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Legislature > House of Representatives > House Research > Data & Tools > MN Gov't in Brief

State Judicial Branch

State and Local Funding, Employees, Jurisdiction

State funding for the judicial branch was $339.6 million in fiscal year 2017.

Flowchart showing court funding and jurisdiction

*Tax court and workers' compensation court are executive agencies outside the state court system.

Judicial Branch Employees

There are over 2,800 state employees of the appellate courts, district courts, and judicial agencies, including judges.

The state has taken over funding of all ten judicial districts. Counties are required by statute to continue to provide and maintain facilities for the trial courts.

Public Defense System

Total state appropriations for fiscal year 2017 was $82.662 million.

  • The Board of Public Defense is located in the judicial branch but is not under the authority of the Minnesota Supreme Court. It appoints the state public defender (who oversees the public defender system), the chief appellate public defender (who oversees appellate services), and the chief district public defender for each judicial district (who oversees trial work).
  • There are approximately 583 full-time equivalent state employees, of which 477 are attorneys. Approximately 188 of the attorneys are part-time. In Hennepin and Ramsey counties, there are additional public defenders and staff who are county employees (if hired prior to January 1, 1999).

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January 2017

House Research Department  ♦  600 State Office Building, Saint Paul, MN  55155  ♦  House.Research@house.mn  ♦  651-296-6753