Macon-Bibb County officials will now determine the amount of retirement benefits owed to a judge since 2009.
Work is underway to calculate the benefits Municipal Court Judge Bobby Faulkner should receive after a mistake was made when he was appointed to the full-time position. An updated court organizational chart was approved in 2009, but Faulkner’s retirement was not included, Mayor Robert Reichert said at a County Commission meeting this week.
Reichert said he “dropped the ball” with the matter that was recently uncovered.
“We didn’t make any arrangements for the full-time judge to get benefits,” he said. “We overlooked that. We had five or six part-time (judges), and part-time were not eligible for benefits. Faulkner didn’t raise the point. We didn’t catch the point so he has no retirement.”
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Municipal Court, which handles minor traffic cases and ordinance violations, is still under consideration for a merger with State Court. The proposal to eliminate Municipal Court was tabled by the County Commission in December.
Reichert said Tuesday that the Georgia Municipal Court Association is concerned about potential liability of municipal courts.
“You need to ramp up your defense staff. You need to ramp up people that are there and available to translate,” Reichert said. “You need to ramp up and keep people out of jail. You can’t just put them in there and leave them there for 48 or 72 hours before they get due process.”