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Ca Commission on Fair Administration of Justice Legal Defense Report 2008

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April 14, 2008
CALIFORNIA COMMISSION ON THE FAIR ADMINISTRATION OF JUSTICE

REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS
ON FUNDING OF DEFENSE SERVICES IN CALIFORNIA.
Introduction.
The constitutions of the United States and of California guarantee a right to
counsel for all accused in criminal proceedings, and indigent accused are
guaranteed competent counsel regardless of their ability to pay. Gideon v.
Wainwright, 372 U.S. 335 (1963). In 2003, after convening public hearings and
hearing the testimony of 32 expert witnesses, the American Bar Association’s
Standing Committee on Legal Aid and Indigent Defendants concluded:
Forty years after Gideon v. Wainwright, indigent defense remains in a state
of crisis, resulting in a system that lacks fundamental fairness and places
poor persons at constant risk of wrongful conviction.
A key recommendation of the Committee’s report was that State governments
should establish oversight organizations that ensure the delivery of independent,
uniform, quality indigent defense representation in all criminal and juvenile
delinquency proceedings. ABA Standing Comm. on Legal Aid and Indigent
Defendants, Gideon’s Broken Promise: America’s Continuing Quest for Equal
Justice (2004).

1

Many of the causes of wrongful convictions that the Commission has
previously recognized (mistaken eyewitness identifications, false
confessions, perjured jail informant testimony, faulty forensic evidence)
could have been exposed and addressed if the defendant had been
represented by competent zealous counsel who had fully investigated and
prepared the case. A study of the first 74 DNA exonerations in the United
States found that defense lawyer incompetence was a factor in 32% of the
cases. Scheck, Neufeld & Dwyer, Actual Innocence, p.365 (New American
Library, 2003).
The Defense of Indigent Accused in California.
The Commission has learned that the quality of representation afforded
indigent accused is far from uniform in California, and sometimes falls short of the
constitutional minimum. In California, the primary responsibility for providing
competent counsel at the trial level to indigent accused falls upon each individual
county. California’s fifty-eight counties meet this obligation in a variety of ways.
Thirty-three counties (57%) have created one or more institutional public defender
offices as county departments to serve as the primary provider of criminal defense
services to indigent accused. This includes every county in California with a
population in excess of 500,000, with the exception of San Mateo County.

2

Contract defenders are the primary provider of indigent felony and
misdemeanor representation in 24 counties (41%). Eight counties have contracted
with a single law firm, which provides various types of representation through
branch offices. Some counties contract with solo practitioners. Several counties,
for example, have four different solo contract defenders handling different portions
of the caseload, and one county has seven separate contract defenders. The amount
of compensation afforded by these contracts is often based upon a fixed fee per
case, or a flat fee for the expected annual caseload. While this type of system is
heavily concentrated in rural counties having populations of less than 100,000, it
also exists in some urban counties in which public defenders are the primary
providers. Many counties with a public defender office, for example, use a
contract defender to handle cases in which the public defender declares
unavailability due to conflicts or overload.
In virtually every county, assigned counsel systems exist to handle some
clients in multiple defendant cases where the primary provider would have a
conflict of interest in representing more than one defendant. An assigned counsel
is ordinarily appointed by a court to handle a single case. Only one county, San
Mateo, uses an assigned counsel system administered by the local bar association
as the primary provider of indigent defense services.

3

The Commission received evidence at our July 11, 2007 public hearing
related to inadequate funding of defense services in some California counties,
especially for crucial investigative and expert support. Competent investigation of
one’s case, as well as the employment of expert witnesses, constitute the “basic
tools of an adequate defense,” and are just as fundamental as the right to competent
counsel. Cf. Ake v. Oklahoma, 470 U.S. 69 (1985) (Right to expert assistance in
capital case raising a mental defense).
Professor Larry Benner of California Western School of Law conducted a
statewide survey of judges and lawyers for the Commission. He also examined
2500 reported appellate decisions in which ineffective assistance of counsel claims
were raised from 1997 through 2006. According to Benner’s study, courts found
ineffective assistance of counsel in 121 of these cases, and in 104 of them the
judgment of conviction was reversed and those cases were remanded for a new
trial. Professor Benner reported that the most frequent performance deficiency,
reported in 44% of the 121 cases, was failure to investigate.
Responses to the Benner’s surveys came from 85% of the state’s public
defender offices, 33% of the contract defenders, 109 certified criminal specialists,
and 38 judges. Nearly all survey respondents agreed that lack of resources for
investigation was a serious problem. Further, changes in the conduct of
preliminary hearings has reduced in some cases the opportunity for defense

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attorneys to assess the strength and weaknesses of the prosecution’s case. 1 Every
public defender responding agreed that excessive investigator caseloads were a
problem. Over two-thirds of judges surveyed indicated that providing sufficient
investigative resources for the defense was a problem in their county. In six
counties, defenders had no investigative staff. While some public defender offices
have budgeted funds to retain expert witnesses, others must obtain court approval
for such assistance. More that one-quarter of the offices (28%) report difficulty in
obtaining such approval. The Los Angeles Public Defender’s Office prefers to
insist that the court fund such services.
The Benner Survey also inquired into the issue of excessive attorney
workloads. All public defender offices save one agreed that attorney workloads
were a problem they faced. Over 81% indicated that attorney workload was a
significant, very significant, or serious problem. Lawrence A. Benner, Preliminary
Report: Systemic Factors Affecting the Quality of Criminal Defense Representation
(2007), available on the Commission’s website.
Despite heavy workloads, California’s institutional public defenders have
generally provided competent representation for their clients, and vigorous
1

An initiative measure, Proposition 115, adopted in 1991, provides that the finding of probable cause can
be based in whole or in part upon hearsay gathered by police in the course of their investigation. See
California Penal Code §872(b). Since then, preliminary hearings often rely upon testimony from the
investigating officer unless the prosecution believes the interest of justice requires testimony from the
victim or other percipient witnesses. Under current California law, the purpose of the preliminary hearing
is not to facilitate discovery, but to determine probable cause. Whitman v. Superior Court, 54 Cal.3d 1063
(1991).

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advocacy for adequate funding of defense services. The California Public
Defenders Association recently surveyed public defender offices to determine the
level of compliance with the State Bar Guidelines for Indigent Defense Delivery
Systems, and found a high degree of compliance. Institutional Public Defenders
handle 80% of the State’s felony filings. We believe that California’s public
defender offices, and certainly the largest ones, meet reasonable standards of
acceptable workloads. That does not diminish the need, however, for California to
assure that constitutional standards are being met in every case, regardless of the
county in which it occurs, and regardless of the type of indigent defense provider.
Flat Fee Contracting.
While there is nothing inherently wrong with competitive bidding for
contracts to supply defense services, when such contracts are awarded on a
flat fee basis it may, in some cases, create a conflict of interest for the
contracting lawyer. Unless it is separately reimbursed, the portion of the
contract amount employed for investigative services or expert assistance
comes off the top, and reduces the compensation or profit for the contracting
attorney. Such contracts may also burden a defendant’s right to jury trial,
since the contractor’s compensation will not be enhanced by the additional
expense of preparing and presenting a case for trial. As described by Barry
Melton, Yolo County’s public defender and immediate past President of the

6

California Public Defenders Association, to the extent a flat fee contractor
does not provide services, he or she makes a profit. So if at all possible, the
contractor may avoid going to trial because going to trial is expensive. 2
In People v. Barboza, 29 Cal.3d 375 (1981), the California Supreme
Court found that the contract between the County of Madera and the contract
defender was illegal because it created a disincentive to declare a conflict of
interest. Under the contract, the Madera County public defender was paid
$104,000 per year, with $15,000 deducted and held in reserve to be drawn
against by conflict counsel. Any deficiency in the reserve account was to be
deducted from monthly payments to the public defender. Any balance left in
the account at the end of the year was to be paid to the public defender. The
Court concluded that this arrangement created an “inherent and
irreconcilable” financial disincentive for the public defender to declare a
conflict. In declaring the contract unlawful, the Court broadly condemned
“contracts of this type” pursuant to “a judicially created rule of criminal
procedure.” By analogy, an inherent and irreconcilable financial
disincentive for a contract defender to investigate the case or hire experts
also creates an unacceptable conflict of interest. The Commission has
concluded that flat-fee contracts in California should separately reimburse

2

Miller, California Defense Firm Borrows Wal-Mart Business Model, The Recorder, Dec. 26, 2007.

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the contracting attorneys for the expenses of adequate investigation and
needed experts.
In April, 2000, the U.S. Department of Justice funded a national study of
Contracting for Indigent Defense Services. The Study Report began with an
example of how critics’ worst fears about indigent defense contract systems
came true. The example came from an unidentified California county. It is
a very sobering account:
In 1997 and 1998, a rural county in California agreed to pay a low-bid
contractor slightly more than $400,000 a year to represent half of the
county’s indigent defendants. The contractor was a private
practitioner who employed two associates and two secretaries, but no
paralegal or investigator. The contract required the contractor to
handle more than 5,000 cases each year. All of the contractor’s
expenses came out of the contract. To make a profit, the contractor
had to spend as little time as possible on each case. In 1998, the
contractor took fewer than 20 cases – less than 0.5 percent of the
combined felony and misdemeanor caseload – to trial.
One of the contractor’s associates was assigned only cases involving
misdemeanors. She carried a caseload of between 250 and 300 cases
per month. The associate had never tried a case before a jury. She
was expected to plead cases at the defendant’s first appearance in
court so she could move on to the next case. One afternoon, however,
the associate was given a felony case scheduled for trial the following
week. The case involved multiple felony and misdemeanor charges.
When she looked at the case file, the associate discovered that no
pretrial motions had been filed, no witness list had been compiled, no
expert witnesses had been endorsed, and no one had been subpoenaed.
In short, there had been no investigation of any kind into the case, and
she had no one to help her with the basics of her first jury trial.
The only material in the case file was five pages of police reports. In
these reports, she found evidence of a warrantless search, which
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indicated strong grounds for suppression. She told the judge she was
not ready to proceed and that a continuance was necessary to preserve
the defendant’s sixth amendment right to counsel. The continuance
was denied. The associate refused to move forward with the case.
The contractor’s other associate took over the case and pled the client
guilty to all charges. The associate who had asked for a continuance
was fired.
The Spangenberg Group, Contracting for Indigent Defense Service: A
Special Report, U.S. Department of Justice Office of Justice Programs,
April, 2000. The Commission independently verified the facts reported in
this account, and learned that the unidentified California County was, in fact,
Shasta County. The fired associate, Gabrielle Fitzmaurice-Kendrick,
subsequently filed a federal lawsuit against the contractor who fired her, and
received a substantial settlement. Fitzmaurice-Kendrick v. Suter, U.S.
District Court for E.D. Calif., 1999. In a deposition for that lawsuit, the
contractor boasted that he pled 70% of his clients guilty at the first court
appearance, after spending 30 seconds explaining the prosecutor’s “offer” to
the client. Deposition of Jack Suter. Shasta County subsequently
abandoned the use of flat-fee contracts, and established a public defender
office which currently enjoys an excellent reputation. As disturbing as the
scenario recounted in the federal report may be, little has been done in
California to prevent the recurrence of such scenarios.

9

While the State Bar of California Guidelines on Indigent Defense
Services Delivery Systems (2006) recommend that the cost of resources
such as investigators, qualified experts, paralegals, laboratory fees and
support technology “should not operate as a charge against the indigent
defense provider to such an extent that the net personal compensation to the
defender is diminished,” (pp. 30-31), flat fee contracts are still being
negotiated for defense services with no separate funding for investigators
and ancillary services.
The Commission heard the testimony of Len Tauman, who described the
bidding process in Placer County. Tauman was awarded the contract to
provide indigent defense services in Placer County in 1990, although he was
not the lowest bidder. He had eighteen years experience as a public
defender, and managed a conflicts office for ten years. His contract was
renewed in 1994 despite another lower bid, when a judge convinced the
Board of Supervisors that the top quality representation was worth the $1
million difference in the bids. The Board vote was 3-2. Tauman’s contract
was renewed in 1998 and 2002. In 2000, the defender budget in Placer
County was 41% of the District Attorney budget. By 2005, they were
operating at 27% of the District Attorney budget. Tauman submitted a bid

10

for $28 million, to increase funding up to 38% of the D.A. budget. 3 He was
undercut by a bid from John A. Barker & Associates, now operating as
Richard A. Ciummo & Associates. Ciummo now contracts with eight
California counties to provide defense services. 4 The Barker-Ciummo bid
was $16.8 million. The County accepted the lower bid. 5 Ciummo’s
operation has been described as the “Wal-Mart Business Model” for
providing defense services, “generating volume and cutting costs in ways his
government-based counterparts can’t and many private-sector competitors
won’t.” 6 Mr. Ciummo responds that he operates on a single-digit profit
margin, and substantial savings result from hiring attorneys on a contract
basis that does not include expensive benefit and retirement packages. 7
While his contracts with counties provide separate reimbursement for
interpreters and expert witness fees, there is no separate reimbursement for

3

The Commission has rejected a comparison of District Attorney and Public Defender budgets as a means
of measuring the adequacy of defense funding, since District Attorneys are required to fund broad
categories of activity that do not affect the work of public defenders, and the nature of these activities vary
significantly from one county to another. Comparisons across time within the same county, however, may
suggest changes that signal growing inequity.
4
In addition to Placer County, Barker/Ciummo has been the primary public defender for Madera County
since 1988 (Annual Caseload 8,000); for Amador County since 1994 (Annual caseload 1,000); for Modoc
County since 1999 (Annual caseload not reported); and for Calaveras County since 2001 (Annual caseload
1,100). They also provide contract defense representation for Napa County in dependency matters, for
Fresno County in conflict cases and juvenile dependency matters, and for Sonoma County in juvenile
dependency matters. See website, www.ciummolaw.com. The Ciummo website, under the headline,
“What Would Your County Do With Hundreds of Thousands of Dollars?”, boasts that “Every county we
have contracted with has saved substantial funds over their previous method of providing these services.
Additionally, our firm has an excellent record of containing cost increases.”
5
Wiener, Placer Swaps Legal Teams, Sacramento Bee, June 28, 2006.
6
Miller, California Defense Firm Borrows Wal-Mart Business Model, The Recorder, Dec. 26, 2007.
7
Id.

11

investigative services. 8 There is no comparative data available to track the
impact upon per attorney caseloads or trial rates in the counties that have
entered into flat-fee contracts for indigent defense. Mr. Ciummo did not
respond to Professor Benner’s survey for the Commission regarding any of
the counties with which he contracts. In two recent unpublished rulings of
the California Courts of Appeal, convictions have been reversed and/or
remanded because of a conflict of interest created by Ciummo’s
representation.9
The most direct way to deal with the potential conflicts that could be
presented by flat fee contracts for indigent defense services would be for the
legislature to mandate certain provisions be included in such contracts.
Contracting standards are already imposed by the state for county contracts
for public works. See California Public Contracts Code, Sections 2012020145. Minimal standards could be drawn from the Guidelines on Indigent
Defense Services Delivery Systems approved by the State Bar of California
in 2006. The State Bar Guidelines provide:
Indigent defense providers should enjoy parity, to the extent permitted
by law, on a relative scaled basis, with prosecutors in access to
8

See, e.g., Agreement with Richard A. Ciummo and Associates for Alternate Indigenet Defense Services,
June 6, 2007, available at
www.co.fresno.ca.us/portal/BBRs/Agreement%20with%20Richard%20A.%20Ciummo%20and%20Asso
ciates%20for%20Alter...
9
People v. Cousins, 2007 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 2844 (3rd App. Dist. April 9, 2007); In Re Manuel L.,
2004 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 8335 (5th App. Dist. Sept. 13, 2004).

12

technology, criminal history information, other criminal justice
databases such as those housing DNA information, legal research
tools, investigators and investigative tools, including a travel budget,
experts, paralegals, forensic labs, facilities, data processing and
exhibit creation capability. The cost of these resources should not
operate as a charge against the indigent defense provider to such an
extent that the net personal compensation to the defender is
diminished.
Id. at 30 (emphasis added). The Commission recommends that legislation
be enacted to provide that when Counties contract for indigent defense
services in criminal cases, the contract shall provide separate funding for
accessing technology and criminal justice databases to the extent those are
provided by law, legal research tools, travel expenses, forensic laboratory
fees and costs, data processing, modern exhibit capabilities, paralegals,
investigators and expert witnesses with appropriate qualifications and
experience.
Oversight of Defender Services.
Just regulating flat fee contracts, however, will not address problems of
underfunding and overload that can affect all defender offices, whether
contractual, assigned, or public defender types. Comparisons of defender

13

offices to measure the availability of resources is currently impossible,
because these offices are not required to collect data on the handling of cases
or report it to any state agency. California lacks any statewide authority to
monitor the adequacy of defender services, leaving it up to each county to
determine the level of funding to be provided. That level may be determined
without appropriate deference to minimum standards for delivery of defense
services.
Essential minimum standards for indigent defense delivery systems have
been drafted by a Commission of the State Bar of California. Guidelines on
Indigent Defense Services Delivery Systems (2006). The Guidelines provide
clear standards with respect to standards of representation, qualifications of
indigent defense providers, quality control, training, juvenile practice,
resources, compensation, ethics and management/leadership. The
Guidelines were drafted by a group of lawyers broadly representative of the
defense bar, including public defenders, contract defenders, appointed
lawyers and private practitioners. As previously noted, a survey by the
California Public Defenders Association found a high level of compliance

14

with the guidelines among institutional public defender offices. The
Guidelines themselves lack any direct enforcement mechanism. 10
As the State Bar Commission noted, workload standards vary
significantly from state to state, and the 1973 national standards formulated
by the National Advisory Commission on Criminal Standards and Goals 11
are of limited utility today. Because the organization of the courts and
assignment of deputies varies substantially from county to county, it is not
possible to devise numerical caseload standards on a statewide basis. There
is not even agreement, either in California or on a national basis, of how to
define a “case” for purposes of caseload standards. But it might be possible
to identify counties where the workloads are excessive, and broad numerical
standards could help to identify those counties where excessive workload
may be a problem, and calls for further investigation.
The Commission has considered whether the functions of establishing
statewide performance standards and monitoring the adequacy of defender
services at the county level should be assigned to an agency with statewide

10

The California Rules of Professional Conduct require a lawyer to act competently, and this includes the
duty to supervise the work of subordinate attorneys. Rule 3-110, California Rules of Professional Conduct,
and Discussion to Rule 3-110. In addition, Rule 1-120 provides “A member shall not knowingly assist in,
solicit, or induce any violation of these rules or the State Bar Act.” Thus, public defenders may risk State
Bar discipline if excessive caseloads are not addressed.
11

Standard 13.12 of the NAC Standards were: no more than 400 misdemeanors per attorney per year; or no
more than 150 felonies per attorney per year; or no more than 200 juvenile cases per attorney per year. The
associate attorney who was discharged in Shasta County was being assigned 3,600 misdemeanors per year.

15

jurisdiction. The composition and role of such an agency would have to be
carefully defined after full input from the affected defender service
providers. The Commission reviewed three alternatives which might be
employed to achieve this goal in California.

The alternatives are:

(1) The Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC). The AOC already
funds the appellate projects which provide counsel for indigent appeals.
Minimum standards to qualify for appointment as counsel for indigent
appeals and death penalty appeals and habeas claims have been established.
In 2002, the California Judicial Council also set minimum standards for
appointment to represent defendants at trial in death penalty cases.
Individual defender offices and contractors could be required to report to the
Administrative Office of the Courts, on an annual basis, the data necessary
to confirm their compliance with minimum standards for the hiring of
deputies, whether the caseloads assigned to them may be excessive, the
adequacy of training, compliance with ethical standards, independence,
quality control, investigative resources and compensation. The AOC could
then certify that particular counties are meeting minimal standards. The
AOC has accumulated broad experience in weighting caseloads in order to
assess court workloads. They would be uniquely equipped to measure

16

defense caseloads in California and identify counties that fall outside the
normal range.
The disadvantage of using the Administrative Office of the Courts,
however, is a potential conflict of interest and violation of the constitutional
separation of powers. The identification of a county as falling outside the
normal range could give rise to claims of ineffective assistance of counsel
that the courts would have to litigate. The intrusion of a judicial agency into
the operation of defender offices could cross the line into executive and
legislative functions.
(2) The California State Bar (CSB). The California State Bar Commission
on the Delivery of Legal Services to the Indigent Accused promulgated
voluntary guidelines for the delivery of indigent criminal defense services in
1990. In 2005, the Bar Board of Governors appointed a ten member
working group to collect information and public comment on the 1990
Guidelines and submit a revised set of guidelines by December of 2005.
The Guidelines on Indigent Defense Services Delivery Systems (2006)
discuss standards of representation and quality of services, with suggested
adaptations for each of the alternative delivery systems. While no effort was
made to establish numerical caseload standards, and no means of
enforcement was suggested, these tasks could be delegated to the California

17

State Bar by the legislature. Through appropriate legislation, the State Bar
could be designated as the repository of mandated reports from defender
organizations and contract defenders throughout the state, empowered to
establish minimum standards, and authorized to conduct investigations and
certify counties that are in compliance.
One difficulty of utilizing the State Bar, of course, is that the State Bar is
funded entirely by the dues paid by its member lawyers. It would be unfair
to tax the bar to fund a function that is the ultimate responsibility of the State
as a whole. Thus, any delegation of this task to the State Bar should be
accompanied by state appropriation of funds to finance this activity.
(3) Establishment of a new Indigent Defense Commission (IDC). In
recent years, a number of states have responded to the national crisis in
underfunding of indigent defense services by the creation of agencies to
establish statewide standards and oversight of defense services. In 2001,
Texas enacted landmark legislation, known as the Texas Fair Defense Act.
It provides for statewide standards and oversight of defense services through
a new Texas Task Force on Indigent Defense, and provides partial state
funding of defense services for the first time ever.
Just as in California, Texas counties have the primary responsibility
for funding and organizing indigent defense services. Counties can opt to
18

use a court-appointed counsel, public defender or contract counsel system to
provide indigent defense services, or they can use some combination of
these models. Out of the state's 254 counties, however, only seven have a
public defender office. The Texas Task Force on Indigent Defense provides
state formula grants to counties, whose costs increased from the reforms put
in place by the Texas Fair Defense Act. In addition, the Task Force develops
minimum standards of quality indigent defense services; monitors and
assists counties in meeting those standards; and works to bring consistency,
quality control and accountability to indigent defense practices in Texas. See
http://www.courts.state.tx.us/tfid/.
In 2004, Virginia enacted legislation creating the new Virginia Indigent
Defense Commission, which began overseeing both assigned counsel and
public defender programs throughout the state in July, 2005. Among its
other duties, the Virginia IDC is charged with settting caseload limits and
establishing and enforcing qualification and performance standards for
indigent defense representation.
Statewide systems have also operated successfully for many years in
Massachusetts and Indiana. In Massachusetts, a single, independent
organization, known as the Committee for Public Counsel Services, oversees
both public defenders and 2,000 private attorneys statewide, and has adopted
19

training and performance standards as well as caseload limits. Indiana has a
state commission, known as the Indiana Public Defender Commission,
which is authorized by statute to reimburse counties 40% of their
expenditures in felony and juvenile cases, provided the counties create an
independent board to oversee defense services and comply with the
commission’s caseload, qualification, and other standards for representation.
Currently, 53 of the state’s 92 counties have adopted the commission’s
standards and established independent boards. See Gideon’s Broken
Promise: America’s Continuing Quest for Equal Justice (American Bar
Assoc. 2004).
The difficulty with assigning this task to a new independent agency is the
costs of the creation of a new bureaucracy, and its tendency to grow. The
ideal system would assign both the function of collecting data (preferably
though statutorily mandated reporting from defense contractors and public
defenders) to establish performance standards, and the function of
identifying counties which are in compliance, to the same entity.
Conceivably, however, those functions could be separated. The
Administrative Office of the Courts or the State Bar, for example, could be
charged with collecting the data needed to propound statewide caseload and
performance standards, and formulating those standards. The subsequent

20

identification of noncompliance with those standards could then be
delegated to a newly created IDC.
The Commission was unable to agree upon either the need for oversight
or the identification of the appropriate oversight entity. Strong opposition
was registered by public defenders who are concerned that the designation of
an oversight agency could be counterproductive. Some public defenders
have expressed concern that, rather than elevating the quality of indigent
defense services in California, a process of identifying providers who are in
compliance with minimum standards will create a race for the bottom.
Counties that currently provide adequate funding for defense services could
seek to cut funding to the level that meets minimal standards for compliance.
In today’s budget climate, this is a realistic cause for concern.
The Commission recommends that the California State Bar reconvene
its Commission on the Delivery of Legal Services to the Indigent Accused to
resolve the issues of how adequate funding of defense services in California
can be achieved.

21

RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE COMMISSION
1. The Commission recommends that legislation be enacted to provide
that when Counties contract for indigent defense services in criminal
cases, the contract shall provide separate funding for accessing
technology and criminal justice databases to the extent those are
provided by law, legal research tools, travel expenses, forensic
laboratory fees and costs, data processing, modern exhibit capabilities,
paralegals, investigators and expert witnesses with appropriate
qualifications and experience. Full time defense counsel should be
compensated at rates equivalent to comparable prosecutors.

2. The Commission recommends that the California State Bar
reconvene its Commission on the Delivery of Legal Services to the
Indigent Accused to make recommendations regarding the adequacy of
funding for defense services which meet acceptable standards of
competent representation.

22

Respectfully submitted,
California Commission on the Fair Administration of Justice:
John K. Van de Kamp, Chair
Jon Streeter, Vice Chair
Diane Bellas, Alameda County Public Defender
Harold O. Boscovich, Jr., Danville
Chief William Bratton, Los Angeles Police Department (Gerald Chaleff)
Jerry Brown, California Attorney General (Janet Gaard)
Ron Cottingham, Peace Officers Research Association of California
Glen Craig, Sacramento
Chief Pete Dunbar, Pleasant Hill Police Department
Jim Fox, San Mateo County District Attorney
Rabbi Allen Freehling, Los Angeles
Michael Hersek, California State Public Defender
Sheriff Curtis Hill, San Benito County
Prof. Bill Hing, University of California at Davis
Michael P. Judge, Los Angeles County Public Defender
George Kennedy, Santa Clara County District Attorney
Michael Laurence, Habeas Corpus Resource Center
Alejandro Mayorkas, Los Angeles
Judge John Moulds, Sacramento
Prof. Cookie Ridolfi, Santa Clara University School of Law
Douglas Ring, Santa Monica
Greg Totten, Ventura County District Attorney
Gerald F. Uelmen, Executive Director
Chris Boscia, Executive Assistant
California Commission on the Fair Administration of Justice
900 Lafayette St., Suite 608, Santa Clara, California 95050
Telephone 408-554-5002; FAX 408-554-5026
Website: http://www.ccfaj.org.

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