§716. Commissioner; duties; powers; contempt
A. The commissioner of the Fifteenth Judicial District Court shall perform such duties as are assigned by the chief judge of the district in accordance with rules which shall be prescribed by the elected judges of the court, not inconsistent herewith or with the constitution and laws of the state.
B.(1) The commissioner shall have all powers of a district judge not inconsistent with the constitution and laws of the state of Louisiana and the United States, including but not limited to the power to administer oaths and affirmations, take acknowledgments, affidavits, and depositions, sign orders, act in felony and misdemeanor charges, hear preliminary motions, accept pleas in misdemeanor cases including misdemeanor cases preliminary to trial on the merits, conduct trials of misdemeanor cases, fix bail, and sign and issue search and arrest warrants upon probable cause being shown and in accordance with Paragraph (2) of this Subsection.
(2) In felony cases, the commissioner shall not try and adjudicate preliminary hearings, motions for discovery, motions to suppress, motions to quash, and trials on the merits. The commissioner may be designated and assigned to hear and determine any felony pretrial matter pending before the court, not inconsistent with the provisions of this Paragraph. The commissioner shall not adjudicate felony cases.
(3) In misdemeanor cases, the commissioner may be designated to hear, determine, and adjudicate any matter pending before the court.
(4) In civil cases, the commissioner may be designated and assigned to conduct hearings, including evidentiary hearings, and trials, except motions for injunctive relief and temporary restraining orders. In furtherance of the above, civil trials and hearings by the commissioner shall be governed by the following rules:
(a) The commissioner may conduct any or all proceedings on any matter pending before the court and order the entry of judgment in any case where the parties consent to the matter being heard and adjudicated by the commissioner. Each judgment so entered shall be signed by a judge of the district. The clerk of court, at the time the action is filed, shall notify the parties of their right to consent to the exercise of such jurisdiction. The decision of the parties shall be communicated to the clerk. An aggrieved party may appeal a judgment of the commissioner rendered pursuant to the authority of this Subsection in the same manner as an appeal from any other judgment of a district court.
(b) If any party does not consent to the matter being heard and adjudicated by the commissioner, then the commissioner may be designated to conduct the trials and hearings and to submit to the judge of the appropriate division, proposed findings of fact and recommendations for the disposition thereof of any matter or motion pending before the court or any application for post trial relief made therein. In such cases, the commissioner shall file his proposed findings and recommendations with the court, and a copy shall forthwith be mailed, postage prepaid, to all parties or their counsel of record. Within ten days after transmittal of such copy, any party may traverse such findings or recommendations in writing in such manner as shall be specified by the rules of the district court. The judge of the appropriate division shall make a de novo determination of any findings or recommendations to which objection is made. The judge may accept, reject, or modify in whole or in part the findings or recommendations made by the commissioner and also may receive further evidence or recommit the matter to the commissioner with instructions.
C. The commissioner shall have the same powers as a judge to punish for contempt of court, as set forth in Code of Civil Procedure Articles 221 through 227.
D, E. REPEALED BY ACTS 1995, NO. 442, §2.
Acts 1984, No. 713, §1; Acts 1985, No. 278, §1; Acts 1995, No. 442, §§1, 2.