New Hampshire governor John Lynch’s proposal to close eight district courts would save nearly $2 million a year.
But some are critical of the plan. Colebrook Town Manager Donna Caron said she fears her town’s police budget, already cut 12%, could not handle the extra gas, salary and overtime for officers to travel the extra distance to a court 37 miles away.
Besides Colebrook, the governor proposed the following district court closures and mergers: New London to merge with Newport; Claremont transfer operations to the Sullivan County facility in Newport; Plaistow to merge with Salem; Milford to merge with Merrimack; Hooksett to merge with Concord; Keene to transfer operations to Cheshire County facility in Keene; and Hillsborough to merge with Henniker.
The consolidation would impact six part-time judges, one full-time judge and 22 court staff.
All eight courthouses operate out of leased space, and closing them is expected to save the state about $1.8 million a year in rent.
Other savings would come from “efficiencies in staff” and not needing as many court security officers.
If the plan is approved, consolidations would take effect July 1st.