Supreme Court’s chief appeals for more reliable judiciary funding model

Marla Luckert, Supreme Court Chief Justice, proposed the Kansas Legislature adopt a budget model tied to general state revenue rather than court fee funds. She also wants the state to add more judges.

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January 13, 2022 - 8:50 AM

Kansas Supreme Court Chief Justice Marla Luckert urged a joint session of the Kansas Legislature to consider a way of stabilizing the judicial branch’s funding stream and to add nearly two dozen judges statewide. Photo by (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

TOPEKA — Kansas Supreme Court Chief Justice Marla Luckert proposed during a Tuesday speech to a joint session of the Kansas Legislature adoption of a judicial branch budget model tied to general state revenue rather than volatile court fee funds and requested state resources to add 13 district judges and 10 magistrate judges.

Luckert, who has served as a judge or justice for nearly 30 years, expressed gratitude for the Legislature’s commitment to raise judicial pay 5% in the current and upcoming fiscal years and by working to bring salaries of every court employee up to market rates. She praised state lawmakers for authorizing the hiring of additional court service officers to perform statutory duties assigned by the Legislature.

“To say the enhancement had a profound impact is an understatement,” Luckert said. “Your commitment made employees feel valued. And, in turn, morale improved, and resiliency grew.”

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