Columbus Exploring Formation Of Municipal Court

(Columbus) There may be changes in store for those who receive municipal tickets in Columbus.  Meeting as a committee of the whole Tuesday night, city officials reviewed a proposal to form their own municipal court. Currently, anyone cited within the city limits must travel to Randolph to contest the ticket or see a judge.  The city of Columbus is part of the Eastern Columbia County Joint Municipal Court alongside the villages of Rio, Cambria, Randolph, Pardeeville, Dane, Arlington, and the town of Dekorra. City Attorney Paul Johnson says that in order to elect a new judge, the city would need to post the vacancy for the position by the end of November. That would give potential judicial candidates time to get their paperwork in order and submit it to the city clerk. With council approval, the process of creating a localized municipal court can move forward and include the election of a new municipal court judge in the spring election.  With the city’s current contract coming to an end, officials would have to finalize their paperwork and submit it by the beginning of November to allow time for anyone seeking the position to get on the ballot.  Johnson says if approved, the new municipal court would become active on May 1st of 2019. The conversation was tabled last night, but the city attorney stressed that they have only about three more council meetings before the November deadline.