ethics-thumb1Reduced state funding to the court system has already resulted in the reduction of hours for the Big Bear courthouse as, come September, it will only be open for the first week of the month, with civil matters being redirected to the Victorville District Court of the San Bernardino County Superior Court and criminal matters redirected to the San Bernardino Central Court. This week an additional announcement was made with regard to court operations and, also as of September, all state courts will be mandated to close one day per month through the end of Fiscal Year 2009/2010. Beginning September 16, all locations of the San Bernardino County Superior Court will be closed on the third Wednesday of each month. For what it’s worth, these closure dates will not count as an official court day for purposes of calculating times for statutory deadlines; secure drop boxes will be available for filing on these dates, though papers filed on closed Wednesdays will be considered filed on the next court date. In terms of our local court, though closed three weeks of each month, a subsequent general order by San Bernardino Superior Court Judge James C. McGuire will allow for Big Bear Valley residents to be excused from jury duty, due to the extreme hardship that travel to Victorville or San Bernardino may pose. In other court news, prompted by the reduction in funding, the Superior Court located in Redlands, California is scheduled for closure as of October 12. Additional information on our local court is available in stories posted July 10 and July 7.