Utah Supreme Court Chief Justice Christine Durham warned lawmakers budget cuts already imposed on the courts are hurting the system's ability to deliver justice for Utahns. Additional cuts will force the justice system to place court employees on a five week furlough between now and the end of the fiscal year and take a 20% pay cut.
According to Chief Justice Durham "Civil-case filings statewide were up 22 percent, the first time in the history of the Utah courts that we have ever seen anything in double-digit increases; criminal filings were also up." Driving the increases is an incredible 101% increase in foreclosures and dramatic increases in contract disputes and debt collections.
Follow the links below to read or watch one of the many stories on the impact of the budget crisis on the court system:
Deseret Morning News - January 26, 2009
Utah's 1,000 court employees may be forced to take unpaid leave
Salt Lake Tribune - January 27, 2009
Chief justice: Courts must stay in session, don't furlough employees
KSL Television - January 26, 2007
Chief justice warns of consequences if court budget is cut