Lawyers pushing for more services at court

Law Institute of Victoria president Stuart Webb, right, joined south-west law advocates Robert Morgan and Ian Pugh to push for a Magistrate to sit in court an additional day a week in the Colac Magistrate Court.

Colac Magistrate’s Court needs more days with a sitting Magistrate, Victoria’s leading legal society says.

The Law Institute of Victoria has thrown its support behind a push to have a magistrate in Colac more often, with its top representative visiting the city this week to meet with local legal representatives and advocate for improvements to Colac’s court system.

“Ultimately we would like to see a new courthouse, but probably one of the immediate priorities would be to have the magistrate come down for an extra day,” LIV president Stuart Webb said.

Mr Webb said Colac’s court currently heard up to 60 matters split between two courtrooms during a sitting day, with the courthouse open three days a week but a Magistrate present on Mondays only.

Mr Webb said Colac would also need a new courthouse to deal with the demand from a boost to police facilities.

“When you create a new facility like the police station, $11 million spent on that and 70 police officers sitting there, it then creates work – they’re going to be creating a workload that would be at the extent of this court’s ability. Sixty matters a day is a lot of work, and it’s going to just grow and grow,” he said.

See today’s Colac Herald for more.

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