Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Tuesday, September 26, 2006


Page 3


Governor Signs Bill on Seismically Deficient Courthouses


By a MetNews Staff Writer


Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger yesterday signed legislation under which the state and counties will share responsibility for seismic problems at courthouse facilities transferred to the state.

SB 10, by Sen. Joseph Dunn, D-Garden Grove, revises the Trial Court Facilities Act to allow certain seismically deficient courthouse facilities to be transferred to the state, with counties retaining liability for earthquake-related damage, but only the same extent as if they had kept the facilities.

Courthouses’ seismic ratings have created an impasse in the transfer of facilities from the counties to the state, as required by previous legislation. Transfers must precede any state-funded courthouse improvement or new construction replacement projects intended for that facility.

Chief Justice Ronald M. George hailed the signing of the bill in a statement.

“Today, another milestone has been achieved in the modernization and safety of California courthouses,” George declared.  “This legislation results from a historic collaboration among the state, county, and courts, and will help ease the transfer of court facilities from the counties to state governance, under judicial branch management. All Californians will benefit from the repair and upgrade of court facilities that result from the new transfer process.”

The Administrative Office of the Courts said in a release that SB 10 “will allow for the orderly implementation of the Judicial Council’s Trial Court Five-Year Capital Outlay Plan to address deficient security, access, and life safety systems in California trial court facilities.”


Copyright 2006, Metropolitan News Company