Vermont federal courthouse to close

The United States District Court for the District of Vermont will close its Brattleboro courthouse at the end of this month, with the retirement of Senior Judge Garvan Murtha. Judge Murtha was the only federal judge sitting in Brattleboro.

This is another example of the courts trying to balance cost and efficiency with access to justice. It is probably not a catastrophe for a single courthouse to close and district business to consolidate, especially in a geographically small state like Vermont. But it does say something to smaller communities about their relevance in the eyes of the justice system when an existing courthouse closes.