XENIA — Greene County Probate Court ordered the Board of Commissioners March 13 to rescind their recent resolution which would have relocated the court to the lower level of the juvenile court building.
“This Court … determines that the formal action of the Greene County Board of Commissioners on March 8 … in defiance of this Court’s Judgment Entry and Order dated March 5 … directly violates the constitutional separation of powers doctrine, seriously harms the independence, autonomy and integrity of the judiciary, and materially impedes the efficient and effective administration of justice by the Greene County Common Pleas Court Probate Division,” the judgment entry reads.
The document, signed by Probate Court Judge Thomas O’Diam, concluded that while the commissioners are responsible for providing probate court with “suitable facilities, furnishings and equipment in the Courthouse,” the court has the constitutional power and authority to determine whether these are suitable and sufficient for efficient operations.
Probate court determined the commissioners’ plan to relocate the court to the juvenile court building was insufficient in that matter.
O’Diam ordered the resolution to be immediately rescinded.
The order also stated that because the board and the prosecutor’s office failed to provide outside legal counsel in a timely manner, the court is hiring Attorney Kathleen Trafford, Porter Wright Morris & Arthur LLP, whom the board must pay as well as subsequent legal fees. The prosecution’s representation of the court would be a conflict of interest.
Contact Anna Bolton at 937-502-4498 or follow @annadbolton on Facebook.