Thursday, Jul. 22, 2010
News from the courts
Land Court to relocate to state-owned building
Chief Justice for Administration & Management Robert A.
Mulligan has announced that efforts are underway to relocate the
Land Court Department of the Massachusetts Trial Court to the
Suffolk County Courthouse at Pemberton Square. Relocation of
the Land Court, which currently occupies private leased space at
226 Causeway St. in Boston, will realize annual savings exceeding
"The size of the Trial Court's FY11 budget gap requires aggressive
action on the Land Court lease, one of the largest leases in our
portfolio," said Mulligan. "The move of an entire court department
reflects the unprecedented actions necessary given our
appropriation this year. We plan to relocate the court by the end
of December to maximize available savings. The Legislature has
provided the Trial Court with the authority to manage lease
expenses in addressing the significant budget shortfall."
Mulligan also commended those affected by the move. "I want to
recognize the extraordinary cooperation of those who work in the
Land Court, the Superior Court and the Office of Community
Corrections to ensure that this relocation is accomplished smoothly
and successfully," he said.
"The entire Trial Court is under pressure to cut costs and deliver
services," said Land Court Chief Justice Karyn Scheier.
"Wherever the Land Court is located, we will work hard to honor our
long history and serve the real estate bar and the public at the
highest level possible, given our resources."
The Trial Court Relocation Committee included termination of the
Land Court lease among its recently announced preliminary
recommendations, which were based on a review of all 103 courthouse
facilities. The court will move into space in the Suffolk County
High Rise Courthouse now occupied by several programs operated by
the Office of Community Corrections.
The Trial Court's FY11 budget stands at $534.8 million, which
compares with an FY10 budget of $559.5 million and FY09 initial
appropriation of $605.1 million. An absolute hiring freeze in the
Trial Court has resulted in the loss of more than 700 employees
The Land Court also has been severely impacted by the surge in
foreclosures generated by the fiscal crisis and by the hiring
freeze, which puts the court below 50 percent of optimal staffing
levels. The court, comprised of seven judges with statewide
jurisdiction, received more than 26,000 filings in FY09.