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County commissioners to consider public defender
The Hays County Commissioners will vote on the long-awaited resolution directing the grant application for holistic public defense to be submitted. If approved, the application would be submitted to the Texas Indigent Defense Commission (TIDC) for the Hays County Holistic Public Defense Office and Managed Assigned Counsel Program in the amount of $1,085,325.
This grant is intended to fund the first year of the proposed Holistic Public Defender Office and Managed Assigned Counsel Program.
From the grant application, the program calls for, “Sound hiring and state-of-the-art training; supportive supervision and oversight of attorneys; available investigation and social work services; ongoing data review and evaluation; and sustainable solutions to long-standing issues will generate improved case outcomes for clients and promote the smooth administration of the county's criminal justice system.”
The standard multi-year improvement grant fund will pay up to 80% of total project costs in the first year; 60% in the second year; 40% in the third year; and 20% in the fourth year. The total project cost is $2.256 million and requires a county matching of $451K.
The commissioners will also authorize the submission of a renewal grant application to the TIDC for the Indigent Defense Coordinator grant project in the amount of $77,292, with the county matching up to 60%.
The Indigent Defense Coordinator position has been funded after the original grant submission was approved by the commissioners court in August of 2019. The position assists with the county's appointment process and provides documentation that the count is in compliance with the Fair Defense Act.
There will also be a discussion and possible action to form a citizens advisory commission on redistricting.
The Hays County Commissioners Court will meet May 4 at 9 a.m. at the Hays County Courthouse in Room 301 in San Marcos.
Anyone wishing to participate in public comment can submit a public participation/witness form to the county clerk prior to the 9 a.m. Tuesday.