Public Defenders Need Dependable Revenue

The independent evaluation of the Orleans Public Defenders released last week applauds many of our office's best-practices, while also providing recommendations to improve the management of the service restriction that was caused by insufficient funding for public defense.

OPD takes seriously the report findings and, with Louisiana Public Defender Board, is already at work to make improvements ensuring indigent defendants in Orleans Parish are represented by an office with the resources to effectively provide the constitutional right to counsel.

The stability of public defense services is directly related to the stability of funding. We depend on monthly remittances from almost a dozen different sources and have absolutely no fund balance to cover any interruption in those remittances. As a result, there is an omnipresent risk of service restriction. No amount of preparation or communication can address this issue until OPD enjoys stable, sufficient funding and is relieved of its month-by-month financial existence.

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Orleans Public Defenders
2601 Tulane Avenue
Suite 700
New Orleans, LA 70119
    Tel: (504) 821-8101
    Fax: (504) 821-5285