Just as many American roads are crumbling and bridges are badly in need of repair, the legal infrastructure of the country — specifically, its courthouses — is also endangered by age and overcrowding.
Starting this week, early voters in Travis County, Texas, are deciding on a bond that would fund the construction of a new family courthouse to replace an existing 84-year-old structure in downtown Austin, the Heman Marion Sweatt Travis County Courthouse, with a larger and more modern facility. And, like Austin, cities from Seattle to Miami have struggled with how to accommodate aging buildings alongside other budget issues like the growing cost of policing.
MintPress News spoke with Tyler Buckingham, assistant campaign manager from New Courts For Families, the campaign in support of the $287,275,000 bond that would fund the construction of a new courthouse complex on a downtown lot already owned by the state’s capital city. Buckingham explained that while accessible, safe courthouses are crucial to a democratic society, the issue can sometimes go overlooked by the media or politicians.