Report 2014-107 Recommendation 4 Responses

Report 2014-107: Judicial Branch of California: Because of Questionable Fiscal and Operational Decisions, the Judicial Council and the Administrative Office of the Courts Have Not Maximized the Funds Available for the Courts (Release Date: January 2015)

Recommendation #4 To: Administrative Office of the Courts

To increase its efficiency and decrease its travel expenses, the AOC should require its directors and managers to work in the same locations as the majority of their staff unless business needs clearly require the staff to work in different locations than their managers.

Agency Response*

In response to the State Auditor's recommendation, the Judicial Council of California (Judicial Council) revised its hiring policy requiring those who are newly hired into supervisory and management positions to have the same primary work location as their direct reports. In last year's assessment, the State Auditor acknowledged this new policy but believed the recommendation was still only partially implemented because six managers continue to work in locations that are different than the majority of their staff. The Judicial Council will be closing its Burbank Office (in the Spring of 2017), thus resolving one of the six manager positions cited in the State Auditor's latest evaluation. However, for two of the six manager positions, the State Auditor had previously indicated on pages 26 and 27 of its report that it was entirely appropriate for the two directors over the Capital Program and Real Estate Services to work in different locations from their staff given the nature of the work. For the remaining positions, the Judicial Council's executive management team has concluded these assignments are appropriate based on business need. As a result, the Judicial Council will not be taking further action on this recommendation.

  • Response Type†: Annual Follow Up
  • Response Date: November 2016

California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Will Not Implement


Agency Response*

The status submitted for the six-month report has not changed.

  • Response Type†: 1-Year
  • Completion Date: July 2015
  • Response Date: January 2016

California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Partially Implemented

As we note on page 26 of the report, six current managers work in different locations as the majority of their staff. The policy that the AOC implemented in response to our recommendation will serve only to require future managers to work in the same location as the majority of their staff.

  • Auditee did not address all aspects of the recommendation

Agency Response*

A review of existing work locations and associated travel costs for office managers and directors was conducted and it has been determined that current employees will remain at their present location.

To address the issue for future hires, Judicial Council Personnel Policy 3.1, Hiring, was modified to require that future hires into supervisory and management positions have the same primary work location as a majority of their direct reports, unless otherwise approved by the Executive Office based on office needs. (Judicial Council Personnel Policy 3.1, Hiring, is submitted as supporting documentation)

  • Response Type†: 6-Month
  • Completion Date: July 2015
  • Response Date: July 2015

California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Partially Implemented

As we note on page 26 of the report, six current managers work in different locations as the majority of their staff. The policy that the AOC implemented in response to our recommendation will serve only to require future managers to work in the same location as the majority of their staff.

  • Auditee did not address all aspects of the recommendation

Agency Response*

Council staff is reviewing existing work locations for managers and directors as compared to their staff to determine if there are opportunities for improved efficiencies relative to location and travel. Additionally, council staff will consider this issue with future hires. Council staff anticipates completing the analysis and response for the third quarter of 2015. A response may also be impacted by the results of the classification and compensation study and outcomes from the Auditor-recommended cost-benefit analysis of moving operations to Sacramento.

  • Response Type†: 60-Day
  • Estimated Completion Date: Third quarter of 2015
  • Response Date: March 2015

California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Pending


All Recommendations in 2014-107

†Response Type refers to the interval in which the auditee is providing the State Auditor with their status in implementing recommendations made in an audit report. Auditees must submit a response regarding their progress in implementing recommendations from our reports at three intervals from the release of the report: 60 days, six months, and one year or subsequent to one year.

*Agency responses received after June 2013 are posted verbatim.


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