California chief justice seeks more court money

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Updated: 3/17/2014 8:21 pm

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California's chief justice says the state's court system needs more money if it is going to recover from years of budget cuts that have forced courthouses to close and court employees to take unpaid days off.

Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye (cann-TIHL' sock-uh-OO'eh) told a joint session of the Legislature on Monday that the courts "have a lot of catching up to do."

It is her third annual "state of the judiciary" address to lawmakers. She has been seeking to restore court funding since she was sworn in three years ago by former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Trial court funding peaked at $3.3 billion six years ago. The recession and subsequent state budget cuts forced some trial courts to reduce their hours, close courtrooms and furlough or lay off employees.

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