May 18, 2012 - The Bar Association of San Francisco (BASF) stands with our sister bars across the state in opposition to Governor Brown’s proposal this week to cut an additional $544 million from our already woefully-underfunded court system. These new budget cuts would jeopardize access and threaten civil justice throughout California. As you can see from the Governor’s proposal (May 2012 Revise and the Judiciary Budget), however, the revised budget does more than just reduce court funding. It fundamentally challenges the independence of the third branch of government. We cry foul – and all of us need to be concerned about this unconstitutional slippery slope.
Over the past several months, BASF has been in Sacramento speaking with our elected officials. We have also been in the streets, literally rallying people to recognize the dire impacts of court cuts on real people -- particularly those most vulnerable to access-to-justice deprivations -- as well as on California’s business and labor communities, and our economy. We remain committed to this process and will continue to fight for the courts statewide. While it may be too early to predict all of the impacts of the new proposed budget, it is quite clear that all of us in the legal community must act now to save our justice system in California.
President, The Bar Association of San Francisco