspension, removal, termination of appointment, death, or other incapacity of the court administrator. At any time within six months from the date of initial appointment, a deputy court administrator may be removed and the deputy court administrator's appointment terminated, with or without cause and without prior notice or hearing. At any time a deputy court administrator may be suspended without pay for a period not exceeding 30 days, with or without cause, after hearing before a majority of the judges. Except as otherwise provided herein, a deputy court administrator, during the deputy court administrator's term, may be removed and the appointment terminated only for cause after notice and a hearing before a majority of the judges. Any termination, removal, or suspension provided for in this subdivision shall be made by a majority of the judges.

(f) The court administrator shall delegate, supervise, and expedite the work and accounting of the deputy court administrators. The court administrator is not personally responsible for their acts beyond the court administrator's responsibility for proper delegation and supervision.

(g) Each deputy may administer oaths and affirmations, and take acknowledgments and shall perform the duties and exercise the powers of the court administrator which are delegated to the deputy by the court administrator or by a majority of the judges in the event of the death or disability of the court administrator.

Subd. 4. Powers and duties; supervision of judges. (a) The court administrator may administer oaths and affirmations and take acknowledgments. The court administrator has all the powers and shall perform all of the duties usually incident to the office of a court administrator of a court of record or necessary to carry out the purposes of this act.

(b) Under the supervision and approval of a majority of the judges and with the consent of the county board the court administrator shall procure at the expense of the county all blanks, stationery, books, furniture, furnishings, and supplies necessary for the use of the court and its officers and jurors.

(c) In the performance of all the court administrator's duties the court administrator is subject to the control and supervision of the judges.

Subd. 5. Records, process and accounts. The court administrator shall make minutes, records and indices of all proceedings; enter all orders, judgments and sentences; issue commitments, execution and all other process; keep proper accounts; have the custody and care of all books, files, accounts, exhibits, papers and records of the court, and tax all costs and disbursements.

Subd. 6. Disposition of fines, fees and other money; accounts. (a) Except as otherwise provided herein and except as otherwise provided by law, the court administrator shall pay to the Hennepin county treasurer all fines and penalties collected by the court administrator, all fees collected by the court administrator for court administrator's services, all sums forfeited to the court as hereinafter provided, and all other money received by the court administrator.

(b) The court administrator shall provide the county treasurer with the name of the municipality or other subdivision of government where the offense was committed and the name and official position of the officer who prosecuted the offense for each fine or penalty, and the total amount of fines or penalties collected for each such municipality or other subdivision of government or for the county.

(c) At the beginning of the first day of any month the amount owing to any municipality or county in the hands of the court administrator shall not exceed $5,000.

(d) On or before the last day of each month the county treasurer shall pay over to the treasurer of each municipality or subdivision of government in Hennepin County all fines or penalties collected during the previous month for offenses committed within such municipality or subdivision of government, except that all such fines and penalties attributable to cases in which the county attorney had charge of the prosecution shall be retained by the county treasurer and credited to the county general revenue fund.

(e) Amounts represented by checks issued by the court administrator or received by the court administrator which have not cleared by the end of the month may be shown on the monthly account as having been paid or received, subject to adjustment on later monthly accounts.

(f) The court administrator may receive negotiable instruments in payment of fines, penalties, fees or other obligations as conditional payments, and is not held accountable therefor until collection in cash is made and then only to the extent of the net collection after deduction of the necessary expense of collection.

Subd. 7. Payment of witness fees and mileage. The court administrator shall pay such fees and mileage to witnesses as may be ordered by any judge in any action or proceeding involving a charged violation of a criminal law or municipal ordinance. The court administrator shall obtain receipts therefor as vouchers for the sums paid and shall deduct these payments from the amount otherwise due to the county.

Subd. 8. Abandonment of deposits and bail. (a) All sums deposited with the court administrator to cover witness fees, jury fees, court administrator's fees or the fees of police officers shall be deemed abandoned and forfeited if the witness fees are not disbursed or the services covered by the fees are not performed and the person entitled to refund thereof does not file a written demand for refund with the court administrator within six months from the date of trial, dismissal or striking of the cause as to jury fees and from the date of deposit as to other fees.

(b) Any bail deposited with the court administrator and not forfeited by court order shall be deemed abandoned and forfeited if the person entitled to refund does not file a written demand for refund with the court administrator within six months from the date when the person became entitled to the refund. All such forfeited sums shall be paid over by the court administrator to the county treasurer promptly.

(c) Any judge may order any sums so forfeited under (a) or (b) to be reinstated for cause and the court administrator shall then refund accordingly. The county treasurer shall reimburse the court administrator if the court administrator refunds the deposit upon such an order and obtains a receipt to be used as a voucher.

Subd. 9. Disposition of forfeited sums. All sums collected on any bail, bond, or recognizance forfeited by court order shall be paid to the county of Hennepin to be applied to the support of the law library of the county. The receipt of the county treasurer to the court administrator shall be a sufficient voucher therefor. When the sums so forfeited, minus refunds, during any calendar year equal $2,500, all sums in excess thereof shall be paid to the county treasurer who shall remit said sums to the municipality or subdivision of government in which the violation occurred in accordance with the provisions of this act. Such payments to the county shall be made periodically but not prior to six months from the date of the order for forfeiture. During that six month period, but not thereafter, any judge may set aside the forfeiture order upon proper showing of cause therefor. No obligation to pay to the county sums so ordered forfeited exists unless the forfeiture is not set aside within said six-month period. For the purpose of determining when said $2,500 shall have accrued to the county law library the final forfeiture shall be deemed to occur at the end of the six-month period.

Subd. 10. Order for prisoner release. When a person is confined to the Minneapolis Workhouse and a fine is remitted, a sentence stayed or suspended, the person released on parole, or the release of the person secured by payment of the fine in default of which the person was committed, the prisoner shall not be released except upon order of the court. A written transcript of such order signed by the court administrator and under the court's seal shall be furnished to the superintendent of the Minneapolis Workhouse. All costs of confinement or imprisonment in any jail or workhouse shall be paid by the municipality or subdivision of government in Hennepin County in which the violation occurred, except that the county shall pay all costs of confinement or imprisonment incurred as a result of a prosecution of a gross misdemeanor.

Subd. 11. Fees payable to administrator. (a) The civil fees payable to the administrator for services are the same in amount as the fees then payable to the District Court of Hennepin County for like services. Library and filing fees are not required of the defendant in an eviction action. The fees payable to the administrator for all other services of the administrator or the court shall be fixed by rules promulgated by a majority of the judges.

(b) Fees are payable to the administrator in advance.

(c) Judgments will be entered only upon written application.

(d) The following fees shall be taxed for all charges filed in court where applicable: (a) The state of Minnesota and any governmental subdivision within the jurisdictional area of any district court herein established may present cases for hearing before said district court; (b) In the event the court takes jurisdiction of a prosecution for the violation of a statute or ordinance by the state or a governmental subdivision other than a city or town in Hennepin County, all fines, penalties, and forfeitures collected shall be paid over to the treasurer of the governmental subdivision which submitted charges for prosecution under ordinance violation and to the county treasurer in all other charges except where a different disposition is provided by law, in which case, payment shall be made to the public official entitled thereto. The following fees shall be taxed to the county or to the state or governmental subdivision which would be entitled to payment of the fines, forfeiture or penalties in any case, and shall be paid to the court administrator for disposing of the matter:

(1) For each charge where the defendant is brought into court and pleads guilty and is sentenced, or the matter is otherwise disposed of without trial .......... $5.

(2) In arraignments where the defendant waives a preliminary examination .......... $10.

(3) For all other charges where the defendant stands trial or has a preliminary examination by the court .......... $15.

(e) This paragraph applies to the distribution of fines paid by defendants without a court appearance in response to a citation. On or before the tenth day after the last day of the month in which the money was collected, the county treasurer shall pay 80 percent of the fines to the treasurer of the municipality or subdivision within the county where the violation was committed. The remainder of the fines shall be credited to the general revenue fund of the county.

Subd. 11a. Governmental units; fee exclusions. Any provision of law relating to the Municipal Court of Hennepin County to the contrary notwithstanding, no fees shall be charged by the court administrator of said Municipal Court to any governmental unit of the state of Minnesota or any agency thereof, located in whole or in part within the county of Hennepin when said governmental unit or any agency thereof transacts any business in, or they are a party to any action or proceeding in, the Hennepin county municipal court.

Subd. 11b. Criminal fees. Notwithstanding the provisions of subdivision 11a, beginning June 1, 1977, all criminal fees shall be collected in Hennepin County Municipal Court pursuant to subdivision 11.

Subd. 12. Repealed, 1965 c 845 s 4

Subd. 12a. Salaries. (a) The annual salary of the court administrator is $11,000 per year.

(b) The classifications and annual salaries of the deputy court administrators are:

(1) Chief deputy court administrator, $9,000.

(2) Assistant chief deputy court administrators, Grade II, $8,500.

(3) Assistant chief deputy court administrators, Grade I, $8,000.

(4) Deputy court administrators, from $4,800 to $7,800.

(c) Stenographers, from $3,600 to $4,400 annually.

(d) All of the foregoing salaries are payable out of the treasury of the county of Hennepin in semimonthly installments.

(e) Each deputy court administrator shall serve in the deputy court administrator's classification for one year at the minimum salary for that classification, and the deputy court administrator's salary shall be increased at the end of each year's service by $300 until such salaries reach the maximum salaries for such classification. Laws 1965, chapter 845, shall not be construed to reduce the present salary of any deputy court administrator. Deputy court administrators returning from active service in the armed forces of the United States shall receive automatic salary increases in the same fashion as though the time spent in said active service had been spent as a deputy court administrator.

Subd. 13. Destruction of records. (a) Upon order of all the judges the court administrator may destroy or dispose of all of the following types of files and records of the court which are more than ten years old:

(1) garnishment files, uncontested,

(2) motion calendars, special term,

(3) unlawful detainer calendars, special term,

(4) garnishment calendars, special term,

(5) general term calendars,

(6) court reporters note books,

(7) receipt books for prisoners,

(8) old receipt books for probation department,

(9) criminal and ordinance violations files,

(10) cash books,

(11) depositions,

(12) traffic tags.

(b) Upon order of all the judges and upon ten days' written notice to the president of the Hennepin County Historical Society, the court administrator may destroy or dispose of all files of civil or garnishment actions and actions of forcible entry, unlawful detainer, or eviction which were commenced more than 20 years prior to the judges' order and in which no proceedings have occurred within ten years prior to the judges' order.

Subd. 14. Revenues to general fund. In a judicial district under section 480.181, subdivision 1, paragraph (b), the county's share of all fines, forfeitures, fees, and statutory court costs must be paid to the state treasurer for deposit in the state treasury and credited to the general fund.

HIST: 1955 c 215 s 3; 1963 c 877 s 8-17; 1965 c 845 s 1,2; 1965 c 858 s 5; 1967 c 250 s 1; 1967 c 772 s 1; Ex1971 c 9 s 1; 1973 c 123 art 5 s 7; 1977 c 321 s 1; 1979 c 318 s 2; 1983 c 177 s 14; 1986 c 444; 1Sp1986 c 3 art 1 s 82; 1987 c 190 s 1; 1998 c 367 art 8 s 7,25; 2000 c 270 s 1,2; 1Sp2001 c 5 art 5 s 18; 2003 c 2 art 2 s 8,9