There’s not a whole lot of court employees in the average courtroom here in California. However, one of the most important court employees sitting in a courtroom besides the judge is usually the court reporter. We have said for some time that we’re alarmed by the notion of having to bring ones court reporter as opposed to having the courts provide court reporters in all court matters as a matter of routine. We’ve joined hands with court reporters statewide to push for changes that would keep court reporters in the courtroom and would push for any legislation that should do the same.
Court Reporters are the only credible form of checks and balances in a courtroom. While counsel can advocate, it doesn’t matter what counsel advocates if it’s not a part of the record but to be a part of the record, someone has to be keeping a record. This is the vital role that court reporters serve in the California Courts. While other states permit electronic recording of proceedings and electronic court reporting via something as simple as a desktop cassette tape player operated by a judge, sometimes inaudible recordings are simply not a credible record of proceedings.
Brought to our attention by the CJP or the commission on judicial performance was the proverbial other shoe. Without court reporting, it is becoming increasingly difficult for the CJP to carry out their responsibilities. It is for all of these reasons that we advocate and would promote legislation placing court reporters back in California Courtrooms as a requirement and not an option.
Source: Judicial Council Watcher