SALT LAKE CITY -- The ballot in your mailbox or at your polling place will ask you whether state and local judges should keep their jobs.
Judicial retention has been a part of Utah ballots for decades, and for decades a large percentage of voters have left the section blank, not wanting to pass judgement without information.
The website of the Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission, created in 2008, provides snapshot reviews of every judge, along with in depth evaluations.
Jennifer Yim, Executive Director of JPEC, says it's crucial for voters to play their role in the process.
"Voters are the only people who can decide whether or not a judge on their ballot gets to serve another term in office. Another six years for most judges in the state. That`s a really big responsibility," Yim said in an interview on Fox 13 Live at Four.
Judges.utah.com allows you to search for all of the judges in your part of the state, or to search for individual judges by name. Every judge gets a recommendation from the bipartisan members of the Commission, along with results of a survey of lawyers, jurors and court staff, and evaluations written by volunteer courtroom observers.
"People can look at as much or as little as they want," Yim said. "They can find out exact questions that we ask out about the judges' performance and they can make up their own minds."
Every judge gets a positive recommendation this year, but some of the judges have much lower ratings than others.
Yim says judges can see the evaluations early, and sometimes they decide to retire rather than face a retention vote with a negative recommendation.