At the City Council Meeting on Tuesday, June 18th, the Council has been asked to review and discuss the “Bothell Court Alternatives” Report and provide direction to the City Manager. The Council commissioned this report (with a cost of approximately $40,000 paid for by taxpayer dollars) to assess whether to keep the Bothell Municipal Court here in Bothell or to outsource our Court services to other cities.
I have read the report and my conclusion is that the findings are incomplete. The consultants were likely aware that Bothell straddles two counties (one of the Consultants was a past Bothell City Manager), however, the financial due diligence only references King County, effectively ignoring 50% or more of the overall costs, or 100% of the costs of outsourcing the Court in Snohomish County.
Judicial is about 1% of overall budget
As I poured over the City Budget in the Quarterly Financial Report (see pages 41-49), it struck me that the Court has a relatively small impact in the overall budget (about 1%), as one of over 13 departments.
You can see the judicial section all the way down on the right side of this graph.
It makes me wonder, why is the Court being singled out and scrutinized?
It’s important to remember that over 25 years ago, your neighbors and friends and fellow Bothell citizens voted to build the Bothell Municipal Court. If the City Government proposes to abolish our award-winning Court program, the decision should be made by the voters.
In a previous post, I shared an interview I did with Judge Rebecca Robertson with 10 Factors to Consider Regarding the Bothell Municipal Court Decision. I urge you to review it here.
If you care about our Municipal Court system, please join me in person at the Bothell City Council Meeting Tuesday, June 18th at 6:00 PM at City Hall to show your support as a concerned citizen for maintaining our Court system in Bothell.