As you know, Rule 13 of the rules relating to official court reporters provides that an official reporter shall take vacation at the same time as or at the discretion of the appointing judge. If the official reporter is permitted to take vacation at a time other than when the appointing judge takes vacation and the services of a substitute reporter are required by such judge, it shall be the obligation of the official reporter taking vacation to arrange for the services of a substitute reporter at no cost to the State, unless otherwise determined by the State Court Administrator.
Recently two of our colleagues have taken vacation leave and asked the Court Administrator to pay for a substitute. In one instance the request was granted, in the other it was not. The Court Administrator spoke with me about the dilemma Rule 13 presents but I had no good answer other than I don't think the rule as written could possibly be legal.
The Court Administrator's Office has a legitimate budgetary concern regarding official reporters taking vacation when court is in session. The official reporters have a legitimate concern regarding taking earned vacation leave but then being required to pay for a substitute.
Do any of you (or your spouse or a close personal friend) have a potential answer to this problem?
I believe the Court Administrator would like to see a solution to this problem and if we could provide an answer it would be greatly appreciated.
Your executive committee has discussed Rule 13 and I have indicated to them that I will inquire of the officers from surrounding states how vacation leave is handled by their courts.
In the meantime, if any of you has a potential solution to this problem, please let me know.
Gary G. Latimer, NOCRA President
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