Wednesday, June 11, 2008

AOC: Court Facilities Standards Committee to review judicial center projects planned for Hancock, Monroe, Rowan, Russell and Whitley counties at June 23 meeting

For those who have raised concerns about the construction of Kentucky's Court Houses, here is your opportunity to attend a meeting and put in your two cents.

Court Facilities Standards Committee to review judicial center projects planned for Hancock, Monroe, Rowan, Russell and Whitley counties at June 23 meeting from AOC Press Release

Who: The Court Facilities Standards Committee is a 10-member body comprised of representatives from the Kentucky Executive, Judicial and Legislative branches of government and a county official appointed by the governor. The committee reviews design plans, cost estimates and financing proposals for new court facilities statewide. State Sen. Robert Stivers and state Rep. Kathy Stein co-chair the 10-member committee, which includes Chief Justice of Kentucky Joseph E. Lambert and Administrative Office of the Courts Director Jason Nemes.

The Court Facilities Standards Committee operates under the auspices of the AOC in Frankfort, which is the operational arm of the Kentucky Court of Justice. The AOC Department of Facilities oversees court facility construction, renovation and maintenance throughout the commonwealth.

What: The committee will be discussing new judicial center projects for Hancock, Monroe, Rowan, Russell and Whitley counties, which were among the 17 judicial center projects that were authorized by the 2006 General Assembly and will be funded by the 2008 General Assembly. The meeting is open to the public.

Original project plans:

Hancock County – 33,700-square-foot judicial center with an estimated total project cost of $11.7 million

Monroe County – 32,300-square-foot judicial center with an estimated total project cost of $11.2 million

Rowan County – 39,200-square-foot judicial center with an estimated total project cost of $13 million

Russell County – 33,700-square-foot judicial center with an estimated total project cost of $11.7 million

Whitley County – 57,300-square-foot judicial center with an estimated total project cost of $18.9 million

When: Monday, June 23, 10 a.m. EDT

Where: Administrative Office of the Courts, Building 12 conference room, 100 Millcreek Park, Frankfort

Contact: Jamie Ball, Public Information Specialist, Administrative Office of the Courts, 502-573-2350, jamieball@kycourts.net

Directions to the Administrative Office of the Courts
100 Millcreek Park, Frankfort, Kentucky
502-573-2350 or 800-928-2350 [below fold]

Continue reading "AOC: Court Facilities Standards Committee to review judicial center projects planned for Hancock, Monroe, Rowan, Russell and Whitley counties at June 23 meeting" »

Monday, June 09, 2008

AOC: Deputy Chief Justice to be guest speaker at Rowan County Drug Court graduation June 13

The public is invited to attend a Rowan County Drug Court graduation ceremony during which three participants will be recognized for completing the program.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

AOC: Governor Beshear Appoints District Judge for the 16th Judicial District, Division 4

Governor Beshear Appoints District Judge for the 16th Judicial District, Division 4

Governor Steve Beshear has appointed the Honorable Kathleen Susan Lape to the office of District Judge for the 16th Judicial District, Division 4.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

OP-ED FROM HERALD LEADER: "Courthouse plan wastes taxes, trust - Pike tale shows why Ky. never progresses"

Here is an editorial from the Lexington Herald Leader on May 18, 2008 which follows it recent news stories critical of some components of Kentucky Courthouse construction projects. The remainder of the story is below the "fold":

Courthouse plan wastes taxes, trust

Pike tale shows why Ky. never progresses

If the story of the new Pike County Courthouse was fiction, you would think the author was throwing in everything he had to make Kentucky look bad.

Fiction it's not.

For those who still scratch their heads about our persistent lame ratings in almost everything, this true story is a cautionary tale about how we got here and why we're not going anywhere.

It's a tale of cozy relationships, questionable planning, wacky property assessments and throwing good money after bad.

Continue reading "OP-ED FROM HERALD LEADER: "Courthouse plan wastes taxes, trust - Pike tale shows why Ky. never progresses"" »

Sunday, May 18, 2008

AOC: Laurel County to break ground for $24 million judicial center May 22

State and local officials, public invited to attend groundbreaking ceremony in Laurel County

Continue reading "AOC: Laurel County to break ground for $24 million judicial center May 22" »

Saturday, May 17, 2008

AOC: "Chief Justice Minton will have some ’splaning to do if he upholds Lambert pay raise decision." or so says LawReader

Stan Billingsley at Lawreader reports - Chief Justice Minton will have some ’splaning to do if he upholds Lambert pay raise decision.

AOC: Separation of powers dispute arising over AOC's budget and allocation of pay raises to clerks

Separation of powers being tested in AOC budget.  Story by Brandon Ortiz, Herald Leader -

The state court system is defying a legislative budget mandate to spend $7.8 million next fiscal year on pay raises for deputy clerks. The controversial move raises constitutional questions and could spur a backlash from the General Assembly.

Ignoring the recently passed state budget, the Court of Justice provided $3.4 million in "pay equity" raises for the judicial branch's non-elected employees making less than $60,000 a year.

Beyond a 1 percent raise that all state employees get, the legislature had only authorized pay raises for the approximately 1,800 deputy clerks, who are spread out in court houses throughout the state. The starting salary for deputy clerks is $18,120.

Some $8.4 million more was allocated by the courts for pay raises for all non-elected workers in fiscal year 2010.

News of the move angered several powerful legislators, who said the judicial branch is not complying with the law. Legislators said it could strain relations between the branches.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

AOC: Laurel County to break ground for $24 million judicial center May 22

State and local officials, public invited to attend groundbreaking ceremony in Laurel County

Friday, May 09, 2008

AOC: Robertson County to break ground May 19 for $3.3 million judicial center

FRANKFORT, Ky. -- The public is invited to a groundbreaking ceremony for the planned Robertson County Judicial Center on Monday, May 19, at 1:30 p.m. The event will take place at 73 E. Walnut St. in Mount Olivet.

The Kentucky General Assembly authorized the Robertson County project in 2005 and approved its funding in 2006. The total project cost is $3.3 million. The building will be 9,300 square feet and is expected to be completed in April 2009.

“I appreciate the legislators who supported improved judicial centers for Robertson and other counties,” said Chief Justice of Kentucky Joseph E. Lambert. “Kentucky citizens generate more than 1 million court cases each year. Our citizens deserve safe, efficient facilities in which to conduct their business before the courts.”

Because the new judicial centers often replace older, vastly inadequate facilities, the new buildings greatly increase the efficiency of services and public flow, said Garlan VanHook, executive officer of the Department of Facilities for the Administrative Office of the Courts.

“All new judicial centers are equipped with the modern infrastructure to support data, computer, video and networking technology,” he said. “They also provide the highest level of Kentucky court security through a single-point entry with magnetometers and security personnel.”

GRW Inc. of Lexington designed the Robertson County Judicial Center. Trace Creek Construction Inc. of Vanceburg is the general contractor for the project and Ross, Sinclaire & Associates, which serves Kentucky and six other states, is the financial agent.

Chief Justice Lambert and Robertson County Judge Executive Billy “Hammer” Allison will be among the speakers at the ceremony. Other state and local officials expected to attend include judges, attorneys and the Robertson County Circuit Court clerk. For more information, contact Judge Executive Allison at 606-724-5615.

Here is a picture of the Courthouse being replaced:

Robertsonold

Friday, May 02, 2008

AOC NEWS: Highlands High School is 2008 Kentucky Mock Trial Tournament champion

Highlands High School in Fort Thomas will compete in the National High School Mock Trial Tournament after winning the state championship.

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