OLYMPIA — Today Governor Jay Inslee signed into law SB 5003 to add one more seat to the Snohomish County District Court bench in a historic move to increase timely access to a fair trial ensured by constitutional law.

“SB 5003 adds a second judge to the Cascade Division of the Snohomish County District Courts at a time when the need for a new judge is urgent,” said prime sponsor of the bill Sen. John Lovick (D-Mill Creek). “Just last year we saw that protection order filings were up, and with a 30% increase in criminal filings the courts are beyond busy—they are slammed. This legislation ensures our court system is effectively serving the people of Snohomish County in a manner which is timely and accessible.”

The legislation comes 25 years after the last judge was added to the District Court system, a gap of time in which Snohomish County has grown by 200,000 residents.