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New COVID-19 measures now in effect in Idaho courts

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Posted at 1:45 PM, Sep 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-28 08:20:34-04

IDAHO — As crisis standards of care remain activated across Idaho, new COVID-19 protocols are now in place in Idaho courts. The Idaho Supreme Court issued an emergency order last week that is now in effect as of Monday, September 27th.

These measures come a little more than a week after the statewide activation of crisis standards of care.

"The order notes both the burden that these cases are placing on our health care system and the fact that most counties were already having to adopt these steps anyway," Nate Poppino, Court Communications Manager for the Idaho Supreme Court, said.

Many of Idaho's Administrative District judges have adopted similar measures based on the number of COVID-19 cases in their judicial district.

This statewide order says masks are required inside courthouses, new jury trials and grand jury panels are postponed until after December 6th, 2021, and the only in-person court hearings allowed are petitions to terminate parental rights and felony sentencing hearings.

Any jury trial already in progress should continue, but the presiding judge can choose to suspend the trial if there's a significant increase in the county's COVID-19 weekly incidence rate.

You can read the full order below.

"Along with that, there's discretion for local administrative judges--the judges who oversee our judicial districts--to take further steps to protect public health and safety in the counties in their districts if something is merited," Peppino said.