Supreme Court Approves Fiscal Year 2014 Budget, All Clerk of Court Offices to be Open Full Time Print
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Written by Iowa Judical Branch   
Tuesday, 02 July 2013 09:38

Des Moines, June 27, 2013 —The Iowa Supreme Court approved a 2013-2014 Judicial Branch budget that will ensure that all Iowans will soon have full-time access to the state's 100 clerk of court offices. The $167.7 million budget, a 3.5% increase over the current fiscal year's budget, includes additional resources to serve Iowa's troubled youth and their families and more support for judges and magistrates.

"For the past two years the supreme court has traveled to communities throughout the state to hear oral arguments and meet with Iowans," Chief Justice Mark Cady said. "One message we heard repeatedly is that people expect access to justice, timely resolutions of legal disputes, and help for the children in their communities who are either in a dangerous family condition or in trouble with the law or both. With the appropriation approved by the legislature and signed by the governor this year, we can take the next step in reaching our goal of being the best, most advanced, and the most responsive court system in the nation."

Currently, all clerk of court offices in the state are closed to the public on Tuesday and Thursday afternoon from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. and 21 offices are closed for additional hours during the work day. In this budget, the supreme court authorized more than 40 additional positions for the state's clerk of court offices so that all the offices will be open to the public from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. In northwest Iowa, 29 offices will open July 15, 2013, while the remaining clerk offices and the clerk of appellate court office will be open full time on September 3, 2013. Some clerk's offices may be closed over the lunch hour in some smaller counties and some offices may temporarily close in order to cover special circumstances such as staff training or unexpected staff shortages.

The addition of 13 juvenile court officers will help the court meet its goal of all juvenile court officers meeting face to face with young offenders entering the court system. Juvenile court officers work with juvenile court judges to identify the underlying problems a child may be experiencing and then help match the needs of the child with the services available in the community.

All court users should notice fewer postponements of court dates due to the unavailability of a court reporter. This year's budget includes the addition of 13 court reporter positions. The budget also includes four new information technology positions to help with the implementation of electronic filing in the state. The Electronic Document Management System (EDMS) is implemented in about half the state and is expected to be fully implemented statewide by 2015.

"The future of the Iowa Judicial Branch is bright as we move into a new fiscal year," State Court Administrator David Boyd said. "The legislature and governor have provided us with the resources we need to focus on delivering accessible, timely and high quality justice."

The clerk of court offices to open full-time on July 15, 2013 are: Boone, Buena Vista , Calhoun, Carroll, Cherokee, Clay, Crawford, Dickinson, Emmet, Greene, Hamilton, Hardin, Humboldt, Ida, Kossuth , Lyon, Marshall, Monona, O'Brien, Osceola, Palo Alto, Plymouth, Pocahontas, Sac, Sioux, Story, Webster, Woodbury, and Wright.

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