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Clerk funding case case goes to Supreme Court

The 1st District Court of Appeal in May ruled against Brenda Forman.

The Broward County clerk of court wants Florida Supreme Court justices to take up a dispute about whether the state has unconstitutionally underfunded the clerk’s office.

Attorneys for Clerk Brenda Forman filed a notice this week that is a first step in asking the Supreme Court to decide the issue, according to documents posted Friday on the court’s website. The 1st District Court of Appeal in May ruled against Forman, overturning a decision last year by a Leon County circuit judge.

The appeals court said the case focused on portions of filing fees that clerks are required to send to the state, with the Legislature then diverting part of the money to other purposes. The ruling said Forman argued that the “diversion of fees resulted in her office being so underfunded that it was unable to perform its constitutional duties.” But a three-judge panel of the appeals court said Forman “failed to prove her office was unconstitutionally underfunded because she failed to put forth any evidence that the alleged lack of funding impacted her ability to meet her constitutional duties or impacted litigants’ constitutional rights.”

The notice filed this week, as is common, did not detail arguments that Forman’s attorneys will make at the Supreme Court.

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Republished with permission of the News Service of Florida.

The News Service of Florida provides journalists, lobbyists, government officials and other civic leaders with comprehensive, objective information about the activities of state government year-round.

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