Next Battle For Court Workers: Outsourcing

Now that the dreaded courthouse layoffs have become the new reality, another issue is inching toward center stage for the justice system: outsourcing. The legislature seems ready to limit trial court outsourcing, but opposition is mounting against legislation that would require court managers to actually show promised savings. Lorn Kaye of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education laid out the pro-outsourcing argument at recently, noting that the courts are already outsourcing work ranging from child custody evaluations to security officers.

The new bill would “require specified standards to be met if a trial court intends to enter into a new contract” or extend existing contracts for “any services that are currently or customarily performed by that trial courts employees as of July 1, 2012.” Among other things, the court will have to “clearly demonstrate” actual overall cost savings. See the bill here.

The bill, says Kaye, has already passed the house and is headed for the California Senate. That means it could rumble about as the legislature passes last-minute bills in front of ending its current session this Friday (Sept. 13). Stay tuned. Read the argument that’s being made here.