Local court officials are halting their controversial practice of relying on prosecutors to represent abused and neglected children, completing a virtual top-to-bottom overhaul of the county's dependency courts in the year following the Mercury News series, "Broken Families, Broken Courts."I am not sure why hiring a nonprofit law firm is a reform. The print article says that attorney salaries will grow by 30 percent.
Beginning July 1, a San Jose nonprofit corporation will take over the job of providing lawyers to local children in Juvenile Dependency Court, which decides the fate of families who have been separated after allegations of parental abuse or neglect.
The county is abolishing the use of commissioner to decide juvenile dependency cases. Santa Cruz county still uses a commissioner instead of a real judge to decide all the family law cases. I hear that he is being replaced in June.