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Office of Program Policy Analysis and Government Accountability

Review of the Efficiency of the Two-Tiered Trial Court System and the Process for Certifying Judges, Report No. 97-36, January 1998
Full report in PDF format

  • The process used to establish the need for additional judges does not accurately identify where and when they are needed. In 1996-97, the State Courts expended over $128 million for salaries and benefits of trial court judges and their judicial assistants.
  • Using a weighted caseload system could improve the determination of judicial workload and the need for additional judicial resources such as judges and hearing officers.
  • Constitutional provisions limit the efficient assignment of county judges. In 35 counties where there are single judges, it would only require 12 county judges to handle the total number of cases filed in 1996. The cost of this "excess" county judicial capacity amounted to $3.8 million.
  • Amending the Constitution to allow assignment of county judges as needed to circuit courts would be a better option to improve court efficiency than implementing a unified trial court system.

Which Government Program Summaries contain related information?

Supreme Court
Circuit Courts
County Courts
District Courts of Appeal
State Court System

What other OPPAGA-related materials are available?

  • Report No. 99-38 Information Brief: Courts Improve Caseload System; Need to Address Supplemental Resources, published in March 2000.
  • Report No. 97-67 Information Brief on Weighted Caseload Methods of Assessing Judicial Workload and Certifying the Need for Additional Judges, published in March 1998.

Copies of this report in print or alternate accessible format may be obtained by telephone (850/488-0021), by FAX (850/487-9213), in person, or by mail (OPPAGA Report Production, Claude Pepper Building, Room 312, 111 W. Madison St., Tallahassee, FL 32399-1475).
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