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S.D. Courts To Have Furloughs Through 2010

All courts of the San Diego Superior Court will be closed to the public on the third Wednesday of every month beginning next month in response to the state's budget crisis, court officials announced today.

Last week, the Judicial Council of California approved the closure of all state courts one day a month from Sept. 16 through June 2010.

The days the courts will be closed will vary across the state and the day will not count as an official court day for purposes of calculating time for statutory deadlines.

The closures of all courts -- superior courts, the Courts of Appeal and the California Supreme Court -- will result in savings of about $94.3 million on a statewide basis, officials said.

The court closures are part of several Judicial Council actions to mitigate an unprecedented $414 million in budget reductions for the entire judicial branch.

Chief Justice Ronald George encouraged judges to take part in voluntary pay reductions, since court employees who are furloughed also will be subject to pay cuts. The chief justice indicated he will take a voluntary pay cut starting at the first available opportunity.

In San Diego, the Superior Court is in negotiations with its employee unions on possible furloughs.

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