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A Better Partnership
September 04, 2009

SCAO recommends cutting 14 trial court and 4 COA judgeships in Michigan

A proposal from the State Court Administrative Office (SCAO) recommends eliminating 14 state court judgeships and four judgeships from the Michigan Court of Appeals through attrition.' The SCAO conducts a biennial review of the judicial needs in Michigan state courts, based on a number of factors, including a caseload analysis, and determines where judgeships can be eliminated.' At the trial court level, the report recommends eliminating 4 or 5 circuit judgeships, one probate judgeship, and 9 or 10 district court judgeships.' The report also recommends adding one circuit court judgeship and converting one probate position to a circuit court position in Macomb County, thereby eliminating a total of 14 trial judge positions throughout the state.' The SCAO also recommends reducing the number of judges on the COA from 28 to 24.' The report claims that the savings to the State from these cuts would be approximately $2.2 million, with additional savings at the local level.' The Associated Press reports that recommendations to reduce the number of judges have been made in the past, but the idea usually does not garner political support.' The SCAO Judicial Resources Recommendations report can be found here.

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