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State lawmakers add new district judge to Jefferson County

By Stephanie Hale-Lopez
Published On: Apr 05 2013 07:33:30 PM CDT

At the moment, no judges are chambered in Jefferson County, forcing district judges around the area to take turns covering cases there.

RIGBY, Idaho -

Jefferson County will soon be getting a district judge to help handle a growing caseload.

The Idaho Legislature added 5 new judges to 3 counties this year -- including Ada and Canyon.

Cases for judges in the 7th Judicial District are some of the highest in the state.

At the moment, no judges are chambered in Jefferson County, forcing district judges around the area to take turns covering cases there.

"This extra district judge position will provide a lot of relief for us," said Greg Moeller, district judge.

Judge Moeller said the addition of a new judge is welcome news.

"Our caseloads are so high that they've been sending judges up from the 6th District, Pocatello and that area, to help us handle some of our cases," said Moeller.

The state is divided up into 7 judicial districts. The 7th district is one of the largest, covering 10 counties -- including Bingham, Bonneville, and Fremont.

Which means the district judges, like Judge Moeller, spend a lot of time on the road.

"About a quarter of the counties in the state are in our district and we only have 5 district judges to cover all of those counties," said Moeller.

And of the six fastest growing counties in Idaho, four are in the 7th Judicial District.

Moeller said thanks to this new position, judges will be able to get decisions out quickly and have more flexibility in scheduling hearings.

"It'll allow the load to be divided more evenly and proportionately and let us provide justice on a speedier basis than we've been able to do in the past," said Moeller.

The new position in Jefferson County comes with a price tag of about $114,300, which will come from state general funds.

The new judges will begin work October 1st.

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