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The Sanpete Justice Court has begun operations at the courthouse in Manti.

The Sanpete County Commission approved the employment of two part-time clerks and the expenditure of around $5,000 in start-up money. It also approved the continued part-time employment of Ned Jensen, who was appointed judge of the Sanpete Justice Court, as judge of the Ephraim and Manti city courts.Jensen has been judge of the city courts for several years.

The part-time clerks are Melody Hanson and Connie Cox, who work alternate shifts. Both have had legal experience.

The $5,000 in start-up money has been used for the purchase of a computer, a printer, office furniture and supplies. The court is located on the third floor of the county courthouse, and Jensen uses the district or circuit courtroom on the days that he holds court.

The Sanpete Justice Court is in operation five days a week on a six hour a day basis. It results from the consolidation of the county's two precinct courts, which had their offices in Mt. Pleasant and in Manti.

The consolidation is expected to save the county money, since it eliminates one justice and one office, and at the same time provide better public access to the legal system. It is also expected to provide the county with more revenue from fines, forfeitures and other services.