C2J Open Forum

SAA grants to public defense agencies

  • 1.  SAA grants to public defense agencies

    Posted 10-15-2018 14:15
    I have been working on behalf of NCJA with the National Legal Aid and Defender Associations.  They asked me to find some examples of JAG funds going to public defender agencies.  If your agency gives any such grants, could you provide me with some basic information about the grant(s), grantee, nature of grant project, date, amount. etc? Thanks.

    Jack Cutrone
    Senior Policy Adviser
    National Criminal Justice Association

  • 2.  RE: SAA grants to public defense agencies

    Posted 10-16-2018 10:08


    We do fund a handful of indigent defense programs with our Byrne/JAG formula award.  Defense programs receiving Byrne JAG funding in New York State support projects to improve the defense of indigent special population groups (drug or alcohol addicted, persons with mental health issues, sex offenders, etc.) or those indigent defendants processed through specialty courts (Drug, Domestic Violence, Sex Offender, etc.), or to enhance early defense intervention strategies and representation during initial court proceedings.  Below is a list of our most recent awards.  New York is not in receipt of the FY 2017 or FY 2018 funds due to litigation at the federal level.

    Legal Aid Bureau of Buffalo, Inc. BJ1563730 C637330 $184,860.00 $184,860.00 $0.00 10/1/2016-6/30/2017
    Frank H. Hiscock Legal Aid Society BJ15637331 T637331 $8,460.00 $8,460.00 $0.00 7/1/2016-6/30/2017
    Onondaga County (Bar Association) BJ15637332 C637332 $72,990.00 $72,990.00 $0.00 7/1/2016-6/30/2017
    Monroe County (Public Defender) BJ15637334 C637334 $103,860.00 $103,860.00 $0.00 7/1/2016-6/30/2017
    Suffolk County (Legal Aid Society of Suffolk County, Inc.) BJ15637336 T637336 $48,060.00 $46,827.60 $1,232.40 7/1/2016-6/30/2017
    Nassau County (Legal Aid Society) BJ15637335 C637335 $83,160.00 $83,160.00 $0.00 7/1/2016-6/30/2017
    Legal Aid Society, The BJ15637333/BJ12637333 C637333 $432,320.00 $31,000.00 $463,320.00 $0.00 7/1/2016-6/30/2017

    Denise Crates
    Deputy Director, Federal Programs
    NYS Division of Criminal Justice Services

  • 3.  RE: SAA grants to public defense agencies

    Posted 10-17-2018 16:33

    I managed the Byrne JAG program for Arkansas for 7 years, and we funded a public defender for the Veteran's Court in Pulaski County.  It was a huge success.  It was eye opening to see the number of Veterans who are in the system because they are homeless or unemployed or have issues related to mental health.  The program used a very small amount of funds but had huge returns on the lives impacted.   I would like to see Byrne Jag fund more public defender projects.  Our judicial system requires all the pieces to be fully functional.  The Public Defender system is one of the MOST underfunded parts of that system.  My two cents. 


    Oh yes, I continued my membership in NCJA with a personal membership after I left Byrne Jag and I encourage every law enforcement officer, prosecutor and public defender who I encounter to do that also.  The information that is provided through the Association is invaluable.


    Diana K. Wilson

    Program Planner/Manager

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