3-11-204. Training sessions for judges. (1) There must be two mandatory annual training sessions supervised by the supreme court for all elected and appointed city judges. One of the training sessions may be held in conjunction with the Montana magistrates' association convention. Actual and necessary travel expenses, as provided in 2-18-501 through 2-18-503, and the costs of registration and books and other materials must be paid to the elected or appointed judge for attending the sessions. Whenever the office of city judge is held by a justice of the peace, the costs imposed by this subsection are the joint responsibility of the county and the municipality, with the costs to be allocated and charged in proportion to the work done for each governmental entity. In all other cases, the costs must be paid by the city or town in which the judge holds or will hold court and must be charged against that city or town.
(2) Each city judge shall attend the training sessions. Failure to attend disqualifies the judge from office and creates a vacancy in the office. However, the supreme court may excuse a city judge from attendance because of illness, a death in the family, or any other good cause.