Magistrates Court Resumes After Cancellations

October 1, 2013

Yesterday’s [Sept 30] sitting of Magistrates Court appeared to have been cancelled, with unofficial reports indicating it was correlated with the decision to have civil servants take one day off a month as a cost saving measure.

At the scheduled morning start of Magistrate’s Court yesterday, a Court clerk told all waiting defendants and lawyers that all the Magistrates were involved in a “meeting.”

At 2:35pm, five minutes after Magistrates Court should have re-started, Bernews was told again that the Magistrates were still meeting. Unofficial reports indicate the meetings revolved around trying to sort out how the monthly day off situation would be handled.

In July all six Unions agreed to what amounted to a 4.6% deduction in their overall package, with employees set to receive one unpaid and un-worked day per month. Government said this is estimated to save $21 million in the first year

We sought clarification from Government yesterday and today, and will update as able.

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Category: All, Court Reports, Crime, News

Comments (15)

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  1. Chris Famous says:

    Staggered or staged

  2. Family Man says:

    Magistrates Court is unionized now?

    Sure sounds like a BIU ‘meeting’.

  3. Nuffin but da Truth says:

    NO..this is just typical of Bermuda!


  4. Whistling Frog says:

    So everyone takes their one day off on the same day of the month? SMDH Why don’t all of government and its workers set a date and do it all on the same day…that way the public knows what’s closed.

    • Rufus says:

      The Chief Justice needs to explain how his Magistrates were not organized and ready to plan this well know schedule change. Bigger Departments like Customs got it done starting in September. We expect more for the Judiciary!

  5. Rockfish#2 says:

    “In July all six Unions agreed to what amounted to a 4.6% deduction in their overall package, with employees set to receive one unpaid and un-worked day per month. Government said this is estimated to save $21 million in the first year”

    What the hades have the bosses been doing since July? I understand this wasn’t/isn’t the only Department to experience problems of this nature.

    Over to you Donald Scott.

  6. The Dark Knight Returns says:

    We the people need to wake up……This Government is no better than the last……..they say they don’t have any money yet they continue to travel overseas at the expense of taxpayer funds to attend conferences. If the public purse is that bad why continually travel overseas?

    • Hmmm says:

      Difference is, they are overseas stimulating interest in investment in the island. PLP went to watch rockets take off, Playboy mansion and to receive countless achievement awards that did not benefit Bermuda at all.

  7. J. DeSilva says:

    @ Whistling Frog

    My job,in the private sector, has me deal with government workers on a daily basis. If they all close on the same day, my job will be force us to take that day off too as we can not complete our daily business without them. That would be 12 more people being forced to take a pay cut.

    I think should continue to run daily, just as if that person is off sick or on vacation. Some help pick up the slack others don’t…

    • Whistling Frog says:

      @ J. DeSilva: I feel your pain but to wait around in government offices waiting on that one person who will be picking up the slack can be more time wasted then what the government is trying to save. Even calling is a waste of time most of the times. Look at it as an extra day a month to spend time with your family, Awww! Priceless…

  8. Triangle Drifter says:

    You have got to be kidding!!! So all these lawyers are sitting around, presumably with the clock running on their clients, while the court is shut down because of an alleged ‘meeting’.

    Yeah, right, who is dumb enough to believe that one?

    Magistrates Court is well known for being a disorganised mess with paperwork regularly being lost or improperly filled out but surely this one day off thing could/should have been organised long ago.

  9. Just a suggestion says:

    Why not have each government department do two half days…

    That way important information and documents still get processed.

    Make it easy for people to remember like magistrates court issue a statement that on the first and last day of every month they will close at 12 noon. If it is a trial going on just put it into recess until the next day etc…

  10. Realist says:

    10% pay cut to the entire Civil Service.
    Do not give them time off without pay,simply give them a 10% cut and be done.We can no longer afford the financial burden of the bloated Civil Service.If we do not,Bermuda will look like Haiti in 5 yrs time.When we have to start paying for that unneeded new hospital,you will feel the affects of the poor decisions of the last govt.
    The OBA cannot pull us out of the mess created,until the fat is trimmed!

  11. Enquiring Minds Want to Know says:

    @Realist, the average civil servant is like you and me. They are normal, every day Bermudians just trying to get by. They have bills to pay, mortgages to pay and families to feed. Why are civil servants perceived as the enemy? Many work at clerical level and don’t even make much money. If you have time, get your hands on a government pay scale schedule and see what people make. The lowly civil servants have no say in decisions, why are they expected to take a 10% cut and no day off? Would you accept that at your job? Be honest!!!

    On the other hand, the civil servants at the upper end of management are the ones that should be the ones that bear the brunt of the pay cuts. They are the ones making 10G and up per month, drive GP cars and therefore don’t have to buy gas, have government credit cards upon which to charge lunch and dinner (as business of course) and enjoy many other perks. They are the ones that had the ear of the Premier and cabinet, yet sat idly by while the previous government dug us into a big hole. None of these Permanent Secretaries or department heads had the guts to speak up and put a stop to the madness. If they were fearful for any reason, they could have collectively joined together and met with the Premier when they saw the outrageous figures and looming debt. But no, as long as the table was laden with goodies for them as well they sat back and did nothing.

    STOP blaming average civil servants and blame TOP civil servant management!!!

  12. Realist says:

    Enquiring minds want to know.
    I agree with your opinion.The cuts should be structured such as Mr.Henegulph’s suggestion to The Sage Commission!Everyone should bear some responsibility,the private sector already has!