Locals must take their cases to SLO as Grover courthouse closes

A sign now hangs on the Grover Beach courthouse saying it’s closed.
A sign now hangs on the Grover Beach courthouse saying it’s closed. jmellom@thetribunenews.com

As of Tuesday, those trying to use the Grover Beach courthouse will be sent north.

San Luis Obispo Superior Court officials have announced the suspension of operations at the building effective Tuesday.

Because of unprecedented reductions in judicial funding, hearings and employees will move from the courthouse at 214 S. 16th St. to the San Luis Obispo courthouse at 1035 Palm St. The county court has a shortfall of about $1 million this year.

Court leaders said in a statement that they hope “the suspension of operations is temporary and promise to aggressively seek restoration of the recent funding cuts so as to ensure continuing access to justice for everyone.”

The Grover Beach court handles misdemeanors, some civil cases, small claims and juvenile traffic cases.

The court has also been used on occasion for high-profile cases, such as hearings in the fraud case brought against former hard-money lenders Karen Guth and Joshua Yaguda.

The Superior Court has used a wide variety of cost-cutting measures to close the budget gap, including once-a-month furloughs for its 145 employees, reducing mailings of juror summons and keeping certain positions vacant.

Officials say they don’t know when the Grover Beach branch may open again if funding is restored.