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Delaware County, PA, Board of Judges accepts improved assigned counsel plan
By Kate Jones
NACDL member Arthur Donato has been working tirelessly for the past four
years to encourage adoption of an assigned counsel plan with adequate
hourly fees and standards and prevent a fixed fee contract system for
conflict cases in Delaware County, Pennsylvania. The NACDL Indigent
Defense Committee supported his efforts by providing information about
contract systems and participating in a meeting with county officials
along with Marea Beeman from The Spangenberg Group.
In early March, the Board of Judges in Delaware County accepted the
proposed assigned counsel plan, which includes rotating appointments
from a panel of lawyers screened by the Bar Association; four
appointment levels (misdemeanors, felonies, homicides, and capital
cases); compensation at $40/hour for travel time, $50/hour out-of-court
time, and $60/hour in-court time; waivable caps at $1000 for
misdemeanors, $2500 for felonies, $5000 for homicides, and $10,000 for
capital cases; recommendat
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