Criminal Cases Would Be Less Affected by S.F. Court Layoffs

California's oft-discussed governmental dysfunction is starting to take its toll. Public access to our state's natural resources is already on the chopping block; on Friday, more ominous news arrived about public access to justice. In light of the budget approved last week by the state Legislature, the San Francisco Superior Court system is planning to lay off 41 percent of its workforce, and close 25 of its 63 courtrooms.

Cuts to state funding for courts were promptly criticized by San Francisco Superior Court Presiding Judge Katherine Feinstein. “We are not an emergency room that can turn away patients because we are at capacity,” Feinstein said in a statement. “People want an orderly resolution to their disputes. If they can't achieve that outcome, then we will see more disorderly resolutions.”

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