Acting Iowa chief justice: Court independence a strength

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DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa Supreme Court Acting Chief Justice David Wiggins has told lawmakers that the independence of the courts from politics is a strength.

FILE - In this Aug. 27, 2014 file photo, Iowa Supreme Court justice David Wiggins gestures in the Iowa Supreme Court chambers, in Des Moines, Iowa. Supreme Court Acting Chief Justice Wiggins says he's retiring. The 69-year-old Wiggins says Friday, Jan. 10, 2020 he will retire March 13 2020. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, File)

Wiggins made the comments Wednesday as he delivered the yearly Condition of the Judiciary speech. He said the Legislature's role is to be the voice of the people, while the courts should speak in a more limited way to resolve legal disputes.

The court system is requesting a 3.95% increase in funding for next year. That would bring the court's budget to $188.7 million. It includes adding 17 workers in county court offices, four additional judges and additional court reporters and law clerks.