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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Gail Gosney-Wrede,  Thurston  County  Prosecutor’s Office,  (360) 786-5540 x 6252 gosneyg@co.thurston.wa.us

Public Comment Sought on Thurston County Grant Proposal

OLYMPIA – Thurston County residents are invited to comment on a grant proposal that involves technology enhancements for Thurston County Superior and District courts.  The proposed project is intended to enhance technology improvements to streamline information flow between judges, prosecuting attorneys and defense attorneys and to reduce court delays, by developing e-forms for court hearings. 

The goals of Phase III of the Court Delay Reduction Project are to: 

1) Reduce delays and continuances in court proceedings; and

2) Reduce costs of personnel time used to process paper documents.

Under the proposal, the goals would be met by:

1) Developing e-forms to be used by Superior and District Court for arraignments, preliminary hearings, warrant hearings, sentencing and other hearings; and by

2) Developing procedures to allow for transmittal of forms from attorneys to the court and to the clerk's Office through electronic transmission.

Currently, Thurston County Superior and District courts still use paper files and hard copies of orders to transmit the ruling(s) of the court to the attorneys, the client, the jail and the Clerk's Office.  This paper transmission can cause delays in court proceedings, cause cases to be continued due to lack of relevant orders being available, add additional costs to court proceedings and require additional inmate supervision time for jail inmates who may have to attend multiple hearings due to lack of available information.

This project, in conjunction with other planned improvements, will decrease the processing time for court documents, improve the quality of trial presentations and significantly reduce the number of continuances currently experienced by courts in Thurston County .

The entire grant application can be viewed on line at http://www.co.thurston.wa.us/docs/bryne-grant/BRYNE-GRANT-PROGRAM-NARRATIVE.pdf

Comments on the grant proposal should be directed to Gail Gosney-Wrede of the Thurston County Prosecutor's Office at gosneyg@co.thurston.wa.us.   The comment period ends July 2nd.

County Commissioners:

Carolina Mejia
District 1

Gary Edwards
District 2

Tye Menser
District 3