California Courthouses Get $5 Billion Infusion

SACRAMENTO (AP) - California courthouses will get $5 billion in
upgrades under a bill signed into law by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

The bill signed Friday authorizes a $5 billion bond to pay for about 40 major court projects statewide. The bonds will be repaid by increasing fines and court fees and won't affect most taxpayers.

Schwarzenegger says the legislation will produce tens of thousands of jobs at a time of high unemployment.

Court officials say they need nearly $10 billion to improve courthouses and build additional space. They say many of the state's 460 courthouses now are crowded, deteriorating or unsafe.

Twenty-three court facilities are in trailers, and a quarter of courtrooms have no room for a jury.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

AP-NY-09-27-08 1634EDT


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