The federal courts servicing New York City and Long Island are facing force reductions that could compromise public safety and security.
Due to sequestration budget cuts, the federal courts’ budgets are huge, and any cuts could have particularly detrimental effects, The Wall Street Journal reports. According to the New York County Bar Association, the overall budget for the Southern District of New York is now lower than it was in 2008, minus rent paid to the General Services Administration, as is the 2013 budget for the Eastern District of New York.
The big concern is “courthouse security in both districts, whose caseloads include terrorism as well as matters involving organized crime, drug trafficking and racketeering. Security officers are working reduced hours, and some systems and equipment has been eliminated, creating what the bar group called ‘a substantial risk to the safety and security of judges, employees, jurors, and litigants. Nor is this a hypothetical risk,’” according to the Wall Street Journal.