County considers ways to cut legal costs for indigent defendants

By Debra J. Groom

Oswego County officials and the county’s bar association are trying to find a way to cut costs in the Oswego County Assigned Counsel office.

At the Aug. 26 meeting of the county legislature’s Government, Courts and Consumer Affairs committee, legislators heard that the Oswego County Bar Association has submitted a proposal with changes in the assigned counsel office that could save the county about $200,000 a year.

Assigned counsel office spending began to escalate about 2009 when the office began handling more cases and some very high-profile cases.

From 2008 to 2009, the number of cases went up from 2,018 to 2,208 and the spending went from $1,065,047 in 2008 to $1,552,021 in 2009.

For the rest of this story, pick up the Sept. 5 edition of The Valley News. Call 598-6397 to subscribe.

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