Statement from Supreme Judicial Court Chief Justice Ralph D. Gants, Trial Court Chief Justice Paula M. Carey and Trial Court Administrator Harry Spence on Administration Veto of Budget
We in the judiciary are grateful for the care taken by the Baker Administration and the Legislature in making the difficult decisions necessary to craft an FY16 Budget that is balanced and meets the critical funding needs of state government. The Legislature approved a $631 million budget for the Trial Court, which would allow the judiciary to maintain its basic operations and continue critical initiatives. The Administration's budget proposal preserves basic court operations, but the $4.1 million reduction in court funding would imperil important initiatives such as our ability to implement the Legislature's domestic violence statute, including the development of a risk/assessment tool that will help identify the dangerousness of domestic violence defendants; our plans to expand drug courts to combat opioid abuse; our opening of new Court Service Centers that assist the growing number of unrepresented civil litigants; and our efforts to continue court modernization. We look forward to continuing to work with the Legislature and the Baker Administration to ensure that the Trial Court receives the funds needed to ensure a high quality of justice for the people of this Commonwealth.