Hamilton County lawmakers: Push for new court takes step forward

Posted by: Andi Sommers  | Thursday, January 14, 2021

STATEHOUSE (Jan. 14, 2021) – The House Courts and Criminal Code Committee voted unanimously Tuesday to allow Hamilton County to create a new superior court, according to State Rep. Donna Schaibley (R-Carmel).  

Schaibley, the author of the bill, said Hamilton County's population has grown exponentially over the past decade, leading to a backlog of cases in the court system. According to the latest census data, the area is the fourth most-populous county in the state and is projected to be Indiana's second-largest county by 2050.

"As our community continues to see rapid growth, our courts have been strained as they try to manage an increasing workload," Schaibley said. "In order to serve our community effectively, our judicial system must be equipped to work through cases in a timely fashion."

State Rep. Tony Cook (R-Cicero), a co-author on the bill, said the addition of another court would help alleviate some burden on the local court system.

"Hamilton County is an attractive community, and our hope is that more Hoosiers will choose to call this area home," Cook said. "Our local government must be able to handle the growth and hear their cases in a reasonable amount of time."

State Rep. Chris Jeter (R-Fishers), who is also a co-author on Schaibley's bill, said today's vote comes after the Interim Study Committee on the Courts and Judiciary recommended the creation of a new court in Hamilton County.

"This past decade has been an exciting time for our area, as more and more people are choosing to put down roots in one of our many communities," Jeter said. "However, our judicial system must expand to keep up with the growth. As a local attorney who frequently appears in Hamilton County courts, I know there is more work that needs to be done and we must find a way to move these cases more efficiently through the process."

State Rep. Jerry Torr (R-Carmel), a bill co-author, said if approved by the General Assembly, the judge for this court would stand for election in 2022 and take the bench on Jan. 1, 2023.

"A new court allows the judicial system to hear more cases and reduce Hoosiers' waiting time for matters making their way through the legal process," Torr said.

House Bill 1042 now moves to the House Ways and Means Committee for further consideration. Visit iga.in.gov for more information.


State Rep. Tony Cook (R-Cicero) represents House District 32,
which includes all of Tipton County and portions of Hamilton,
Madison, Delaware, Howard and Grant counties.
Click here to download a high-resolution photo. 

State Rep. Chris Jeter (R-Fishers) represents House District 88,
which includes portions of Marion, Hamilton and Hancock counties.
Click here to download a high-resolution photo. 

State Rep. Donna Schaibley (R-Carmel) represents House District 24,
which includes portions of Boone and Hamilton counties.
Click here to download a high-resolution photo. 

State Rep. Jerry Torr (R-Carmel) represents House District 39, 
which includes portions of Hamilton County.
here to download a high-resolution photo.