Federal Judges To Congress: Sequestration Is Having ‘Devastating Impact’ On Courts

Chief judges from 87 federal jurisdictions signed a letter sent to Congressional leaders this week, which detailed how sequestration has affected the court system’s ability to do it’s job. 

“[Funding reductions] have forced us to slash our operations to the bone, and we believe that our constitutional duties, public safety, and the quality of the justice system will be profoundly compromised by any further cuts,” the letter, sent from the office of Chief Judge Loretta Preska of U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, said. 

The letter said that flat funding, followed by the sequestration cuts that took effect in March, have had “a devastating impact on court operations nationwide” and that “[e]mergency measures were implemented throughout the federal court system to address the drastically reduced funding levels.” 

The letter praised the House and Senate Appropriations Committees for recently approving measures to increase the judiciary’s funding by hundreds of millions of dollars in fiscal year 2014. 

“Still, we remain deeply concerned about the effects on our mission in the event a Continuing Resolution (CR) is enacted for the full year,” the letter said. “A second year under sequestration will have a devastating, and long lasting, impact on the administration of justice is this country.” 

Read the whole thing: 

Funding Letter

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Eric Lach is a reporter for TPM. From 2010 to 2011, he was a news writer in charge of the website?s front page. He has previously written for The Daily, NewYorker.com, GlobalPost and other publications. He can be reached at ericl@talkingpointsmemo.com
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