chapter  9
Hierarchy of Court Administration: Mission-Critical Functions
Pages 48

Mission-critical needs are those that are essential for the proper operation of the court, both to fulfill its adjudicative role and to be a viable branch of government. The Hierarchy of Court Administration parallels Abraham Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs for humans. The functions identified as mission critical are self-explanatory in some senses, at least for those who work in courts daily. They embrace both adjudicative and administrative needs. The adjudicative functions are those involved in and supporting the resolution of cases. The administrative responsibility for probation varies across the country. Sometimes probation is an independent office with the chief probation officer appointed by the executive or legislative branch and with funding going directly to that office. Probation is a mission-critical function. To the extent that it can, a court should do everything in its power to preserve probation funding when budgets are being cut.