Public Interest Law News Bulletin: April 29, 2011

This week: what started as law student project to aid Iraqi refugees has evolved into a shiny new nonprofit organization; LSC cuts impact the grantee up in Maine; Legal Services of New Jersey’s 2011 Civil Justice Gap report is out; Wisconsin’s governor seems to like legal services about as much as labor unions; a week in the life of a deputy district attorney; the loss of government grants could mean the loss of prosecutors in North Carolina; is the Supreme Court going too easy on misbehaving prosecutors?; a grand jury tells Riverside County officials that they’re messing up the county’s indigent defense system; Jacksonville Area Legal Aid gets a $625K HUD grant to help Floridians in foreclosure; the docket’s backed up at the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims.

  • 4.25.11 – in North Carolina, the Post and Courier reports about the impact that government grant cutbacks can have on local prosecutors: “The Berkeley County solicitor’s office could lose two prosecutors within the next couple of months, unless the county comes up with an extra $143,651.  The Moncks Corner office is losing grants that are supporting two of its seven assistant solicitors. A Department of Justice grant for general prosecution expires at the end of this month. A state Department of Public Safety grant to prosecute criminal domestic violence cases expires at the end of June.  It’s another example of those state and federal budget cuts that leave local municipalities scrambling to make up.”
  • 4.24.11 – in California, the Press-Enterprise reports on controversy surrounding the indigent defense system in Riverside County: “Riverside County supervisors failed to follow their own policies when awarding a new criminal defense contract earlier this year, a newly released grand jury report concludes. The report, made public this month and set to go before supervisors Tuesday, asserts the board’s action circumvented the recommendations of three Northern California public defenders brought on to evaluate competing bids. As a result, the grand jury is recommending that supervisors construct a bidding process that ensures transparency on future criminal defense contracts.”

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