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L.A. court officials to send out layoff notices this week for more than 320 employees

March 15, 2010 | 11:53 am

More than a dozen Los Angeles courtrooms will be shuttered when layoffs for court personnel commence next month, officials said Monday.

Layoff notices for 329 employees are expected to be sent out Tuesday, said Allan Parachini, spokesman for the Los Angeles Superior Court. The layoffs will take effect April 1.

The final list of courtrooms that will be closed is still being worked out, but it will include several civil courtrooms at the Stanley Mosk Courthouse downtown as well as criminal courtrooms in other locations, Parachini said.

“The public and attorneys will immediately recognize that the court’s capabilities have been dramatically reduced, and when I say immediately I mean immediately,” he said. “Even those just trying to pay a traffic ticket will be impacted.”

The layoffs, the first in a series projected by court officials, will be based on seniority. All employees hired after a certain date in 2009 will all be laid off, Parachini said.

Presiding Judge Charles “Tim” McCoy has said he may ultimately be forced to eliminate 1,800 jobs and close 180 courtrooms.

The Los Angeles County court system employees roughly 5,400 workers. The next round of layoffs is expected in September.

The effect of the layoffs in April will be immediately felt throughout the county system and will be significantly more disruptive than in 2002, when the courts laid off about 150 staff, Parachini said.

This first round of layoffs has “twice as many bodies going out the door than 2002 and 2003,” he said. “You can imagine what the ramifications are.”

-- Victoria Kim

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