Public Defense Reform

Gideon Alert: US Senate Judiciary introduces legislation to improve and enforce Sixth Amendment right to counsel services

BY David Carroll on Thursday, September 30, 2010 at 10:21 AM

On September 27, 2010, the United States Senate, Committee on the Judiciary, Chairman Patrick Leahy introduced the “Justice For All Reauthorization Act of 2010” (JFAA 2010).  The Act includes provisions to assist states in improving Sixth Amendment right to counsel services, while simultaneously empowering the Department of Justice (DOJ) to sue those that do not.  In a press release, Senator Leahy said “[t]oday, we rededicate ourselves to building a criminal justice system in which the innocent remain free, the guilty are punished, and all sides have the tools, resources, and knowledge they need to advance the cause of justice.”

Justice For All Act (JFAA) reauthorization bill, introduced in September 2010 by U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy.

Author/Organization: US Senator Patrick Leahy
Publication Date: 09/30/2010

Items contained in the NLADA Library do not and are not meant to constitute advice of any kind. Content in the NLADA Library is contributed by users. If you believe this material infringes your or any other person’s copyright or if you feel that the material is inappropriate, please report this to NLADA Staff by clicking below.

FLAG THIS CONTENT

Gideon Alert: MN judge will not let PDs out of open cases, but authorizes office to hire attorneys and bill state

BY David Carroll on Thursday, August 19, 2010 at 9:20 AM

On April 13, 2010, Gideon Alerts reported on Minnesota Public Defenders filing a labor grievance over high caseloads.  An 89-page report from the state legislative auditor states that heavy public defender workload impedes the efficiency of the courts, yet the legislature has not acted to provide relief. 

Gideon Alert: Transparency in Federal Criminal Justice Grants

BY David Carroll on Thursday, August 12, 2010 at 12:22 PM

Louisiana has a decentralized form of government.  With the ratification of the 1974 Louisiana Constitution, local subdivisions – known as parishes – were empowered with broad home rule authority, reversing the traditional concept of local government as a “creature of the state” possessing only delegated authority.  Locally elected governing boards (“police juries”) hold broad home rule authority, but their authority is disbursed across both the legislative and administrative functions such that there is no strong local administrative officer (e.g., a county manager).  The result is that, in most parishes, the Sheriff is the elected official who exerts the most control over local functions.

Gideon Alert: Legislative sponsor of the Montana Public Defender Act of 2005 calls for the system to be dismantled

BY David Carroll on Monday, August 2, 2010 at 2:45 PM

On June 9, 2005, Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer signed into law the Public Defender Act of 2005.  The Act created an independent 11-member public defender commission that is statutorily bound to issue standards and to hire and oversee a Chief State Public Defender and other centralized staff.  At the same time, the Act provides the flexibility required to address the diverse needs of a geographically large yet sparsely populated state.  Deputy Chief Defenders operating in eleven distinct geographic regions monitor and enforce commission standards – some by relying on public defender offices, others by employing contract defenders.  Indigent defense providers in the regions are supported by the Chief State Defender’s centralized staff, including: a Director of Training; the State Appellate Office; a State Serious Crimes Defender Unit; and, Director of Management Information Services.

Gideon Alert: Prosecutor calls Missouri PD workload crisis a "contrivance" as more attorneys turn back cases

BY David Carroll on Thursday, July 29, 2010 at 2:47 PM

On July 29, 2010, the St. Louis Today reported that public defenders in that city are considering refusing new cases, as their colleagues at the Missouri State Public Defenders (MSPD) have already done in Springfield and Troy.  The news story also reports that the prosecuting attorney calls the whole public defender caseload issue “contrived” because prosecutors handle a far greater percentage of cases than do public defenders.

The Spangenberg Group ssesses the workload crisis in Missouri, measuring each of the actions of the Missouri State Public Defender aganist the American Bar Associations'Eight Guidelines of Public Defense Workload.

Author/Organization: The Spangenberg Group
Publication Date: 07/29/2009

Items contained in the NLADA Library do not and are not meant to constitute advice of any kind. Content in the NLADA Library is contributed by users. If you believe this material infringes your or any other person’s copyright or if you feel that the material is inappropriate, please report this to NLADA Staff by clicking below.

FLAG THIS CONTENT

The Spangenberg Group, under the auspices of the American Bar Association, Bar Information Program, assess the public defender workload crisis.

Author/Organization: The Spangenberg Group
Publication Date: 06/01/1993

Items contained in the NLADA Library do not and are not meant to constitute advice of any kind. Content in the NLADA Library is contributed by users. If you believe this material infringes your or any other person’s copyright or if you feel that the material is inappropriate, please report this to NLADA Staff by clicking below.

FLAG THIS CONTENT

Early recommendations to the Missouri State Legislature to improve right to counsel services in that state.

Author/Organization: Missouri Public Defender Commission
Publication Date: 09/01/1979

Items contained in the NLADA Library do not and are not meant to constitute advice of any kind. Content in the NLADA Library is contributed by users. If you believe this material infringes your or any other person’s copyright or if you feel that the material is inappropriate, please report this to NLADA Staff by clicking below.

FLAG THIS CONTENT

On July 26, 2010, Laurence Tribe, Senior Counsel for the United States Department of Justice, Access to Justice Initiative, delivered an important speech to the

Author/Organization: David Carroll
Publication Date: 07/27/2010