Scales of Justice

Southern California — this just in
January 10, 2013 | 2:17 pm

California courts will continue to face closures and reduced hours in the coming year under Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposed budget, California’s chief justice said Thursday.

In a telephone conference with reporters, Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye said Brown’s proposed spending plan fails to restore hundreds of millions of dollars in cuts that are forcing court closures in Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Fresno counties.

“Nothing about this court budget fixes or ameliorates” the loss of service to the public, Cantil-Sakauye said.

The state’s top jurist said she was relieved that the proposed budget did not call for further cuts for trial court operations but noted the proposal “has an incredibly negative long-term impact” on the judicial branch’s ability to replace dilapidated and potentially unsafe courthouses around the state.

“This budget doesn’t answer our problems and our challenges,” she said. She said she and other court leaders would work to restore court funding.

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