If legislators don’t fund two circuit seats, it could take months to get a hearing in the region’s courthouses.
Two judges in the Roanoke Valley’s 23rd Circuit Court are planning to retire this year, one at the end of the month and the other in April. If state legislators fail to budget for replacements, the region will see the number of circuit judges drop from six to four in a matter of weeks.
There is cause for concern. The Senate’s budget proposal leaves both seats vacant. The House budget preserves funding for one of the seats. Both budgets fill a juvenile and domestic relations judgeship.