Fiscal Note & Local Impact Statement

126 th General Assembly of Ohio

Ohio Legislative Service Commission

77 South High Street, 9th Floor, Columbus, OH 43215-6136 ² Phone: (614) 466-3615

² Internet Web Site: http://www.lsc.state.oh.us/

BILL:

Am. Sub. S.B. 171

DATE:

December 14, 2006

STATUS:

As Enacted – Effective January 2, 2007 (Sections 3 and 4 effective January 18, 2007)

SPONSOR:

Sen. Coughlin

LOCAL IMPACT STATEMENT:

Cost impact exceeding minimal in certain local jurisdictions

 


CONTENTS:

Clarifies that the former township of Northampton is no longer within the jurisdiction of the Akron Municipal Court, abolishes the Carroll County County Court and related judgeship and replaces it with the Carroll County Municipal Court and full-time judgeship, abolishes the Erie County County Court and related judgeship and replaces it with the Erie County Municipal Court and full-time judgeship, adds a judge to the Twelfth District Court of Appeals, codifies a planned relocation of the municipal court from Cuyahoga Falls to Stow, and declares an emergency

 

State Fiscal Highlights

 

STATE FUND

FY 2007

FY 2008

FUTURE YEARS

General Revenue Fund (GRF)

     Revenues

- 0 -

- 0 -

- 0 -

     Expenditures

Increase estimated at $12,179* for Carroll County Municipal Court full-time judgeship

(1) Increase estimated at $24,359 for Carroll County Municipal Court full-time judgeship; (2) Increase estimated at $13,003** for Erie County Municipal Court full-time judgeship

(1) Increase estimated at $24,359 for Carroll County Municipal Court full-time judgeship; (2) Increase estimated at $26,006 for Erie County Municipal Court full-time judgeship; (3) Increase estimated at $158,764 annually for the Twelfth District Court of Appeals judgeship; (4) Increase estimated at $185,000 annually for support staff for the Twelfth District Court of Appeals, followed by cost of living increases in the future

Note:  The state fiscal year is July 1 through June 30.  For example, FY 2007 is July 1, 2006 – June 30, 2007.

*The Carroll County Municipal Court judge will begin full-time service in January 2007.

**The Erie County Municipal Court judge will begin full-time service in January 2008.


 

·        Carroll County Municipal Court part-time to full-time judgeship.  Starting on January 1, 2007, the annual amount in additional GRF funding that the Supreme Court of Ohio will disburse in the form of state support to accommodate the change from a part-time to a full-time judgeship at the Carroll County Municipal Court is estimated at $24,359. 

·        Erie County Municipal Court part-time to full-time judgeship.  Starting in January 2008, the annual amount in additional GRF funding that the Supreme Court of Ohio will disburse in the form of state support to accommodate the change from a part-time to a full-time judgeship at the Erie County Municipal Court is estimated at $26,006. 

·        Twelfth District Court of Appeals.  Starting in January 2009, the annual amount of GRF funding that the Supreme Court of Ohio will disburse in the form of state support for the new judge added to the Twelfth District Court of Appeals is estimated at $158,764.  Also added will be two staff attorneys and a secretary at a total annual cost in salaries and fringe benefits estimated at $185,000.

Local Impact Statement

 

LOCAL GOVERNMENT

FY 2007

FY 2008

FUTURE YEARS

Butler County

     Revenues

- 0 -

- 0 -

- 0 -

     Expenditures

- 0 -

- 0 -

One-time increase estimated at $36,000 for furniture to accommodate the Twelfth District Court of Appeals judge and staff

Carroll County*

     Revenues

- 0 -

- 0 -

- 0 -

     Expenditures

Increase estimated at

$31,093 for the Carroll County Municipal Court

full-time judgeship

Increase estimated at $31,093 for the Carroll County Municipal Court full-time judgeship

Increase estimated at

$31,093 for the Carroll County Municipal Court

full-time judgeship

Cuyahoga Falls and Stow

     Revenues

No fiscal impact

No fiscal impact

No fiscal impact

     Expenditures

No fiscal impact

No fiscal Impact

No fiscal impact

Erie County**

     Revenues

- 0 -

- 0 -

- 0 -

     Expenditures

- 0 -

Increase estimated at $31,093 for Erie County Municipal Court full-time judgeship

Increase estimated at

$31,093 for Erie County Municipal Court full-time judgeship

Note:  For most local governments, the fiscal year is the calendar year.  The school district fiscal year is July 1 through June 30.

*The municipal court judge will begin full-time service in January 2007.

**The municipal court judge will begin full-time service in January 2008.

 

·        Butler County.  Under section 2501.18 of the Revised Code, Butler County is responsible for absorbing the cost of supplies, furniture, courtroom space, and other necessities that support the operation of the Twelfth District Court of Appeals judge, which at this time includes the purchase of office furniture, an amount estimated at $36,000.

·        Carroll County.  Starting on January 1, 2007, the annual amount in additional funding that Carroll County will disburse to accommodate the change from a part-time to a full-time judgeship at the Carroll County Municipal Court is estimated at $31,093.

·        Cuyahoga Falls and Stow.  The bill creates the Stow Municipal Court to replace the Cuyahoga Falls Municipal Court on January 1, 2009, the practical effect of which is to codify a pre-existing plan to change locations that was developed by the two municipalities in June 2006. 

·        Erie County.  Starting in January 2008, the annual amount in additional funding that Erie County will disburse to accommodate the change from a part-time to a full-time judgeship at the Erie County Municipal Court is estimated at $31,093. 


 


 

 

Detailed Fiscal Analysis

 

Overview

 

For the purposes of this fiscal analysis, the bill most notably:

 

(1)   Clarifies that the former Township of Northampton is no longer within the jurisdiction of the Akron Municipal Court.

(2)   Abolishes the Erie County County Court and its part-time judgeship and creates as its replacement the Erie County Municipal Court as a county-operated court with one full-time judgeship effective January 1, 2008.

(3)   Abolishes the Carroll County County Court and its part-time judgeship and creates as its replacement the Carroll County Municipal Court as a county-operated court with one full-time judgeship effective January 1, 2007.

(4)   Abolishes the Cuyahoga Falls Municipal Court and creates the Stowe Municipal Court as its replacement effective January 1, 2009.

(5)   Adds one judge to the Twelfth District Court of Appeals in 2008.

(6)   Declares an emergency.

 

(1)  Jurisdiction of the Akron Municipal Court

 

Since its merger with the City of Cuyahoga Falls in 1985, the former Township of Northampton has been within the jurisdiction of the Cuyahoga Falls Municipal Court.  Prior to the merger, the township was within the jurisdiction of the Akron Municipal Court.  The bill clarifies current law by deleting an out of date reference to the township that is still included in the statutory description of the jurisdiction of the Akron Municipal Court.  The clarification will have no fiscal effect on the state or any of the affected local jurisdictions.

 

(2)  Erie County Municipal Court

 

Under current law, in the case of a county court and a county-operated municipal court, the county pays all of the court’s operating expenses excluding the state’s portion of the judicial and clerk of court salaries.  This is the current funding structure for the Erie County County Court and will be the funding structure for the proposed Erie County Municipal Court as well.  Thus, excluding the aforementioned state supplemental compensation, Erie County currently pays all of the existing county court’s operating expenses and will pay all of the proposed municipal court’s operating expenses.  The bill also adds one full-time judge to the Erie County Municipal Court to be elected in 2007, term to begin January 2008.


Judicial compensation costs

 

            Base annual salary.  The annual salary of a full-time municipal court judge consists of a state share and a local share.  Based on judge’s salary information available on the Supreme Court of Ohio’s web site, LSC fiscal staff estimates that, when the full-time judge elected to the newly created Erie County Municipal Court takes office on January 1, 2008, the maximum annual salary of the judge will be $114,330.[1]  This cost will be split between Erie County and the state as follows:

 

·        The local share of a full-time municipal court judge’s annual salary is $61,750.

·        The state share is equal to the annual salary minus the local share, or $52,580. 

 

It should also be noted that Sub. H.B. 712 of the 123rd General Assembly provided annual salary increases each year from 2002 through 2008.  The annual salaries of the judges and justices of the court will increase by the lesser of 3% or the percentage increase in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) over the 12-month period ending on September 30 of the previous year.  In the case of judges for whom a portion of the salary is paid locally, the entire amount of the increase is added to the state share.

 

Retirement

 

            State and local elected officials are exempt from membership in PERS (Public Employees Retirement System), unless they choose to become members.  Most do.  Therefore, this analysis includes PERS payments, which assumes that the full-time judge elected to the Erie County Municipal Court joins PERS.  The state and local PERS contributions are calculated as follows:

·        The state and Erie County contribute at the rate of 14.0% of their respective shares. 

·        Under that PERS contribution formula, Erie County will pay $8,645 annually, while the state will contribute $7,361 in FY 2009, the first full state fiscal year of the new municipal court judgeship.

 

Other state and local contributions

 

In addition to PERS, the state and Erie County also will make contributions for other purposes as follows:

 

·        The state contributions total approximately 2.55%, which includes 1.45% of gross salary for Medicare for all employees hired after April 1986, 0.24% for workers’ compensation, and 0.86% for the Department of Administrative Services’ payroll administration services.  These miscellaneous annual contributions will cost the state $1,341 ($52,580 x 2.55%) in FY 2009, the first full state fiscal year of the new municipal court judgeship.

·        Erie County's contributions total approximately 4.45%, which includes 1.45% of gross salary for Medicare and 3.0% for workers' compensation.  These will cost Erie County $2,748 ($61,750 x 4.45%).

 

Related prosecution and judicial system costs

 

As of this writing, LSC fiscal staff has acquired no information suggesting that the bill’s provisions relative to the duties of the Erie County clerk of courts as well as those of local prosecutors, in particular the Erie County Prosecuting Attorney, will create significant fiscal effects for Erie County and affiliated jurisdictions.  In addition, it does not appear that Erie County will need to hire any additional judicial system-related staff or undertake any capital improvements.

 

Part-time costs and net fiscal effect

 

            The state share for a county court judge in FY 2008 is estimated at $17,638, which consists of: (1) $15,133 in salary, (2) $2,119 in PERS contributions, and (3) $385 in miscellaneous other contributions.  The annual net state fiscal effect of the change from part-time to full-time status is $13,003 ($30,641-$17,638).  For FY 2009, one full fiscal year, the net effect is $26,006 ($61,282-$35,276).   

 

            Starting in January 2008, the annual amount in additional funding that Erie County will disburse to accommodate the change from a part-time to a full-time judgeship at the Erie County Municipal Court is estimated at $31,093.

 

(3)  Carroll County Municipal Court

 

Under current law, in the case of a county court and a county-operated municipal court, the county pays all of the court’s operating expenses excluding the state’s portion of the judicial and clerk of court salaries.  This is the current funding structure for the Carroll County County Court and will be the funding structure for the proposed Carroll County Municipal Court as well.  Thus, excluding the aforementioned state supplemental compensation, Carroll County currently pays all of the existing county court’s operating expenses and will pay all of the proposed municipal court’s operating expenses.  The bill also abolishes the Carroll County County Court’s part-time judgeship and replaces it with one full-time judgeship for the Carroll County Municipal Court effective January 1, 2007.

 

Judicial compensation costs

 

Base annual salary.  The annual salary of a full-time municipal court judge consists of a state share and a local share.  According to the Supreme Court of Ohio’s web site, when the full-time judge takes the bench in the newly created Carroll County Municipal Court on January 1, 2007, the annual salary of the judge will be $111,000.  This cost will be split between Carroll County and the state as follows:

 

·        The local share of a full-time municipal court judge’s full salary is $61,750.

·        The state share is equal to the annual salary minus the local share, or $49,250. 

 

It should also be noted that Sub. H.B. 712 of the 123rd General Assembly provided annual salary increases each year from 2002 through 2008.  The annual salaries of the judges and justices of the court will increase by the lesser of 3% or the percentage increase in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) over the 12-month period ending on September 30 of the previous year.  In the case of judges for whom a portion of the salary is paid locally, the entire amount of the increase is added to the state share.

 

Retirement

 

            State and local elected officials are exempt from membership in PERS (Public Employees Retirement System), unless they choose to become members.  Most do.  Therefore, this analysis includes PERS payments, which assumes that the new judge added to the Carroll County Court of Common Pleas joins PERS.  The state and local PERS contributions would work as follows:

·        The state and Carroll County contribute at the rate of 14.0% of their supplemental and base share amounts, respectively. 

·        Under that PERS contribution formula, Carroll County will pay $8,645 annually, while the state will contribute $6,895 in FY 2008, the first full state fiscal year of the new municipal court judgeship.

 

Other state and local contributions

 

In addition to PERS, the state and Carroll County also make contributions for other purposes as follows: 

 

·        The state contributions total approximately 2.55%, which includes 1.45% of gross salary for Medicare for all employees hired after April 1986, 0.24% for workers’ compensation, and 0.86% for the Department of Administrative Services’ payroll administration services.  These miscellaneous annual contributions will cost the state $1,256 ($49,250 x 2.55%) in FY 2008, the first full state fiscal year of the new municipal court judgeship.

·        Carroll County's contributions total approximately 4.45%, which includes 1.45% of gross salary for Medicare and 3.0% for workers' compensation.  These miscellaneous annual contributions will cost Carroll County $2,748 ($61,750 x 4.45%).

 

Related prosecution and judicial system costs

 

As of this writing, LSC fiscal staff has acquired no information suggesting that the bill’s provisions relative to the duties of the Carroll County clerk of courts as well as those of local prosecutors, in particular the Carroll County Prosecuting Attorney, will create significant fiscal effects for Carroll County and affiliated jurisdictions.  In addition, it does not appear that Carroll County will need to hire any additional judicial system-related staff or undertake any capital improvements.


            Part-time costs and net fiscal effect

 

            Currently, the annual part-time state share is estimated at $16,521, which consists of:  (1) $14,175 in salary, (2) $1,985 in PERS contributions, and (3) $362 in miscellaneous other contributions.  The annual net fiscal effect of the change from part-time to full-time status in FY 2007 is $12,179 ($28,700-$16,521).  For state FY 2008, one full fiscal year, the net effect is $24,359 ($57,401-33,042).

 

            Starting on January 1, 2007, the annual amount in additional funding that Carroll County will disburse to accommodate the change from a part-time to a full-time judgeship at the Carroll County Municipal Court is estimated at $31,093.

 

(4)  Cuyahoga Falls and Stow

 

            The bill creates the Stow Municipal Court to replace the Cuyahoga Falls Municipal Court on January 1, 2009, the practical effect of which is to codify a pre-existing plan to change locations that was developed by the two municipalities in June 2006.  According to the administrator of the Cuyahoga Falls Municipal Court, city officials will occupy the space at the courthouse, which will become vacant after the move.

 

(5)  Twelfth District Court of Appeals judgeship

 

The bill adds one full-time judge for the Twelfth District Court of Appeals to be elected in 2008, term to begin January 2009.

 

Judicial compensation costs

 

            Base salary.  The annual salary of a judge of a court of appeals is paid entirely from the state treasury.  Substitute House Bill 712 of the 123rd General Assembly provided annual salary increases each year from 2002 through 2008.  The annual salaries of the judges and justices of the court will increase by the lesser of 3% or the percentage increase in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) over the 12-month period ending on September 30 of the previous year.  Although this provision exceeds the dates provided in Sub. H.B. 712, for the purposes of this analysis, LSC has used its approach to determine future annual salary increases.  Based on that assumption and currently available judge’s salary information, LSC fiscal staff estimates the annual salary of a court of appeals judge in 2009 will be $136,220. 

 

Retirement

 

            State and local elected officials are exempt from membership in PERS (Public Employees Retirement System), unless they choose to become members.  Most do.  Therefore, this analysis includes PERS payments, which assumes that the new judge added to the Twelfth District Court of Appeals joins PERS.  The state PERS contributions would work as follows:

·        The state contributes at the rate of 14.0% of the base share amount. 

·        Under that PERS contribution formula, the state will contribute $19,071 in FY 2010, the first full state fiscal year of the new appeals court judgeship.

 

Other state costs

 

In addition to PERS, the state also makes contributions for other purposes.  The state contributions total approximately 2.55%, which includes 1.45% of gross salary for Medicare for all employees hired after April 1986, 0.24% for workers’ compensation, and 0.86% the payroll Department of Administrative Services’s payroll administration services.  These miscellaneous annual contributions will cost the state $3,473 ($136,220 x 2.55%) in FY 2010, the first full state fiscal year of the new appeals court judgeship.

 

In addition to the judgeship costs, the Supreme Court of Ohio and Twelfth District Court of Appeals staff have confirmed that the court will need to hire two staff attorneys and a secretary.  The state pays 100% of those annual employee salaries and fringe benefits, which includes $140,000 for the two staff attorneys and $45,000 for the secretary. 

 

Butler County costs

 

            The Twelfth District Court of Appeals is located in Butler County.  Under section 2501.18 of the Revised Code, the county is responsible for absorbing the cost of supplies, furniture, courtroom space, and other necessities that support the operation of the new judgeship.  In the case of this provision, Butler County will be required to pay for the one-time purchase of office furniture in FY 2009, a one-time amount estimated at $36,000.

 

 

 

LSC fiscal staff:  Jason A. Walker, Budget Analyst

 

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[1] The annual salary of a municipal court judge will be $111,000 in January 2007.  The salary could be increased by as much as 3% in January 2008, in which case the new salary could be as high as $114,330.