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Planning in the Court Environment: Perceptions and Prospects

NCJ Number
H O Lawson; B J Gletne
Date Published
34 pages
Judicial planning occurs when State courts or court systems identify and carry out procedures to attain long-term goals. This study shows how judicial planning has developed or declined during the past decade in Colorado, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, South Dakota, and Washington.
Funds for judicial planning were made available in 1976 under the Crime Control Act of 1976 (P.L. 94-503). This study shows how six States used that Federal money for planning. The researchers made onsite visits to the courts in each State to obtain data and to interview those serving on judicial planning councils. The researchers also mailed questionnaires to knowledgeable persons outside of the interview areas. The data collected showed a number of differences in the judicial planning councils of the six States. Some of the differences were: (1) how judicial planning councils functioned or were perceived to function; (2) successes and failures of the planning councils and the reasons therefore; (3) the effect of planning on judicial administration; and (4) the support and acceptance of the judicial planning council by key officials, government entities, and groups such as State bar associations. The researchers found that four of the six States studied had a record of substantial accomplishment in judicial planning. Recommendations are that future planning efforts focus on long-range multiyear planning and program evaluation and that the planning council be comprised of representatives of the major components of the judicial system as well as those from outside the system. 95 footnotes, tabular material, and appended brief profiles of each State surveyed.