In response, Chief Court Administrator Judge Patrick Carroll III made dire apocalyptic predictions regarding what would happen if this cut goes through, "If a budget reduction of this magnitude goes into effect, the court system as we know it will not exist after July 1, 2016."
Of course, those of us who have been harshly treated by this very system, those of us who have lost children and have been driven into bankruptcy as a result of family court corruption, are not going to feel too upset about that. In fact, we are looking forward to it. In fact, if the CT Judicial Branch would like, I can easily compile a list of those judges, family relations personnel and judicial marshals we think the CT Judicial Branch can easily do without. If they are itching to close up some courts because of the expense, and need a few suggestions, I think we could do away with some of the nonsense going on in Middletown.
In discussing budget cuts it is interesting that for the better part the CT Judicial Branch talked about cutting financial resources to the most vulnerable, not to the fat cat money producing departments like family relations. The Branch proposed cuts to juvenile detention centers, alternative to incarceration programs, the Office of Victim Services, and translators. Nothing was said about cuts to services to persons with disabilities because, as we know, the CT Judicial Branch can't be bothered to serve those with disabilities, preferring to deny such people access to Judicial Services instead.
Anyway, before legislators and citizens in the State of Connecticut start running scared in the face of the terrifying scenarios that Judge Patrick Carroll describes, I think it is important to consider exactly what we are talking about. Specifically, for those of you who may not have known, it is worth taking note that while most people think the budget for the CT Judicial Branch pays for courthouses, judges, prosecutors, etc., it may come as a surprise to discover that The CT Judicial Branch also pays for what they call "a full range of alternatives to incarceration and evidence-based services for adult and juvenile populations." The latter definition is so general, it could pretty much cover anything, and does.
What this means is that, in other words, the CT Judicial Branch has economic tentacles in a broad range of areas--churches, hospitals, community organizations, and other government agencies--which goes well beyond their mandate "to serve the interests of justice and the public by resolving matters brought before it in a fair, timely, efficient and open manner." A selected list of such places is as follows:
21st Century Media Newspaper, LLC $11,116
Department of Administrative Services $2,294,497
Addiction Services $9,426,716
Again, as I have said, none of the items on this considerable list has anything to do with judges, attorneys, clerks, courthouse upkeep, marshals, etc. etc. These expenditures are all for social services. Pretty much, if we eliminated them, it looks as though the CT Judicial Branch could save well over $70 million. Keep in mind that this is just a selected list, so there are more social services that could be cut, if these are insufficient and the State of Connecticut would like to go further.
I did find it interesting to see the CT Judicial Branch contributing financial support to so many other agencies in Connecticut government such as the Department of Children and Families, the Department of Labor, the Department of Corrections, the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, the Attorney General, etc. etc. Here we have the CT Judicial Branch giving the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services over $9 million dollars, then giving over $2 million to the Department of Administrative Services and over $3 million to DCF. I can imagine this tossing money back and forth between departments can be a good way of hiding who is getting what money. You don't just have the State directly give DCF money, you funnel it through the CT Judicial Branch, or through some other government agency. I can imagine there is a lot of playing around that goes on with this kind of activity. Further, there is no doubt that this ability of the Judicial Branch to contribute financially to other agencies provides it with a powerful way to extend its influence throughout other State Agencies and potentially dictate their policies.
In this regard, I would like to point out that while "The Hartford Courant" only earned approximately $2,082 in the last fiscal year from the CT Judicial Branch, as a rule it has generally received from approximately $18,000 to $27,000, and from State government as a whole, it has received considerably more.
The truth of the matter is that what we have here is the CT Judicial Branch expanding its power by extending its economic power throughout the State of Connecticut by adding social services to its mandate. Then, at the same time, the CT Judicial Branch has been expanding its legal power and authority by manipulating The Connecticut Practice Book in its favor, and ignoring CGS 51-14 which requires that it ask permission of the State Legislature and the people first prior to doing so.