Raises for Prosecutors and Defenders, or More Pork for Other Projects?
Western Justice points out that the John R. Justice Prosecutors and Defenders Incentive Act of 2008 has been signed into law. I’m sure I’ve missed hoopla about this elsewhere, since there was lots of hoopla about it last May. Now that I have more than six readers, I’ll ask again the two multiple-choice questions that I asked then:
1. The people who decide where the money is spent in your jurisdiction know that the federal government is going to give every public defender a $12,000 annual subsidy. Do they a) raise defenders’ salaries nonetheless; b) keep defenders’ salaries where they are; or c) lower defenders’ salaries by $11,999, figuring that defenders were paid enough before and should be happy with a net $1 raise? 2. Having cut defenders’ salaries by $11,999, do the people who decide where public money is spent in your jurisdiction use it a) to feed the hungry and house the homeless; b) on hookers and crack for the monthly county commissioners’ retreat; or c) to buy AR-15s for the SWAT team and build a new jail, in order to prove their tough-on-crime credentials? Almost anywhere in America, the correct answers are “c” and “c.” If you live in one of the exceptions, I’d love to know where it is.
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