Governor's Local Issues Conference Presentation, Aug. 17, 2023
Court Facilities: Navigating Responsibilities, Requirements, and Financials
The state court system operates out of court facilities in every county of the commonwealth. Court facilities are owned by local governments, usually counties, which are responsible for their operation and maintenance.
To report a concern about court facilities, please contact the Office of Judge/Executive in that county. The Kentucky County Judge/Executive Association provides a directory
here. The two exceptions to county-owned facilities are the Hardin County Justice Center, which is owned by the city of Elizabethtown, and the Campbell County Courthouse, which is overseen by the Campbell County Courthouse Commission.
For court facilities authorized by the Kentucky General Assembly in or after 2000, the Administrative Office of the Courts pays its proportional share of the cost of the construction or renovation, as authorized by the General Assembly. When the court system occupies 100% of the court facility, the AOC pays 100% of the costs to construct or renovate the facility. In some older facilities with no debt, the AOC pays a use allowance directly to the local government based on the original cost of construction, as established by the General Assembly.
The AOC also reimburses local governments for the court system’s proportionate share of regular operating costs and nonrecurring projects, such as utilities, janitorial services and insurance, and facility maintenance and repair.
The operation and maintenance of court facilities is governed by the AOC Policies for the Operation and Maintenance of Court Facilities (2018). Prior approval is required for all nonrecurring projects that exceed $2,500. To seek prior approval, the local government must submit a Work Order Request Form to the Division of Real Property.
The Division of Real Property is responsible for:
- Processing and approving requests for nonrecurring repair, replacement and ¬upgrade projects in court facilities; monitoring progress of projects; and authorizing reimbursements for approved projects.
- Ensuring that the local government is providing necessary maintenance, janitorial services and upkeep for court facilities.
- Maintaining copies of floor plans and insurance for court facilities.
- Performing space audits in court facilities.
- Processing space requests and leasing property when insufficient space is available in court facilities.
- Engaging janitorial services for leased property.
- Assessing furniture needs, adopting furniture standards and ordering furniture for court facilities.
- Processing orders for keys used in court facilities.
- Assisting with any facility related emergency situations that arise.
The division also manages fleet vehicles, guest services, and shipping and receiving for the Administrative Office of the Courts’ central office in Frankfort.