2016 Arkansas Code
Title 16 - Practice, Procedure, and Courts
Subtitle 6 - Criminal Procedure Generally
Chapter 87 - Public Defenders
Subchapter 2 - -- Arkansas Public Defender Commission
§ 16-87-204. Executive director

AR Code ยง 16-87-204 (2016) What's This?

(a) (1) The commission shall appoint an executive director who shall be licensed to practice law in the State of Arkansas, licensed to practice law for at least four (4) years prior to the effective date of the appointment, and experienced in the practice of criminal law, including the defense of capital cases.

(2) The commission may remove the executive director only for just cause, which includes permanent physical or mental disability which seriously interferes with the performance of duties, willful misconduct in office, willful and persistent failure to perform the duties of public defender, habitual intemperance, or conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice.

(b) The executive director shall have the following powers and duties:

(1) To supervise the operations of the Capital, Conflicts, and Appellate Office, and the Trial Public Defender Office;

(2) To maintain records of the operation of the public defender system, including, but not limited to, the following:

(A) Detailed descriptions of the organization of each public defender's office;

(B) The caseload of each public defender's office, including cases assigned to private attorneys;

(C) Budgets and actual expenditures of the commission and each public defender's office;

(D) Reassignment of cases from one (1) public defender to another public defender in an adjacent area; and

(E) Assignment of cases to private attorneys;

(3) To present to the commission within ninety (90) days after the end of the fiscal year an annual report on the operation of the public defender system which shall include:

(A) An accounting of all funds received and disbursed;

(B) An evaluation of the cost-effectiveness of the public defender system; and

(C) Recommendations for improvement;

(4) To prepare a budget for the operations of the commission;

(5) To allocate and disburse funds appropriated for the operations of the commission and the public defender system pursuant to guidelines established by the commission;

(6) To allocate public defender, investigator, and secretary positions to the office of the public defender in each county or judicial district, based upon a formula established by the commission;

(7) To establish procedures for evaluating the performance of public defenders and private attorneys participating in the public defender system, pursuant to policies and standards developed by the commission;

(8) To appear before and provide assistance to the General Assembly and other relevant bodies regarding matters related to the public defender system;

(9) To convene conferences and training seminars related to the public defender system;

(10) To compile and disseminate statutes, court opinions, and other information to public defenders and private attorneys participating in the public defender system;

(11) To maintain a brief bank for use in connection with appeals;

(12) To perform other duties related to the administration of the public defender system as the commission may direct; and

(13) (A) To supervise the operation of the Juvenile Ombudsman Division of the Arkansas Public Defender Commission; and

(B) To maintain records of such operation, including, but not limited to:

(i) The preparation of a budget and record of actual expenditures;

(ii) The assignment of cases and caseload of each ombudsman;

(iii) An evaluation of the performance of each ombudsman; and

(iv) A detailed description of the organization of each office of the division.

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