March 12, 2013
As we mentioned here, Chief Justice Cantil-Sakauye yesterday delivered her annual State of the Judiciary address to the Legislature, in which she decried the serious underfunding of California’s courts during the last several years of statewide budget cuts. The speech has garnered a great deal of press coverage, including this piece by Maura Dolan in the Los Angeles Times, this article from the Sacramento Bee, and this informative piece from Judy Lin of the Associated Press. This article from the Courthouse News Service focuses on the status of the Chief’s efforts to increase the efficiency of the judicial branch.
We noted in our previous post that there is no sign of any immediate loosening of the legislative purse strings. But it is heartening that the AP has quoted Assemblyman Bob Wieckowski (D-Fremont), chairman of the Assembly Judiciary Committee, as saying after the speech that “he would like [to] restore $475 million [to the courts] by lowering the amount set aside for reserves in the governor’s proposed budget.” He added, “‘It’s a multiyear challenge, but I think the call has gone out to stop the tidewaters from coming in.’”