Justice of the Peace Nancy Discher retires from office; Board of Supervisors to appoint replacement to serve remaining term through Dec. 31, 2022
The Pinal County Board of Supervisors last week accepted the resignation of Nancy Discher, Justice of the Peace over Precinct 5, and set out the process to appoint a replacement to see out her remaining term.
Judge Discher, who has served the Copper Corridor Justice Court, representing much of eastern Pinal County since January 2015, retired from office effective Jan. 20, 2021.
Judge Discher was a dedicated servant to the people of Precinct 5 over the past six years, implementing a redistricting plan that combined three JP courts into the one Copper Corridor Justice Court.
Judge Shaun Babeu, from Precinct 1’s Pioneer Justice Court, paid tribute to Nancy Discher, “Judge Discher has been a friend and colleague for the past six years serving as Justice of the Peace for the Copper Corridor Justice Court. Judge Discher is a dedicated public servant who cared about every individual that came into her courthouse and operated her court in an efficient and effective manner. We wish her well in her well-deserved retirement.”
Precinct 5 sits within Supervisor Districts 1 and 4. District 1 Supervisor Kevin Cavanaugh commented, “Pinal County has been blessed to have a person of such incredible talent and integrity as Nancy Discher serving as a Justice. I am sad to see her go and am committed to appointing a person in JP 5 who measures up to her high ideals.”
The Pinal County Board of Supervisors are constrained by law on how to select her replacement.
The law that covers vacancies in county offices makes a distinction between whether the vacancy occurs within the first two years of an official’s term or afterward. In the case of a mid-term vacancy that occurs after the completion of the first two years of service, Arizona Revised Statute 16-230.A.2 is invoked. This states:
If a county office becomes vacant, the Board of Supervisors shall appoint a person of the same political party as the person vacating the office to fill the portion of the term until the next regular general election. If the person vacating the office changed political party affiliations after taking office, the person who is appointed to fill the vacancy shall be of the same political party that the vacating officeholder was when the vacating officeholder was elected or appointed to that office.
Judge Discher was elected as a Republican, so the Pinal County Board of Supervisors is only accepting applications from registered Republicans for the Justice of the Peace position, Precinct 5, Copper Corridor Justice Court.
To be eligible for appointment as Justice of the Peace, Arizona law specifies that each potential candidate meets the following criteria:
• Must be a legal Arizona resident living within the Precinct 5, Copper Corridor Justice Court
• Must be registered to vote
• Must be able to read and write the English language
• Must be at least 18 years of age
Interested individuals should take note of the application criteria and deadlines below:
Letters of Interest and Résumés by 5 p.m. Friday, Feb. 26, 2021. There is no formal application to submit, and any combination of a letter of interest with résumé and other documents outlining the applicant’s qualifications for office shall be emailed, mailed, or submitted in person to:
Natasha Kennedy, Clerk of the Board
Pinal County Board of Supervisors
Physical Address: 135 North Pinal Street, Florence, AZ 85132
Mailing Address: PO Box 827, Florence, AZ 85132
Candidates shall indicate their address, party affiliation, and contact information in their letter of interest.
Title 22 of the Arizona Revised Statutes provides more detail on the duties of a Justice of the Peace.