I read with interest a short while ago where court administrators were contemplating delaying the hearing of cases for a few months due to budget shortfalls. The courts, in their generous gestures, decided to continue with trials and delay drawing pay. How kind, yet how foolish and arrogant of them! The problem still exists. The problem is the shortfall of money. By delaying payments, all the courts are doing is placing themselves in the same financial mess as MaineCare’s failure to remit what is owed to the state’s hospitals. That will lead to downsizing and layoffs like what is being experienced by the hospital system.

My solution is rather simple: Pay the prosecutors and pubic defenders $10 a day, or the same rate that jurors are paid. Demand that it is their duty, and failure to do one’s part will be considered contempt of court. They do not need to collect their exorbitant and excessive fees.

Judges should also be forced into that formula. They are not elite and suffer no greater hardships than the common person. Many would claim that the $10 rate is still excessive, given the ridiculous sentences handed out recently. Maybe then, trials would proceed a little faster and common sense would return to our justice system.

Paul Duquette, North Monmouth

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