Many courts in smaller counties throughout the state are starting to suffer
from the same financial problems as Mono County and some other area jurisdictions.
Officials in Stanislaus County, which is just a short drive up Interstate
5 past Los Banos, looked forward to moving into a brand-new $267 million
facility to replace the cramped building that is there now. But that project is
on hold, because the state doesn’t have the money. Siskiyou County, which
is on the Oregon border, has similar issues. There are security concerns
(in 2000, a sex crimes defendant shot the alleged victim and then himself)
and safety concerns (the building’s one elevator is out of service
and an active volcano is only thirty miles away). But, the $66 million
facelift is on hold, because there is no money.
Statewide, seventeen counties have seriously inadequate facilities that
cannot be renovated or replaced due to lack of funds.
Reduced Services and Traffic Tickets
Last summer, an utterly destitute Mono County was prepared to shut its
doors for about a month until the state came through with an emergency
loan at the eleventh hour. Many other courthouses in Central California
have reduced their hours and/or laid off court staff. For example, the
Bishop courthouse is only open four and a half days a week and there is not enough staff
to answer the phones in the morning.
The state once had almost $2 billion set aside for courthouse construction
and related uses, but over time, the state has raided that fund and it
has dwindled down to nothing. The ongoing ticket
amnesty does not help, because after they pay staff overtime and other expenses
to handle the increased volume, they barely break even.
All this means that overworked prosecutors have very little time to spend
on individual cases, so in many cases, they are willing to make a fast
deal, close the file, and move on to the next one. In other words, it’s
a driver-friendly market.
Getting Legal Help
The aggressive lawyers at Bigger & Harman, APC, are committed to giving
individuals a voice when dealing with speeding and traffic tickets. Call
today at 661-859-1177 or email
email@example.com to receive the personal professional attention you deserve. En español,
llame al 661-376-0214.