Friday, April 1, 2016

House bill would restore cuts to Kentucky court system

(AP) — The House of Representatives has approved a bill that would give the Kentucky court system an extra $60 million over the next two years to avoid what the chief justice says would be a crippling deficit.

The state legislature has already approved a judicial branch budget that cuts spending by 9 percent over the next two years. Chief Justice John Minton said that would prompt 600 layoffs and eliminate the state's drug court program and scale back its pretrial services. He said that could force 17,000 people to sit in jail because the court would have no one to supervise them while they await trial on criminal charges.

The Senate did not vote on the bill on Friday. Lawmakers are not scheduled to reconvene until April 12.