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The Scoop

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Verbatim: Indiana tax court finalists named

Statement issued Wednesday:

The Judicial Nominating Commission named three applicants as finalists for the upcoming Indiana Tax Court Judge vacancy. The following attorneys and judge were selected, Ms. Martha Wentworth of Greenwood, Hon. Karen Love of Lizton, and Mr. Joby Jerrells of Bloomington.

Fifteen individuals submitted applications for the position which will become available when Judge Thomas G. Fisher retires on January 1, 2011. One person withdrew his name from consideration. The applications submitted to the Commission are online and can be viewed by clicking on their name above. Because of the voluminous nature of the applications, the online information only includes the application itself. The press and public were invited to view applications with lengthy writing samples in person on Friday, September 24th.

According the Indiana Constitution and state statute the seven-member Judicial Nominating Commission conducts interviews for Judge Fisher’s successor. Lead by Chief Justice Shepard, the Commission held fourteen public interviews on September 27th and then deliberated in executive session. The Commission named the semi-finalists during a public vote that same day.

The Commission held interviews with the semi-finalists on October 27th at the State House. Those interviews were also open to the press and public. The Judicial Nominating Commission deliberated in executive session and named the three candidates in a public session. The three names will be submitted to Governor Mitch Daniels who will select Indiana's Tax Court Judge.

In August, Judge Thomas G. Fisher announced he would step down from the bench on January 1, 2011. He has been the first and only Tax Court Judge since the General Assembly established the Tax Court on July 1, 1986. The Tax Court has exclusive jurisdiction over any case that arises under the Indiana tax laws and that is an initial appeal of a final determination made by the Indiana Department of State Revenue or the Indiana Board of Tax Review. In addition, the Tax Court has jurisdiction over certain appeals from the Department of Local Government Finance.

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