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Nominees for new judgeship named
Six local lawyers nominated for state court bench
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The committee that will provide Gov. Sonny Perdue with a short list of candidates for Hall County’s new state court judgeship received six nominations by the close of the submission deadline.

According to an e-mail release from the state Judicial Nominating Commission, the nominees are, in alphabetical order, Benjamin Bagwell, Larry Baldwin, William M. Brownwell Jr., Tom Csider, Ann Schuler and William Sykes.

Officials with the commission were not available for comment after business hours Thursday.

The new county-funded judgeship was created by an act of the General Assembly this year after a study found that current state court judges Charles Wynne and B.E. Roberts had a caseload equivalent to 3.7 judges.

Wynne and Roberts have both qualified to run for re-election this year. Qualifying for state and superior court judges races closes at the end of the day today.

The third judgeship, which pays a salary of $157,000, will initially be appointed by the governor. The new judge would then stand for re-election in 2010.

Baldwin, Hall County’s solicitor-general, earlier this month announced his intention to seek an interview with the governor for the job.

The Judicial Nominating Commission sent a letter to the local bar seeking nominations by Tuesday. Candidates could nominate themselves.

Some nominees may choose not to apply for the job. One attorney, Walter J. Rucker, withdrew his name from consideration, according to the commission.

The commission will hold interviews with the candidates on July 21 at the State Bar office in Atlanta.

State court judges hear misdemeanor criminal cases and civil actions that do not have exclusive jurisdiction in superior court.