Federal Government Considers Closing Federal Courthouse in Wichita Falls

The federal government is now considering closing the federal courthouse in downtown Wichita Falls -- in an effort to cut costs.
    The federal courthouse  -- which is also the downtown post office -- ranked 14 on a list of courthouses all throughout the country ... and is the number one courthouse in Texas being recommended for closure.
    Congressman Mac Thornberry says it's a concern -- because the federal courthouse has been in Wichita Falls for a long time and is important to the region.
    He points out that this decision is entirely up to the judicial conference.
    And he says as all branches of government look for ways to cut budgets, we may see more cuts such as this.
  "A dollar spent is a dollar that we have to be careful of - and make sure we're spending effectively - but you cannot balance the budget even if you closed all courthouses in the country, eliminate all foreign aid, and even abolish the military. It still doesn't balance the budget."
    Wichita Falls Defense Attorney Bob Estrada says it would be a disaster to close the courthouse.
    He says it would be difficult for witnesses to have to travel out of town ... and says people should be able to face a jury from the community where an alleged crime took place.

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