Louisiana Supreme Court - 400 Royal St., New Orleans, LA 70130 | Tel: 504-310-2300 Hon. Bernette J. Johnson. Chief Justice.  John Tarlton Olivier., Clerk of Court.  Sandra A. Vujnovich. Judicial Administrator
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 Price of Justice Grant Information

PUBLIC COMMENT HEARING AND WRITTEN COMMENT PERIOD
FOR REPORTS FROM THE PRICE OF JUSTICE GRANT ADVISORY COMMITTEE

The Louisiana Supreme Court is hosting a public comment hearing and written comment period to receive feedback on the work to date of the Price of Justice Advisory Committee. The Advisory Committee was established in conjunction with the Price of Justice: Rethinking the Consequences of Justice Fines and Fees grant that was awarded to the Louisiana Supreme Court by the U.S. Department of Justice and focuses on the subject of criminal court costs and fees. Louisiana was one of five states to receive grant funding.


The public comment hearing will be held on Thursday, April 4, 2019, from 10 am – 12 noon at the Louisiana Supreme Court, located at 400 Royal Street in New Orleans. Additional information on the written comment period may be found below.


The mission of the Advisory Committee is to develop recommendations for policy and action to achieve a more transparent, accountable, and fair system of assessing, collecting, and distributing legal financial obligations. In accordance with the grant, the Advisory Committee is developing Louisiana-specific best practices to assess and collect criminal court costs and to also develop resources to support these best practices, specifically considering a defendant’s ability to pay and alternatives to incarceration.


The Advisory Committee has been meeting over the last year and has divided into four working groups or subcommittees. Each of the four subcommittees has prepared a draft report of its findings and recommendations. The Advisory Committee is holding this public comment hearing and written comment period to receive feedback on the substance and recommendations of the draft reports. Draft Reports are available for review by selecting the links below:

Draft Reports:

  1. Draft Report of the Addressing Barriers to Payments Subcommittee (pdf)
  2. Draft Report of the Technological Solutions Subcommittee (pdf)
  3. Draft Report of the Alternatives to Legal Financial Obligations and Incarceration Subcommittee (pdf)
  4. Draft Report of the Acceptable Models for Funding the State Judicial System (pdf)


The Committee is chaired by Louisiana Supreme Court Chief Justice Bernette Joshua Johnson and Orleans Parish Criminal District Court Judge Paul Bonin, and includes judges, court administrators, clerks, sheriffs, district attorneys, citizens, indigent defenders, and representatives of public interest groups. The Advisory Committee will also make policy recommendations for the future, especially in light of recent changes in the laws that affect the assessment of criminal court costs.


Interested parties are welcome to provide feedback about the reports and recommendations either in person at the public comment hearing on Thursday, April 4, 2019 at 10 a.m. at the Louisiana Supreme Court, or by providing written comment by email or US mail no later than April 28, 2019. Written comments may be sent via email to priceofjustice@lasc.org or mailed to Price of Justice, c/o Supreme Court Judicial Administrator, 400 Royal St., Suite 1190, New Orleans, LA 70130. The Advisory Committee members will review and consider all comments received as they develop final recommendations to the Court, the Legislature, and other bodies.


The Supreme Court welcomes individuals with disabilities or those needing interpreters and has committed to making court employment opportunities, programs and services accessible to all persons. Any person wishing to request an accommodation in order to participate in the public comment meeting should utilize the ADA Accommodations Request Form, if possible. The form is available at: http://www.lasc.org/employment/ada_statement.asp.

Requests for accommodation should be directed to the following individual through the sources listed below or by using the Louisiana Relay Center TDD/TTY 1-800-846-5277, voice 1-800-947-5277.

Lauren McHugh Rocha, ADA Ombudsman
Deputy Judicial Administrator/General Counsel
Louisiana Supreme Court
Office of the Judicial Administrator
400 Royal Street, Suite 1190
New Orleans, LA 70130
Telephone: (504) 310-2550; Fax: (504) 310-2587
 E-mail: lrocha@lasc.org


Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 requires courts to take reasonable steps to provide meaningful access to limited English proficient individuals in court operations. If you are interested in attending the public comment hearing but, due to your national origin, have a limited ability to understand English, please contact Julia Spear at (504) 310-2629 or jspear@lasc.org so that we may arrange to have an interpreter present.

This project was supported by Grant No. 2016-ZB-BX-008, awarded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance. The Bureau of Justice Assistance is a component of the Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs, which also includes the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the National Institute of Justice, the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, the Office for Victims of Crime, and the SMART Office. Points of view or opinions in this document are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice or the Louisiana Supreme Court.

 

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