West Virginia lawmakers are debating the addition of another layer to the court system.
Many believe there is benefit of an intermediate court of appeals.
“Well, because the Supreme Court is so limited on the cases they can take,” said State Sen. Rollan Roberts, (R) Raleigh. “This will kind of free them up and be able to take the more important cases.
However, others fear the state cannot afford it.
“An intermediate Court of Appeals is not only a waste of money, but it’s another block in front of any type of appeal that’s been done in West Virginia,” said State Sen. MIke Romano, (D) Harrison. “It’s just going to cost more money and time.”
West Virginia currently has a local circuit court system, and then a Supreme Court to hear appeals. Estimates indicate the cost of implementing a new court level would between $4 and $10 million.
“I think the numbers will probably be somewhat less,” said State Sen. Greg Boso, (R) Nicholas. “We’re still working on what that compsition is going to be, and where were going to structure it.”
West Virginia Governor Jim Justice recently announced the state’s $185 million budget surplus.
The Mountain State is one of nine states that do not have an immediate court of appeals.