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Two proposals focused on the juvenile justice system in North Dakota have hit their next stages.

The state Senate on Wednesday approved a resolution to study the state's juvenile justice system in the 2019-20 interim.

And by an 81-9 vote, the House passed Senate Bill 2313, which would establish a children's cabinet and a six-year commission on juvenile justice in North Dakota. The bill now goes back to the Senate for concurrence on amendments.

House Speaker Lawrence Klemin, R-Bismarck, brought the resolution, seeing more to do for the juvenile justice system, given the age of the Uniform Juvenile Court Act, which North Dakota adopted in 1969.

A similar 2017-18 interim study brought one bill on juvenile justice reform — to raise North Dakota's age of criminal responsibility from 7 to 10.

Gov. Doug Burgum has signed that bill into law, which takes effect Aug. 1.

Both chambers approved Klemin's resolution, sending it Legislative Management, a committee of House and Senate lawmakers who will assign various studies to interim committees after the 2019 legislative session adjourns, likely in late April.

"All that structure yet, we don't know what that's going to be," Klemin said of his proposed study, which isn't mandatory.

He also said he'd like juvenile justice professionals to be involved in a study, which the Council of State Governments may assist. 

Klemin also said he wants to see what coordination his proposed study may have with the children's cabinet and commission of SB2313.

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Reach Jack Dura at 701-223-8482 or jack.dura@bismarcktribune.com.

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