Clarkdale votes to co-locate magistrate court

CLARKDALE – The Clarkdale Town Council voted Tuesday to co-locate the Clarkdale Magistrate Court and the Verde Valley Justice Court.

The intergovernmental agreement between the Town and Yavapai County comes after what Town Manager Gayle Mabery noted as 10 years of discussion on the advantages of shared court services. In the past four months, the Council has discussed the issue at length, leading to the approval at the Tuesday meeting.

Mabery said the co-location on 10 South 6th Street in Cottonwood will increase efficiency for the court.

“The co-location is different than what people might assume when they think about consolidation of courts. We’re simply moving our court to that location,” Mabery said.

Verde Valley Justice of the Peace William Lundy will serve as the contracted Clarkdale Magistrate.

According to Clarkdale town staff reports, Clarkdale cases make up approximately 10 percent of the volume of cases at Verde Valley Justice Court. The Justice Court will require modeling to accommodate Clarkdale staff, costing $18,758, paid in $6,283 increments over three years.

The Yavapai County Board of Supervisors approved the co-location at its May 2 meeting.

“I’d like to thank Gayle and this town council, Randy Garrison and the county supervisors. Both the crew and the county are going to have to step up and get this thing put together fast … It’s something that I think needed to happen and I think it will be beneficial to us all,” Lundy said at the meeting.

Mayor Doug Von Gausig also thanked Mabery for her work throughout the process.

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