Becoming a Grand Juror
2020-2021 San Joaquin County Civil Grand Jury
The San Joaquin County Civil Grand Jury’s duty is to address citizens’ concerns regarding the operation of local government entities.
The Civil Grand Jury is comprised of 19 citizens who are impaneled annually for a one-year term. The Grand Jury has a separate and different function than that of a trial jury and does not hear cases in a courtroom. Instead, Grand Jurors examine and investigate local governmental activities within San Joaquin County.
The responsibilities of the Civil Grand Jury encompass the examination of all aspects of County government, including school and special districts, to ensure that the County is being governed lawfully, efficiently, and that public monies are being handled appropriately. The Grand Jury may conduct investigations of public agencies and the administration and affairs of any city within the County.
The Grand Jury is authorized by law to:
- Inquire into the condition and management of public prisons within the County;
- Investigate and report on the operations, accounts and records of city and County offices, departments and their functions;
- Inquire into the allegations of willful or corrupt misconduct of public officials;
- Investigate into the activities of all school and special assessment districts within the County;
- Submit a final report of its findings and recommendations to the Presiding Judge of the Superior Court.
The Presiding Judge of the Superior Court empanels 19 Grand Jurors to serve for one year, fulfilling the duties as outlined under state law. The Judge appoints a foreperson who presides over the Grand Jury. The Grand Jury elects other officers and organizes itself. The jurors meet in a weekly general session. Smaller investigative committees meet throughout the week.
In addition, Jurors meet with County and city officials, visit County detention facilities, and conduct independent reviews on matters of interest or concern. Each of the working committees report to the full Grand Jury. Conclusions are reached after study and thorough discussion of the issues and they may appear as part of the Grand Jury’s final report.
Grand Jury service is a volunteer position with modest monthly compensation for meetings and mileage. Members receive a wealth of experience and provide a vital service to their community. Desirable attributes include:
- Good health
- An open mind
- Knowledge of and interest in local government and community affairs
- Skill in working productively with others in a group setting where respect and patience are essential
- Skill and experience in fact-finding, investigative techniques, and report writing
The benefits of being a grand juror are many, including:
- The satisfaction and pride of doing an important job.
- The experience of being a member of a respected panel.
- Being part of a body of people with the unique authority to see local government workings not available to most County citizens.
- Being given an opportunity to make a difference in your community.
To be considered for nomination to be a grand juror, you must meet the following legal requirements:
- Be a U.S. citizen;
- Be at least 18 years old;
- Be a resident of San Joaquin County for at least one year immediately prior to the beginning of your service;
- Possess intelligence, sound judgment and good character;
- Have sufficient knowledge of English language to communicate orally and in writing;
You cannot be considered:
- If you are serving as a trial juror in any court in California;
- If you have been convicted of malfeasance in office or any other high crime;
- If you are serving as an elected public officer.
For more information about the San Joaquin County Civil Grand Jury visit:
SAN JOAQUIN COUNTY CIVIL GRAND JURY
180 E. Weber Ave., Suite 1114
Stockton, CA 95202