Report: 57 more judges needed locally to deal with workload

Posted Dec. 12, 2014 @ 8:37 pm
Updated Dec 12, 2014 at 8:41 PM

The San Bernardino County court system currently maintains 86 judges, but the county’s caseloads justify it having 143, according to the 2014 Judicial Workload Assessment presented this week in San Francisco to the state Judicial Council.

The report underscores what many may already know: The county here is the most underserved judicial system in California.

“We’re redlining it,” Presiding Judge Marsha Slough said last week, comparing the system to a ship that is barely afloat.

An updated Judicial Council assessment is released every two years. The most recent report indicates that the judicial need here is “so acute,” the county occupies three of the top seven priority rankings — including No. 1 — for order of receiving new judgeships among all 58 counties in the state.

Riverside County, which occupies the second, fourth and eighth priority spots, is the second-most underserved in the state, according to the report. It needs 51.4 more judgeships.

Last December, the Judicial Council announced the county would receive nine new judges as part of a second wave of 50 judgeships allocated throughout the state by previous legislation.

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