MI Chief Justice warns of dangers of cutting funding

LANSING, MI – The chief justice of the Michigan Supreme Court told lawmakers Thursday that budget cuts are threatening the effectiveness of the judicial system.

Chief Justice Marilyn Kelly says budget cuts are already compromising some of the duties of the courts.
"The less money that's available, the harder it is to meet the mandates," she says. "The mandates stay the same but the money shrinks, so naturally it puts us in a terrible pinch."

Kelly says there are not enough foreign language interpreters in trial courts, and the Foster Care Review Board has cut in half the number of children it can monitor. She also told lawmakers drug treatment courts are in jeopardy.

Kelly asked lawmakers to reject cuts to courts that were proposed by Governor Granholm.