A total of 56 courtrooms will go dark by June 30 and 350 courtroom workers will be laid off as part of a $30 million budget slashing - the biggest cutback in history. "These extraordinary actions cut into the core work of the courts," said presiding Judge Lee Smalley Edmon. "With risks of more reductions on the horizon, we are already rationing justice." From press release:
The courtrooms being impacted include 24 civil, 24 criminal, 3 family, 1 probate, and 4 juvenile delinquency courts. The caseloads of those courtrooms are being distributed among the remaining courtrooms. Judicial officers whose courtrooms are impacted will be reassigned to fill vacancies, to share staff or to handle settlement conferences to resolve cases without trials. Second, on May 15, 2012, the Los Angeles Superior Court will no longer provide court reporters for civil trials. In addition, after June 18, 2012, court reporters will be available for civil law-and-motion matters on a limited basis. (No changes are being made to the provision of court reporters in criminal, family, probate, delinquency or dependency matters.)
AP's Linda Deutsch reports that among the courtrooms being closed will be that of Superior Court Judge Lance Ito. He'll be reassigned to fill in on cases for which no judge is available. Stray thought: What happens to jury pools?