Authorizing Public Defense Reform and Litigation Funding

NACDL makes the commitment to provide up to $45,000 for systemic litigation during the period of Fiscal Year 2018 through Fiscal Year 2020, and sets forth certain relevant procedures.

WHEREAS the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) continues to be committed to advancing public defense systems that ensure quality representation for all accused individuals;

WHEREAS NACDL has authorized its Public Defense Committee (PDC) to meet that commitment through the development and pursuit of systemic Public Defense litigation, reform and education (hereinafter “litigation”);

WHEREAS systemic litigation and reform efforts require a long-term, multi-year commitment of substantial funds for case development and litigation expenses;

WHEREAS it is difficult to predict litigation and reform expenditures for any one fiscal year;

IT IS HEREBY RESOLVED that NACDL makes the commitment to provide up to $45,000 for systemic litigation during the period of Fiscal Year 2018 through Fiscal Year 2020.

NACDL will seek to procure this funding from the Foundation for Criminal Justice, but in any event will commit the sum of $15,000 as a line item for litigation and reform initiatives for each of Fiscal Years 2018, 2019, and 2020.

Any project utilizing these funds must be approved by the Executive Committee in advance of any commitment of funds.  In the event the Chair or Co-Chairs of the PDC determine that funds beyond the amount budgeted are necessary to fund systemic litigation, reform and/or education projects which have been approved by the NACDL Board of Directors, they may exceed the amount budgeted for that particular fiscal year.  Any expenditure for services should be supported by a contract or written agreement pursuant to the policies and procedures of the association.

In no event will the amount spent during the three fiscal years exceed $45,000.  In no event will any funds be expended for litigation or reform projects unless the projects have been previously approved by the PDC.

In the event expenditures for litigation projects in a single year exceed $15,000, the NACDL Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer shall draw funds from the NACDL reserve funds in the amount the expenditures exceed $15,000, provided that the amount of such funds withdrawn shall not exceed the difference between the $45,000 and the amount that had been expended for litigation projects during the Fiscal Years 2018-2020 time period.

It is the express intent of the Board that if funds expended on litigation and projects in a single fiscal year exceed $15,000, no funds need be reallocated to ensure a balanced budget. While the Board and the PDC intend that this three-year allocation of $45,000 will be the maximum amount of NACDL funds available for litigation and reform projects for Fiscal Years 2018-2020, this resolution does not preclude a subsequent resolution requesting an increase in the total amount allocated based on changed circumstances.

Resolution of the Board of Directors
July 29, 2017
San Francisco

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