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Saturday, 20th March 2010

Expanding Caseload Fuels Judiciary Request for Resources in 2011

Expanding Caseload Fuels Judiciary Request for Resources in 2011
Source: Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts

Submitting the smallest funding increase requested in more than 20 years, representatives of the federal Judiciary today asked a House subcommittee to adequately fund the courts in the coming year so they can cope with anticipated increases in case filings.

“Our workload is increasing, nearly across the board, and if Congress approves the President’s requests for the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Justice, and bankruptcy filings remain high, our workload will continue to grow,” Judge Julia Gibbons, chair of the Judicial Conference Budget Committee, told the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government.

As a result, Judge Gibbons said, the Judiciary is requesting a 6.8 percent funding increase for fiscal year 2011.

“In order to handle a growing workload and sustain a fair and expeditious delivery of justice, the federal courts must have the resources needed to do their work,” she said. “We do not have programs that we can cut in response to a budget shortfall.”

Judge Gibbons appeared with Administrative Office Director James C. Duff before the Subcommittee.

“The President’s budget increases spending on border and immigration enforcement efforts, particularly along the Southwest border, as well as spending for prosecuting financial fraud and drug offenses,” said Judge Gibbons. “This influx of crime fighting resources will result in more criminal cases in our district courts, more work for our probation and pretrial services officers, and increased caseload in our defender services program, which provides assigned counsel to eligible defendants.”

She noted that additional courts of appeals cases could be seen as the DOJ adds immigration judges and staff to clear the backlog of cases in the immigration courts.

+ Judge Julia S. Gibbons Testimony (PDF; 62 KB)
+ Director James C. Duff Testimony (PDF; 65 KB)


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