Endnotes and Resources: Court Security and Business Continuity in Lean Budget Times


* The author gratefully acknowledges the contributions of Karen Westover, superior court deputy court administrator, in developing his analysis, along with Law Library staff Jennifer Murray, director; Susan Regan, legal assistant; and Susan Armstrong, librarian, for their research and insights, and Carolyn Edlund, for research assistance.

1 Court security reduction information was obtained from a variety of sources, including conversations with court administrators, security directors, press releases, and court security articles.  See Lavoie, 2010; Yellen, 2010; Camp, 2010; Dinan, 2010; Epstein, 2010; Messina, 2010; King County Executive News, 2010; Widgerson, 2010.

2 Here are some more examples. The State of New Hampshire Judicial Branch is considering the transfer of the state-county hybrid staffing and funding of court security to the county sheriff’s department (2010-2011 New Hampshire State Court Budget document). Cities within the State of New York are converting from contractual court security services to New York State Court officers (2010-2011 New York State Security Budget document). The New York Judicial Branch is assessing contractual security agreements with local municipalities to ensure all of the public’s safety and security needs are met. Where and when appropriate, local court security arrangements will be replaced with unified court system, state-paid court security officers (2010-2011 New York State Security Budget request).

3 Colorado state courts are extending court security procedures to court parking lots and to judges’ homes (Schoen and Mickish, 2005). Texas HB 1380 provides that courthouse security funds may be used to provide security for associate judges (State of Texas Legislature H.B. 1380); the State of Minnesota includes the court parking lots as part of the court security perimeter (State of Minnesota Court Security Manual, 2008).

4 Colorado state courts have extensively reorganized court security staff to create the most effective court security system their budget can afford and have focused on limiting building access to a single guarded security-station entrance (Schoen and Mickish, 2005). The California Court System secured 2008 funding for new security entrance stations for trial courts statewide and consolidated entrances into one main entrance (California Administrative of the Office of the Courts 2007-2008 budget).

5 Here are some examples of court security training in other states. Maine State Courts have focused on (1) defusing of tense situations and (2) how to handle a situation where a weapon is detected through security screening (Saufley, 2010). Illinois state courts train court security staff on crowd control, rapid deployment, evacuations, and a variety of “use-of-force” options, such as firearms, less-lethal weapons, Tasers, OC foam, and batons (Orphan, 2010). Pennsylvania court security staff received training in personal security and court safety, focusing on how to effectively deal with verbally and physically disruptive litigants (Administrative Office of the Pennsylvania Courts, 2007). New York State’s Court Officer Training Academy provides a 14-week training program to all New York State court-officer candidates, which has been maintained in the New York state court’s 2010-2011 budget. Colorado state court security staff have received more security and workplace-violence training (Schoen and Mickish, 2005).

6 A number of courts have established internal emergency management Web sites to improve communication. The Michigan State Court Security Division launched its first trial court security and emergency management Web site on the Michigan Court Application Portal (2009-2010 Michigan State Court Budget document)


Administrative Office of the Pennsylvania Courts (2007). “Pennsylvania Supreme Court Upgrades Security at County Courthouses,” Press Release, September 25.

Bell, R. M. (2007). “Written Testimony on Improving the Security of Our State Courts.” Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security, U.S. House of Representatives Subcommittee Hearing, May 3.

Camp, T. (2010). “Threat Prompts Tighter Courthouse Security,” ABC News 12, June 21.

Casey, P. (2006). “A National Strategic Plan for Judicial Branch Security.” Prepared for the National Center for State Courts and the National Sheriffs’ Association, February 7.

Dinan, E. (2010). “Broderick on Budget Cuts: Civil Trials Will Suffer; Expect Slowdowns, Delays,” Seacoastonline.com, April 21.

Epstein, S. (2010). “Budget Cuts for N.J. Sheriffs’ Departments Impacts Courthouse Security,”NJ.com, January 19.

King County Executive News (2010). “Executive Proposed Budget to Include More Than $7 Million in Cuts to Services Provided by Sheriff,” Press Release, September 16.

Lavoie, D. (2010). “Budget Cuts Force Tough Choices on Court Security,” Associated Press, January 10.

Messina, I. (2010). “Sheriff Plans Courthouse Security Cuts; No Layoffs Yet,” Toledo Blade, May 27.

National Association for Court Management (2006). Business Continuity Management Mini Guide.Williamsburg, VA: National Association for Court Management.

— (2005). Court Security Guide. Williamsburg, VA: National Association for Court Management.

Orphan, C. (2010). “The Evolution of Court Security: Facing New Challenges,” 2:1 Deputy and Court Officer 28.

Raftery, W. E., ed. (2007). “Mini-Symposium on Court Security,” 28 Justice System Journal 16.

Saufley, L. I. (2010). “State of the Judiciary, January 26, 2010: Building for the Future in Precarious Times,” 25 Maine Bar Journal 72.

Schoen, K., and J. Mickish (2005). “Workplace Violence: Issues for Lawyers in Colorado,” 34 Colorado Lawyer 37.

Widgerson, J. (2010). “Stubborn Milwaukee County Union Hurts Own Members,” Blog, Mi (McIver Institute) Perspectives, March.

Yellen, L. (2010). “Budget Cuts Leave County Judges with Less Security,” FOX Chicago News, March 8.