November 21, 2006

Changes to Town Courts

It's not specific to Dryden, but will definitely affect Dryden - changes to the ways Town and Village courts operate: (Registration required for link)

The plan, announced here by the state’s chief judge, Judith S. Kaye, included some measures that critics of the courts have been recommending for years. Among them is a plan to require that the local courts - known as justice courts - begin keeping a word-for-word record of their proceedings, as every other court in the state does...

The judiciary's plan also outlined steps to increase training for the justices, to overhaul their testing, and to provide the courts with computers, which many now lack. The officials said they would begin a new program to monitor compliance with constitutional guarantees of the right to legal counsel, to require annual audits of each justice court’s books, and to increase the court system’s supervision of the courts....

The judiciary plan would not, for example, require that justices in the town and village local courts be lawyers, as they must be in every other court in New York.

Neither of Dryden's Town Justices (the Town and Village share two) is a lawyer. Town Justice Christopher Clausen is up for re-election in 2007, while Town Justice Joseph Valentinelli is up for re-election in 2008. They both seem to handle a lot of cases. I also wonder what effect this might have on the Town's budget for the courts.

Posted by simon at November 21, 2006 5:04 PM in
Note on photos