Who We Are
California County Law Libraries are governed by California Business and Professions Code sections 6300 et. seq. We are separate public entities governed by a Board of Trustees.
Each individual Board is allowed to enter into agreements with other agencies for the management of the county law library. In 2006, the Santa Cruz County Board of Law Library Trustees entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Santa Cruz Superior Court. This MOU provides the library support with staffing and other administrative services. Without the MOU in place, the Law Library could not afford to exist in its current form.
What We Do
We provide free access to the law, and assist the community in finding the best resources to start or continue their individual legal research. Though we may aid you in locating the law, staff at the Law Library cannot provide legal advice or recommend legal services. We work closely with the Superior Court’s Self Help Center and Clerk’s Offices to provide accurate procedural information.
The Santa Cruz County Law Library was established by county ordinance on August 3, 1896. Since 1896, the library has grown from a few shelves of books in the District Attorney’s office on the lower floor of the former Cooper House, to a library containing 11,000+ volumes! Our services have expanded well past just the shelves, and are now supplemented with online legal databases, informational packets, and educational events.
Much of the Library’s funding is supported by court filing fees, as well as donations and other income from various fee-based services. We thrive off of the support of our patrons!
Visit our “Support the Law Library” page to see how
you can help!
How We Are Funded
County Law Libraries are funded through first paper filing fees in civil cases. We do not receive any tax dollars. In Santa Cruz County we receive $35 for each unlimited case, $12 for each limited case, and $2 for small claims. Civil filing fee revenue has dropped 38% in Santa Cruz County since 2009. This negatively impacts our budget. Limiting the resources we are able to provide to the public. Our latest annual report provides a more complete budget picture. The MOU with the Superior Court allows us to provide a higher level of service than law library funding on its own allows.