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Issued: 30 January 2015
The newly built Coffs Harbour Courthouse was opened today by the Attorney General, the Hon. Brad Hazzard and Member for Coffs Harbour, Mr Andrew Fraser MP.
The four-storey courthouse is 50 per cent larger than the city's old courthouse and is equipped with world class facilities to make hearings more efficient and secure.
The $73 million construction of a courthouse and police station, located on the site of the old Forests NSW depot, makes Coffs Harbour the largest justice precinct in regional NSW.
With five courtrooms, the building will host District and Supreme Court jury trials, hearings in the Local Court, Federal Circuit Court, Industrial Relations Commission, Fair Work Commission and NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal, and mediations.
Each courtroom has video conferencing technology to screen bail applications made from prisons and evidence from off-site witnesses.
Vulnerable witnesses will be able to give video evidence from a private suite, rather than in the courtroom. The complex also has a safe waiting room for victims of domestic violence and their children.
The courthouse, which is fully accessible to people with a disability, has extensive jury facilities, including assembly and deliberation rooms.
The complex has 15 interview rooms as well as dedicated rooms for the NSW Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, Legal Aid and the court liaison officer for the Justice Health & Forensic Mental Health Network.
Closed Circuit Television cameras will monitor the building and an airport-style scanner and metal detector will also be available.
The Local and District Court will begin sitting on 2 February 2015, which is the first day of the new law term.