Commissioners do not oppose Splitting Judical Circuit

CSRA News

 Augusta, Ga (WJBF) Augusta city leaders say if Columbia County wants to be it’s  own court system the city is not going to officially oppose it.  

“If they want to leave the circuit it appears that they can and if that’s their  wish that’s their  wish  I’m not all that crazy about it,” said Commissioner Dennis Williams.

“Columbia County is going to go ahead and split off in all likelihood that’s the way the legislature is going to go,” said Commissioner John Clarke.

The city  administrator telling commissioners  he does not oppose the split,   but separating the judicial circuit would  cost  Augusta  about a million dollars.

There are seven judges now in the circuit most of them  are not in favor of the split, though they didn’t take part in the meeting.

“You got seven judges and you got six that are opposed you ask yourself these questions what’s the urgency what’s the need,” said Commissioner Catherine Smith McKnight.

As part of the resolution in support of the split commissioners approve calling on the state to  create at least one new judgeship for Augusta.

“If Richmond County can get a fifth judge I can work with that,” said Commissioner Smith McKnight.

City leaders are going to have to work around Columbia County leaving the circuit because city leaders say legislation will be introduce this session and  it will likely  pass. in Augusta George Eskola WJBF NewsChannel 6.

City leaders are expecting to keep Burke County as part of the judicial circuit.

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