Administrative Office of the Courts
Article IV, Section 15, of the North Carolina Constitution makes legal provision for the North Carolina Administrative Office of the Courts (NCAOC) to provide centralized administration and budgeting services for the state’s courts. This provision came in 1965 after the General Assembly adopted the recommendation made by the Bell Commission to unify the state’s court system.
NCAOC’s centralized operations for courts include budgeting; equipment and supply purchasing and delivery; printing and distribution of forms and other court business material; computing with a mainframe and server farm, WAN, and multiple LANs; computer applications development; Voice over Internet Protocol telephone system; legal support; and a Help Desk for technology and for policy and procedures. For comparison, the NCAOC serves the Judicial Branch just as the Department of Administration, Office of State Personnel, Office of State Budget and Management, Information Technology Services, and Attorney General’s legal staff serve the Executive Branch.
The NCAOC’s approach to centralized operations is to apply its professional expertise consistently in the best interests of the court system as a whole. This is accomplished by seeking understanding and supporting the needs and demands of the more than 500 independently elected court officials as well as staff and by taking into account their diversity, caseloads, and available resources to provide the best problem-solving.