36 Third Branch 1 (2004)

handle is hein.journals/thirdbran36 and id is 1 raw text is: THIRD
BR;;LANCH_

2003 YEAR-END
REPORT ON THE
FEDERAL JUDICIARY
I. Overview
This Year-End Report on the Fed-
cral Judiciary is my 18th.
I am pleased to report that the Sen-
ate confirmed 55 District Court judges
during 2003, leaving only 27 vacan-
cies out of 680 judgeships. At the same
time, 13 Court of Appeals judges were
confirmed, but 17 nominations remain
pending.
Unfortunately, Congress failed this
year to raise judicial salaries signifi-
cantly. I would like to thank all of the
people-including the President and
his staff, certain Members of the Senate
and House (from both sides of the
aisle) and their staffs, judges, staff at
theAd ministrativeOffice of the U.S.
Courts, the Volcker Commission, bar
associations, law school deans and
others outside of government-who
worked so hard during the last year to
get Congress to increase the pay of
judges beyond a modest cost-of-living
adjustment. We came remarkably
close, but will have to continue the
effort in 2004.
The Fiscal Year 2004 budget pro-
cess has been a difficult one, and the
Judiciary's appropriation for the fiscal
year that began on October 1 will not

be enacted until some-
time in January, 2004,
at the earliest. The de-
lay in enacting an ap-
propriations bill has
disrupted the Judi-
ciary and forced it to
operate atinadequate
levels of funding un-
der continuing resolu-
tions.
We appreciate that,
for Fiscal Year 2004,
the omnibus appro-
priations bill currently
pending includes
$222 million for new
courthouse construc-
tion and $248 million
to repair existing
courthouses.The
Judiciary's funding for
Fiscal Year 2004 in-
cluded in the omnibus
appropriations bill,  Chieffiistice Wili
however, is inad-
equate.
The continuing uncertainties and
delays in the funding process have
necessitated substantial effort on the
part of judges and judiciary managers
and staff to modi fy budget systems,
develop contingency plans, cancel ac-
tivities, and attempt to cut costs. Many
courts may face hiring freezes, fur-
loughs, or reductions in force. I hope
that the Congress will soon pass a Fis-
cal Year 2004 appropriation for the Ju-
diciary, and that in futu,'e years the
Judiciary's budget is enacted prior to

l11111 H. xelqnist

the beginning of the fiscal year.
In this report, I will focus on the
relationship between the Judicial
Bratch and the Legislative Branch.
II. Relations Between
the Congress and the Judiciary
During the last year, it seems that
the traditional interchange between
the Congress and the Judiciary
broke down when Congress enacted
what is known as the PROTECT
Act, making some rather dramatic

Federal
Courts
Vol. 36
ANumbe I
.Ianilf 2004

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