Report 2014-107 Recommendation 21 Responses

Report 2014-107: Judicial Branch of California: Because of Questionable Fiscal and Operational Decisions, the Judicial Council and the Administrative Office of the Courts Have Not Maximized the Funds Available for the Courts (Release Date: January 2015)

Recommendation #21 To: Judicial Council of California

To ensure that it provides services to the trial courts as efficiently as possible, the Judicial Council should explore implementing a fee-for-service model for selected services. These services could include those that are little used or of lesser value to the trial courts, as identified in our survey that we discuss in Chapter 3.

Annual Follow-Up Agency Response From December 2017

The Judicial Council of California (Judicial Council) will evaluate potential process improvements in the context of its Operational Planning and Alignment (OPA) activities. The Judicial Council is committed to the OPA process, which will include recurring activities (such as surveys of the trial courts) to better inform business decisions regarding programs and service delivery. Although the OPA process has been temporarily delayed due to the Judicial Council's focus on awarding, disbursing, and monitoring roughly $25 million in Court Innovations Grant funding, OPA will be an important and ongoing process with no formal end date.

  • Estimated Completion Date: 12/30/2018

California State Auditor's Assessment of Annual Follow-Up Status: Pending


Annual Follow-Up Agency Response From November 2016

As part of its review of workforce capacity planning, the Judicial Council of California (Judicial Council) will be looking at business process improvements using the recently adopted methodology for operational planning and alignment (see current status for recommendation 20) to determine if there are more cost effective means for providing services. Application of the methodology throughout the organization will support streamlining of services and activities. This, in turn, will assist with determining whether a fee-for-service model is applicable to the various services provided by the Judicial Council. A fee-for-service model will be a consideration when evaluating alternative, more cost-effective service delivery models. We anticipate reporting back on the evaluation of a fee-for-service model in the fourth quarter of 2017.

  • Estimated Completion Date: Unknown

California State Auditor's Assessment of Annual Follow-Up Status: Not Fully Implemented


1-Year Agency Response

The approach and timeframe outlined in the six-month response are on track.

  • Estimated Completion Date: Second quarter of 2017
  • Response Date: January 2016

California State Auditor's Assessment of 1-Year Status: Pending

In response to our inquiry of when it would complete its actions, the AOC provided us with the following timeline:

2015: 3rd—4th Quarter

- Operational planning and alignment—planning and initiation

- Customer Input: 4 in-person listening sessions convened with trial and appellate leadership of small, medium, and large courts on current services and future needs

- Analysis initiated to inform planned survey

2016: 1st—2nd Quarter

- Customer input

o Listening sessions with Supreme Court and Judicial Council members

o Follow-up with statewide survey to customers/clients

- Survey analysis on customer and staff operations needs

- Operational plan and performance measures development building on Judicial Council strategic plan foundation

2016: 3rd Quarter—2017: 2nd Quarter

- Develop structure for obtaining ongoing customer input

- Develop methodology to implement organization-wide workload analysis and evaluate future staffing needs

2017: 2nd Quarter/Ongoing

- Organizational effectiveness evaluation using performance measures


6-Month Agency Response

The Judicial Council has reevaluated the previously submitted timeline for this and related expansive recommendations and reduced it by six months. We now anticipate completing all tasks associated with the recommendations in Chapters 3 and 4 of the audit report by the second quarter of 2017.

  • Estimated Completion Date: Second quarter of 2017
  • Response Date: July 2015

California State Auditor's Assessment of 6-Month Status: Pending


60-Day Agency Response

Once the customer service survey of the courts has been completed and a strategic plan finalized, we will then evaluate the potential of implementing a fee-for-service model. We anticipate that this will be completed in the second quarter of 2017.

  • Estimated Completion Date: Second quarter of 2017
  • Response Date: March 2015

California State Auditor's Assessment of 60-Day Status: Pending


All Recommendations in 2014-107

Agency responses received are posted verbatim.