The Senate Appropriations Committee iced SB 377 and roughly 100 other bills that legislators deemed too expensive to pursue this year. Actually, SB 377 wouldn’t have appropriated any money for the new judgeships, it would’ve just created the positions with the hope that the Legislature fund them some time in the future. But committee Chairwoman Christine Kehoe, D-San Diego, said bills creating new programs or expanding old ones were largely a no-go in this year of mammoth deficits.
“We’re all sacrificing our priorities,” Kehoe said.
A flock of sacrificial lambs, after the jump.
In the Assembly, the Appropriations Committee also tabled AB 1461, a bill that would have required all court reporting companies to comply with the same state regulations, whether they’re licensed or not. Currently, reporters licensed by the Court Reporters Board must abide by limits on gift-giving, limits they say give an advantage to unlicensed reporting corporations that can woo legal firm clients with pricey tickets, trips and other gifts.
AB 590 would set up a pilot project in at least one court to offer lawyers to indigent parties in civil cases involving “basic human needs.” The program would be paid for by a $10 increase on certain legal fees.
AB 663 is the latest attempt by Assemblyman Dave Jones, D-Sacramento, to expand interpreting services to civil courts. A new fee on telephonic appearances would finance a pilot program in five counties.
— Cheryl Miller
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