California Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye joined state lawmakers and other advocates for increased judicial funding today in Sacramento to unveil her three year blueprint for re-investing in the state’s courts.
The blueprint asks the state for more than one billion dollars in funding over the next three years. The Chief Justice says the state has been failing to provide a core governmental guarantee.
“When we can no longer guarantee timely access to justice, and we can no longer provide a litigant a courtroom in his or her community, of his or her peers, then we know that we are denying the protections of a democracy,” says Cantil-Sakauye.
She has commissioned a blue ribbon panel to study the effect of more than one billion in cuts to California’s courts over the last six years. Since then, she says, budget cuts have closed 51 court houses and 205 court rooms.
State Finance Director Michael Cohen says the Governor’s budget gives the courts $105 million this year. He says prior cuts are permanent.
California’s system of water rights is coming under scrutiny as the state’s drought gets worse. Today Governor Jerry Brown indicated there may be some changes coming to the century-old system.
Governor Jerry Brown has declined to say whether he supports a bill that would extend Medi-Cal to some undocumented immigrants in California.
California taxpayers will likely be contributing more money to the state’s retirement system.
Police body cameras have the potential to provide more information about law enforcement interactions with the public. And today a California Assembly committee considered when police should be allowed to review the video they've taken.
Take a tour of the California state Capitol - but not just any tour. This one includes a little history, some surprising details that are easy to miss, and a rare trip to the top of the Capitol dome.