County sets public hearing on Wednesday about creating district court

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 17 July 2023 at 10:03 am

ALBION – The Orleans County Legislature has set a public hearing for 7 p.m. on Wednesday to take comments about creating a district court.

The hearing will be in the legislative chambers at the County Office Building, 14016 Route 31.

(The public may also attend the hearing virtually through Zoom video conferencing or by telephone at 1-646-558-8656 – Meeting ID: 85336464419, Passcode: 476872.)

The Legislature in April authorized a committee to look at the potential implementation of a district court in the county, with the issue possibly going to a public vote in November.

The Legislature cited increasing complexities and frequent changes in state laws with the criminal justice system. Forming a consolidated district court could result in a more effective local court system, legislators said in authorizing the formation of a committee.

The committee includes District Attorney Joe Cardone, Sheriff Chris Bourke, Public Defender Joanne Best, Albion Town Justice Joe Fuller (representing the Orleans County Magistrates Association), Assistant DA Susan Howard, County Chief Administrative Officer Jack Welch, former Gaines Town Justice and Assistant DA Bruce Schmidt and county legislators John Fitzak and Skip Draper.