(2) Fiscal responsibility. I manage my court like a business employing talented people, managing and training staff, staying under budget, complying with collection practices required by statute, maximizing efficiency and productivity, utilizing technology, providing good customer service, increasing hours open to the public, making legal information available to litigants, maintaining high morale, building relationships with the community and other county departments and adhering to community values.
(3) Personal responsibility. When I took office, I made teen court available to teenagers for their traffic or Class C misdemeanor offenses and promoted the program to other courts. Teen Court requires a teen to take responsibility for the offense, participate in teen court as a juror and perform community service hours in lieu of playing a fine. Once successfully completed, the case is dismissed.
Similarly, options are given to adults to keep offenses off their record if allowed by law. If re-elected, I will continue to focus on these priorities by deciding cases based on the law, by managing the court like a business and by focusing on personal responsibility.
How can court efficiency or other areas of court operations be improved and what are your plans to do so if elected?
When I took office, I focused on improving efficiencies, reducing backlogged cases, and handling delinquent fines from the 1990s to present.
To increase efficiency, I organized the court calendar so that certain court activities happened on certain days: Mondays – jail magistration and show cause hearings; Tuesdays – civil trials; Wednesday – evictions and civil cases; Thursdays –- criminal pre-trials or trials; Fridays – emergency chambers. A copier was turned into a fax/filings or backlog. Technology was updated. Security was increased. Employees were cross-trained. New court documents were drafted.
To help pro-se litigants, I co-wrote local rules for Parker County Justice Courts and created content for the JP website. To reduce backlog, I set cases for pretrial and/or trial.