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Iowa’s Judicial Branch Has Fewest Employees Since 1980s

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FLICKR / LEONIEKE AALDERS

Due to a statewide hiring freeze Iowa’s Judicial Branch has the fewest employees since the state court system unified in 1987, with more than 150 vacant positions. 

A press release states the Iowa Legislature appropriated to the Judicial Branch an operating budget of $175.7 million for fiscal year 2018. This is the same amount as 2017, after a mid-year deappropriation, but "more than $3 million short of the legislature's FY 16 appropriation," the release concluded.

State court administrator David Boyd says the lower staffing levels means work gets processed more slowly and there are fewer judges to decide cases.

"Iowans will not receive the same type of timely response from the judicial branch and the delivery of timely services that it has in the past," he says.

In addition to vacancies there are cuts to training and education programs, as well as office supplies and postage, furniture, and non-IT equipment.