Chief Justice: "Let Us Work Together" - ABC5 News Des Moines, IA

Chief Justice: "Let Us Work Together"

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By Alex Schuman

aschuman@myabc5.com

@alexschuman

Iowa's Chief Justice Mark Cady kept his words positive in his State of the Judiciary address at the Statehouse Wednesday morning.

"Let us work together," Cady said.

He touted the court's successes, like making court records electronic, and remarked on their shortcomings such as limited staffing. 

"We know that with early personal intervention, more troubled children will be saved from a life of crime and lifted out of a world of heartache," Cady said asking for more help to staff juvenile courts.

His solution - more money to pay for resources to speed up civil disputes and keep their offices open more often.

"Closures deny access to Iowans," Cady said.  "Including those seeking commitment of loved ones for mental illness and substance abuse, and people seeking protection from domestic violence."

Some Democrats plan a push to tap this year's extra money to increase funding for Iowa's courts.   

"We have a big budget surplus and I'm gonna do my best to convince everybody that that's the best place for the money and I'm gonna try real hard to make that happen," said Tom Courtney, D-Burlington.

Gov. Branstad also proposed a slight budget increase for the Judicial Branch in his new budget.  He wants to see their funding go up 3.5%.

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