Transparency

Jay Hamilton-Roth, 2016-17 Foreperson, Marin County Civil Grand Jury
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Overview

  • The Civil Grand Jury is Marin County’s only independent watchdog of government agencies and services.
  • Composed of 19 citizen volunteers, it investigates and monitors the performance of county, city, and local governing entities and recommends ways to increase their efficiency and effectiveness.
  • It has the power to enter accusations against government wrongdoers.
  • Empowered by the judicial system, the Civil Grand Jury is independent of administrators, politicians, and legislators.

Budget

  • The Grand Jury’s budgets are contained in the annual budgets of the County of Marin (County Counsel office).

Meetings

  • Grand Jurors attend weekly investigative committees and plenary meetings.
  • Since each Grand Juror is sworn to secrecy (“I shall not disclose to anyone information or evidence brought to my attention in the course of such investigation, nor shall I disclose discussions among grand jurors or the manner in which any grand juror has voted.”), there are no published meeting minutes nor agendas.

Elected & Appointed Officials

  • The foreperson of the Grand Jury is selected by the Superior Court.
  • Members of the Grand Jury are chosen through a formal selection process that includes: an application, a background check, and interviews.
  • Since the Grand Jury’s work is done in secret, the names of the jurors are not published until after their term is complete (June 30).
  • Jurors are paid $20/day for each day they attend a committee meeting and are reimbursed for mileage. Additional expenses (for materials) are decided on an as-needed basis.

Administrative Officials

  • The Aide to the Grand Jury is Patti Church.
  • Additional staff are available to the Grand Jury on an as-needed basis (County Counsel, District Attorney, Superior Court Judge, etc.).

Audits

  • The Grand Jury’s audits are contained in the annual audits of the County of Marin (County Counsel office).

Contracts

  • The Grand Jury has no approved vendor contracts for over $25,000.
  • Since there are no requests for proposals nor bidding opportunities, there are no instructions for how to submit a bid or proposal.

Public Records

  • Since the Grand Jury is required to operate in secrecy, the public cannot request any Grand Jury records.

Revenue Sources

  • The Grand Jury does not receive any fees for services, bonds, taxes, nor grants.