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Power play: County reassigns clerk’s staffers

Chesterfield County Circuit Court Clerk Judy Worthington – while pressing for additional county support and threatening to cut services for the court – was blindsided last month as the county administrator announced the transfer of seven county-funded positions.

The county is immediately removing those positions from under Worthington’s control and placing them with the judges and the county sheriff.

The move means an eventual budget cut of about $600,000 for her office, Worthington told the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

The transfer decision comes after years of friction between Worthington and circuit judges, much of it concerning the services performed by the clerk’s office at the courthouse.

In a January memo to Chief Judge Frederick Rockwell III, Worthington announced she was suspending “courtesy duties” including preparation of court orders, pre-trial dockets, capiases, summonses and restricted operator licenses.

In a statement to the Times-Dispatch, Worthington said she had requested money for additional staff for more than five years, but her repeated requests to the county administration had been denied.

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