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The Champion

January-February 2018 , Page 11 

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Inside NACDL: Federal Public Defense: The Mysterious Case of a Very Public Inquiry and a So Far Very Private Report

By Norman L. Reimer

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Author’s Note:I originally posted this column Feb. 12, 2018, on Medium (medium.com), the publishing platform created by the founders of Twitter. I sincerely hope that the CJA Study will have been released by the time this edition of The Champion is in the hands of readers so that there can be a robust discussion about the recommendations. If it has not been released, I urge all interested parties to write to the Administrative Office of the Courts, to the attention of Director James C. Duff (1 Columbus Circle NE, Washington, DC 20544) to request the prompt release of the report.

The recent federal budget deal effectively ended an era of constricted federal spending known as “sequestration.” When sequestration was first imposed, it exposed serious flaws that existed in the infrastructure of the nation’s federal public defense system. Since 1964, the Criminal Justice Act (CJA) has been the primary legislation providing for the Sixth Amendment right to counsel for those

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