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Judicial Branch Budget and Management
 
Judicial independence requires more resources and greater management flexibility... is the title of an article by John Medlin and Rhoda Billings that appeared in the Summer 2003 issue of the North Carolina State Bar Journal.

Their thesis is this:

An independent judiciary is essential to the proper functioning of our democracy. Judicial independence requires adequate funding for the courts. The courts have a constitutional right to adequate funding and may, in some cases, even compel the appropriation of the funds they need to function properly. For years the demands on North Carolina's courts increased dramatically while their needs have been demonstrably under funded. The effects of this under funding are exacerbated by the detailed purpose and line item limits placed by the General Assembly on the expenditure of funds that are appropriated. Fully adequate funding for all the courts' needs eventually must be achieved. However, as a first step, the Judicial Branch of Government should be given greater flexibility and have accountability for the management of the funds that are appropriated.

John Medlin is a retired Chief Executive Officer of Wachovia Corporation. Rhoda Billings is Professor of Law at Wake Forest University and a former Chief Justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court. Medlin was chair of the Commission on the Future of Justice and the Courts in North Carolina, and Billings was a co-chair. They are members of the North Carolina State Judicial Council.
 
 
 
   
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