Tuesday, April 3, 2012
Bill Would Force State High Court to Move to Sacramento
By KENNETH OFGANG, Staff Writer
Legislation newly introduced in the California state Assembly would force the California Supreme Court to eventually move to Sacramento.
Assemblyman Martin Garrick, R-Carlsbad, last week amended an unrelated bill, AB 2501, to require that all state agencies, including the judiciary, relocate their principal headquarters to the capital by 2025. The legislation would also provide that, beginning in that year, “the Supreme Court shall only hear cases in the Sacramento metropolitan area.”
The state judicial branch has long had its principal headquarters in San Francisco. The high court normally hears oral arguments twice a year in Sacramento, but the 85-year-old facility where it does so, now known as the Stanley Mosk Library and Courts Building, is undergoing a two-year renovation project that is expected to be completed early next year.
Garrick’s chief of staff, Mike Zimmerman, said the lawmaker want to centralize state government in the capital region in order to save money, although an analysis of those savings has not been prepared. “We’re in the process of trying to figure that out,” Zimmerman told the MetNews.
Agencies not already located in Sacramento can rent space in the area a good deal cheaper than elsewhere, he said. The law will not require wholesale relocations, Zimmerman emphasized.
“Our plan would be for agencies...where feasible to move back to Sacramento,” he said. “We’re not asking them not to have satellite offices....Several decades ago it may have been necessary for there to be [judicial branch] headquarters in San Francisco, but the assemblyman believes that today every agency of state government should be located in the state capital.”
Zimmerman said the bill will now go to the Assembly Business, Professions and Consumer Protection Committee for a hearing, the date of which has not yet been set.
A call for comment was not immediately returned by a spokesperson for the judicial branch.
Copyright 2012, Metropolitan News Company