The Circuit Court of the 21st Judicial Circuit of Kankakee County found the provision unconstitutional “after states attorneys in 65 Illinois counties challenged the new law.”
The Illinois Supreme Court temporarily suspended the Pretrial Fairness Act in the SAFE-T Act, which would eliminate cash bail.
“The emergency motion for supervisory order is allowed,” wrote the court. “In order to maintain consistent pretrial procedures throughout Illinois, the effective date of the Pretrial Fairness Act (Public Act 101-652 and Public Act 102-1104) is stayed during the pendency of the appeal in No. 129248 and until further order of this Court.”
Because, as the Illinois Supreme Court has determined, the administration of the justice system is an inherent power of the courts upon which the legislature may not infringe and the setting of bail falls within that administrative power, the appropriateness of bail rests with the authority of the court and may not be determined by legislative fiat. Therefore, the court finds that Public Acts 101- 652 and 102-1104 as they relate only to the pretrial release provisions do violate this separation of powers principle underlying our system of governance by depriving the courts of their inherent authority to administer and control their courtrooms and to set bail. Elrod, supra.
The Illinois Attorney General’s Office appealed the court’s decision directly to the Illinois Supreme Court.
Kane and Dupage county’s state’s attorneys asked the Illinois Supreme Court to delay the provision “amid confusion over how a divided state would work.”
The Illinois Supreme Court will hear an appeal from Attorney General Kwame Raoul but did not give a date:
Also on Friday, Raoul appealed Cunnington’s decision to the Supreme Court. He said some court motions asked for his office to be prohibited from enforcing any provision of the SAFE-T Act — and not just the pretrial ones.
“Many of these provisions have been in effect for more than a year; however, my office received less than one hour’s notice of hearings in some counties and no notice at all in others,” he said in the statement. “Throughout the day, we continued to learn of plaintiffs having obtained (temporary restraining orders) without giving our office notice or providing copies of the complaints or TRO motions.”
“To say that this is an abuse of the judicial process is an understatement,” Raoul said.
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