Weather Prompts Closure To Sixth Judicial Circuit Monday
By Jeff Bossert
Monday’s forecast of subzero temperatures, wind and snow has prompted the closure of all courthouses in the 6th Judicial Circuit, including Champaign County.
Chief 6th District Judge Dan Flannel of Moultrie County made the announcement Friday afternoon. That means all circuit court proceedings in Champaign, Dewitt, Douglas, Macon, Moultrie, and Piatt counties will be postponed, at least for a day.
Brian Kelly is the Chief Deputy for the Champaign County Circuit Clerk. He said anyone scheduled for jury duty on Monday should be scheduled for Tuesday, but jurors are asked to call the courthouse’s automated line Monday evening to be sure.
But Kelly says re-scheduling court appearances will be a little more difficult. He says anyone with a hearing scheduled for Jan. 6th will have to be rescheduled.
"It will take a little time for the courts to decide when their next open dates are to reset those dates."
Macon County Presiding Judge A.G. Webber encourages those who were scheduled to be in court Monday to check the circuit clerk website for updates.
Champaign County Sheriff Dan Walsh said he can recall three prior times during his 11 years in office that weather has forced the courthouse to close.
Chief Judge Flannel said it's likely the first time that all courthouses in the circuit opted to close a few days in advance of severe weather.
"It's a situation where, particularly in the bigger counties, where they end up with people standing in line to get in in the mornings," he said. "We just can't take that risk with these temperatures that are predicted. I know Champaign County has the situation on Mondays frequently where they've got people lined up, going outside the doors. We just can't have that."
The Champaign County Brookens Administrative Center will also be closed on Monday.