Of Counsel

Legal Notes on Georgia and The South

Today’s Nichols/GPDSC Update

Posted by Maggie on December 3, 2007

The Daily Report has info on the Public Defender budget crunch and the Supreme Court’s Nichols opinion of last week.

More details on the GPDSC funding decisions of last week. They are funding themselves with money budgeted for June 2008 salaries. That means if they don’t get bailed out by the legislature before June, there could be big problems. Other possible future measures for the short-term include “rolling furloughs” of employees and stopping payment for conflict attorneys and experts. Just imagine how thrilled all the judges are going to be when their attorneys aren’t present due to a forced furlough. Both these measures seem designed to make life miserable all over the state for the criminal justice system. I can understand why they’re making the big gamble they are. Let’s just hope the bail out is on the horizon.

As for Nichols, it seems that some people think Justice Sears’ directive to the judge and counsel to all sit down together to try and expeditiously resolve the case is more of a rebuke than I did. The Court said the case wasn’t bad enough for them to be able to get involved, though some are thinking this means the court is threatening to get involved. I don’t really see it, but I may be reading my own opinion into it just as they are.

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