SAN FRANCISCO—The Judicial Council at its March 2 business meeting approved a framework to help courts and other judicial branch entities with disaster recovery planning efforts, which are critical in enabling the recovery of data and services in the event of a disaster.

“Recovering from a disaster is an extremely important topic for the courts,” said Judge Sheila Hanson, chair of the council’s Information Technology Advisory Committee. “We heard from multiple courts that wanted to use the final documents as soon as possible.”

The proposed framework includes a “how to” guide and model template that courts can fill in to create their own plans. It also has information on addressing corrupted backup systems, controlling access to those backups, and cloud options.

The need for disaster planning was clear last fall, as wildfires threatened courthouses and caused temporary closures, and mudslides prompted one court to open a satellite office for stranded employees across county lines.

The council also approved the development of funding requests to the Legislature to help courts with plan adoption and disaster recovery software and hardware. Watch (best viewed in Internet Explorer)


Next-Generation IT Hosting
In addition to approving the disaster recovery framework, the council also adopted a new guide to help courts evaluate hosting solutions for their local IT needs, including case management systems, jury systems, e-mail and web servers. The guide covers topics such as hosting options and service level expectations, and provides court leaders with information on transition planning and budgeting. The council’s IT workgroup that developed the guide received input from judges, court staff, and technology experts. Watch (best viewed in Internet Explorer)

An archived videocast of the entire meeting broken out by topic will be available on the council’s meeting information webpage.