Voters in Kent County will elect two new Circuit Court judges in 2016 - one due to retirement, the other due to an additional judgeship being created.
The addition of a judge means another assistant prosecutor will have to be added to accommodate the position.Candidates have until April 19 at 4:00 to file to run. If more than four candidates run (which I presume will happen), there will be a primary with the top four candidates moving on to the November general.
Also, there will be two more court clerks, two more courthouse deputies and an additional courtroom will be outfitted in space already existing in the 12-floor court facility at 180 Ottawa Ave. NW.
The Kent County Board of Commissioner approved the outlay of $509,064 in personnel costs including $191,324 in judicial staff salaries, $107,609 for the Kent County Prosecutor's Office and $210,131 for the Sheriff's Department. An additional $116,476 in judicial salary and associated expenses will be paid directly by the state.
All of the positions will be filled by January 2017 and the judge's position will be decided by election in November 2016. There will be at least two judgeships on the ballot because Judge George Buth will be forced out due to the state's age restrictions.
This will mark the first time since 2006 that a non-incumbent position on the Circuit Court has been up for election.