SAN FRANCISCO—Building upon the recently completed work by the Trial Court Funding Workgroup and a budget subcommittee that helped create a new funding allocation method for the judicial branch, Chief Justice Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye announced today that the Judicial Council will be soliciting nominations for the newly established Trial Court Budget Advisory Committee.
“In the last three years of self-assessment, the judicial branch has launched a number of initiatives related to reorganization, restructuring, and the creation of new funding models,” said the Chief Justice. “It’s important to bring these efforts to completion by making sure we have the right leaders in the right places. We have justices, judges, court administrators, and lawyers who have developed valuable expertise in the last few years and we don’t want to lose that expertise. Justice Harry Hull did a masterful job as co-chair of the Trial Court Funding Workgroup. And the work of presiding judges and court administrators on the Trial Court Budget Working Group and a subcommittee chaired by Sacramento Presiding Judge Laurie Earl was a game changer. We need to keep the momentum going.”
The Judicial Council is also considering extending two advisory positions to the council set to expire in September. If approved, the Chief Justice plans to make selections to those seats by next month. She also expects to make appointments to upcoming open seats on the council as well as those on the new Trial Court Budget Advisory Committee.
“When making appointments to the council and its advisory committees,” she said, “I look for diversity of viewpoints, experience, and background. At the same time, it’s important that members of the council and its committees have a statewide perspective while serving the public’s interest and improving access to justice for all Californians.”
Members of the Trial Court Budget Advisory Committee will be making funding recommendations to the council for the coming fiscal year. As part of its restructuring, the council decided at its business meeting on April 25 that the Trial Court Budget Advisory Committee would become a standing council advisory committee. It answers to the Judicial Council, and its members are appointed by the Chief Justice.
The California Constitution limits the number of voting members on the council to 21. According to the state Constitution, the Chief Justice chairs the Judicial Council, and appoints one other Supreme Court justice, three justices from the courts of appeal, 10 trial court judges, two nonvoting court administrators “and any other nonvoting members as determined by the voting membership of the council.” Members serve three years and new council members begin serving in September. The State Bar’s governing body appoints four members and the state Senate and Assembly each appoint one member. The council currently has 11 advisory members.