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Judge: City Court is "crippled," needs help

 

August 19, 2014



City Court Judge Virginia Seigel spoke again at Monday’s Havre City Council meeting to request at least a part-time employee to help get City Court up to speed.

“I wanted to bring the historical aspect of the struggle for staffing and also to give some honor to my predecessors who fought the good fight,” Seigel said.

Seigel said the court has been inadequately staffed for decades and she needs another employee to uncripple the court.

Monday, council voted on the first reading of the preliminary budget. Seigel said she hopes the funds for paying the part-time employee will be included in the final draft.

“It’s all about finding the dollars,” Seigel said. “ … I believe they are there.”

Seigel said she does not want to take away from another agency, but the court has been making enough revenue to afford a part-time employee and will be able to gain even more revenue with the extra help to address everything that needs to be taken care of at the court.

The judge originally wanted a full-time employee to add to the now two-person team that includes herself, but the pushback was too great.

A full-time employee would cost the city and court $50,868 per year and a part-time employee would receive an annual salary of $34,090. The salary for the part-time is more than half of the full-time salary because they would receive the same benefits.

 

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