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Rhinebeck merging village, town courts

Nov 09, 2020 5:45 am
MidHudson News is reporting village and town courts in Rhinebeck will soon be merged. Officials held a virtual public hearing to follow up after the decision became official on October 30. No one took legal action in response to the decision, but there was an informal petition created by village residents. Elected officials said last week they would honor the informal petition, hence the additional public hearing. The majority of both town and village officials supported the move to consolidate for a number of reasons, including how village and town courts are in close proximity, which periodically caused confusion for those reporting to the court. Also, the existence of two separate computer systems creates a number of redundancies and inefficient scheduling results. The village must also come into ADA compliance, have more robust security, as well as a holding area for those in custody and a private conferencing room for counsel and clients. Village Mayor Gary Bassett said consolidation would help mitigate these challenges and will ultimately improve service to both the village and town. Rhinebeck Town Supervisor Elizabeth Spinzia said the town is in favor of keeping village court employees on the payroll. She said the referendum will move forward. A date will be set on November 10 during the village board public meeting. Read the full story at MidHudsonNews [dot] com.