California Courts

Judicial Council meeting this week to discuss impact of court closures

A Friday afternoon press release (PDF) from the Administrative Office of the Courts announced that this Wednesday’s meeting of the Judicial Council will include a review of  the impact of the court closure policy instituted last September. From the agenda:

Based on survey responses from the Supreme Court, Courts of Appeal, 54 superior courts, and 275 justice system partners, the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) recommends continuing the one-day-per-month judicial branch closures through June 2010, as directed at the July 29, 2009, Judicial Council meeting. The closures provide a viable method in the short term to absorb the significant budget reductions imposed on the branch, although they are far from a perfect tool and have unquestionably affected court operations and the smooth and effective delivery of justice. The AOC further recommends that the council reaffirm its commitment to keep courts open and accessible to the public and to advocate for sufficient resources to avoid the need for court closures in fiscal year 2010–2011 and direct the Administrative Director of the Courts, in consultation with branch leaders to develop recommendations and guidelines for limited closures for 2010– 2011 should sufficient resources not be provided.

The agenda references this 28-page report (PDF) from the AOC. The meeting will be audiocast live at this link.