Apply to Join the Grand Jury
Apply to join the civil grand jury
- Applications for the 2013-2014 Civil Grand Jury are now being accepted.
- The Applications deadline is April 15, 2013.
- To apply, please print this application and submit via mail to: Grand Jury Office, 400 McAllister Street, Room 008, San Francisco, CA 94102-4514.
What's The civil grand jury
- California's constitution mandates that each county annually impanel a "watchdog" grand jury with the duty to investigate the operations of the city and county's officers, departments and agencies.
- San Francisco's civil grand jury consists of 19 members randomly drawn for a pool of applicants, who serve for one year from July through June.
- California state law requires that all 58 counties impanel a Grand Jury to serve during each fiscal year (Penal Code section 905, California Constitution, Article I, Section 23). In San Francisco, the Presiding Judge of the Superior Court impanels two grand juries. The Indictment Grand Jury has sole and exclusive jurisdiction to return criminal indictments.
How Does it Work?
- Each jury determines which issues related to the governance of San Francisco City & County it wishes to investigate.
- Juries are free to choose their methodology. In recent years the usual practice has been to divide into committees, which then select the county's officers, departments or agencies they will investigate.
- State law authorizes civil grand juries, as representatives of the local citizenry, to review and evaluate the effectiveness and cost/benefit of procedures, methods and systems.
- During their investigations, jurors may inspect and audit books, records and financial expenditures; interview civil servants and others who may have pertinent information; inspect government facilities, and then issue reports with findings and recommendations.
- After the Presiding Judge reviews these reports to make certain they meet legal requirements, they are sent to the appropriate departments heads, who are required by law to respond. When they agree, they must specify how and when they will implement the recommended changes; if they disagree, they must explain their reasons. The jury then releases the reports to the public via the media and the Board of Supervisors, which generally holds public hearings on each year's reports.
when does the grand jury meet?
- The jury typically meets weekly on Monday evenings from 5:30 to 7:30. Meetings take place at the Civic Center Courthouse located at 400 McAllister St., San Francisco.
- Most committee work takes place during regular working hours.
who is eligible?
- Grand Jury eligibility includes: US citizenship, minimum age 18, residency in the City & County for at least one year, ordinary intelligence, good character and a working knowledge of English. (Persons are ineligible to serve if they have been discharged from the grand jury within one year, are currently serving on a trial jury, are elected public officials, or have been convicted of a felony.)
- Jurors must by law disclose all investments and business positions in and/or income from any entity that has conducted business within the City & County in the previous two years, as well as income from all employees of the City and County and all interests in real property. These become matters of public record.