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Hall asks lawmakers for additional State Court judge
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Listen to Jim Shuler explain Hall's new 911 emergency medical dispatching program.

Hall County Commissioners approved a resolution Thursday asking state legislators to create an additional judgeship for the State Court of Hall County.

Hall County has two judges who serve in its State Court, and the commission Thursday set in motion the process to hire a third judge. A recent study, conducted by the Administrative Office of the Courts in Atlanta, reviewed the workload of the county’s State Court and revealed the court’s workload requires 3.73 judges to process all cases in a timely manner.

"I’ve met with the judges, and their caseload has increased as our county grows," said Tom Oliver, chairman of the Hall County Commission.

Oliver said the state legislature will review the request for a third judgeship within the next 30 days, and added that Gov. Sonny Perdue would appoint the new judge.

The additional judgeship would cost the county $346,814 a year.

The commission also approved the purchase and implementation of emergency medical dispatching at the Hall County 911 center.

The new program, which has a price tag of about $60,000, will allow dispatchers to give callers emergency medical instructions, such as how to perform the Heimlich maneuver or CPR, while an ambulance is en route to the emergency.

"We’re seeing more and more of a need for that," said Jim Shuler, Hall County administrator. "Instead of a dispatcher just calming someone down until an ambulance gets there ... it provides uniform medical advice for the person actually giving the person care until the ambulance gets there."

Shuler said that until the new 800 megahertz dispatch system for Hall County emergency services was installed last year, the county did not have the capability to implement such a system.