Guest Column Viewpoint Letter

Our Santa Cruz County court will soon begin our process of interviewing and selecting our 2024-25 Civil Grand Jury, and we hope you will consider applying.

Serving on the grand jury is a tremendous opportunity to support our local community and to contribute to the betterment of our county government agencies—the agencies that we believe in and rely on to provide services to each of us.

The grand jury is an esteemed part of the judicial branch of the government, though it functions independently from the courts. It is an examining and investigative body, and it is charged with investigating and reporting on the operations of local governmental entities.

The goal of the grand jury is to improve the operations of local government through investigations and the issuance of written findings and recommendations based on those investigations, and each grand jury has wide latitude in deciding which topics and entities to review and investigate.

Our grand jury reviews the practices and operations of our local agencies, to ensure transparency, accountability, effective use of resources, success in delivery of goals, and alignment with government purposes. The grand jury’s investigations and analytical reports are a vital part of our democracy and our success as a community.

Each year, a new grand jury is selected from our local community, and the 2024-25 grand jury will begin July 1, 2024. Our county’s grand jury is composed of 19 volunteer members who serve for a one-year term, with an expected time contribution of approximately 20 hours each week, though this varies depending on each investigation and report.

Our most recent grand juries have been meeting and working together in person, as well as remotely, and have successfully used video conferencing and document-sharing programs; we expect this combination of in-person and remote work to continue.

We are looking for dedicated, open-minded, wise residents of our county who enjoy contributing to the improvement of our local community. Please consider applying. As the supervising judge of Santa Cruz County’s grand jury, I thank you for doing so. Your insight and experience are critical in the success of our local government.

Please also encourage others to apply, including your local friends, family and other community members who you believe could add valuable contributions.

For further information, email [email protected] with questions, or go to our local grand jury website for additional information and to review past reports:

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Judge, Santa Cruz County


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