Panel passes bill on judges, ponders hate crimes

Posted: Thursday, February 17, 2011

JUNEAU — The Senate Judiciary Committee has approved a bill to hire more judges.

The bill, requested by Alaska’s Supreme Court and heading to the Senate Finance Committee for further consideration, would provide for two more Superior Court judges to handle civil cases in Anchorage.

The committee also considered a bill ratifying a compact in favor of electing the president by popular vote, along with a proposal by Gov. Sean Parnell that would expand the definition of stalking and provide new protections to minors.

The panel also considered legislation that would expand the definition of hate crimes to include offenses based on a person’s gender identity or sexual orientation.

That and the two other bills were held for further consideration.

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