The Supreme Court’s building modernization project, begun seven years ago and now three years behind schedule although it is still within the original budget, will be completed this summer, Justice Clarence Thomas told a House Appropriations subcommittee at the annual budget hearing on Thursday.  Thomas’ opening statement is here.  He was joined by Justice Stephen G. Breyer and by Court aides.

Justice Thomas said the modernization, when finished, will result in the reopening of some long-closed entrances, thus increasing the need for added police officers to provide security around the building.  The proposed budget includes funds for 12 new police officers.  Although the project is due to be finished this summer, Thomas said that some wind-up activities will continue into early in 2011.

During the hearing, Justice Breyer commented on the issue of televised coverage of the Court’s hearings.  His comments, recorded by C-SPAN, can be viewed here.

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