LOS ANGELES — An unprecedented financial crisis afflicting the nation's largest court system is in the hands of the policy making California Judicial Council, with Los Angeles court officials awaiting its decision on their plea for an infusion of cash.
The Los Angeles court system has already closed 17 courtrooms and another 50 will be shut down come September unless something is done to find more money. The closures have disrupted everything from divorce and custody proceedings to traffic ticket disputes.
The judicial council scheduled a meeting Friday to deal with the request from presiding Superior Court Judge Charles W. McCoy Jr. to divert $47 million in funds from the courthouse construction budget to help stave off more courtroom closings and staff layoffs.
McCoy predicts chaos and a logjam of civil and family law cases if additional funds are not found.
He said the Los Angeles court's budgetary shortfall is $133 million which will be permanent each year unless there is an influx of funds from somewhere.
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