29-3927. Commission; duties.

(1) With respect to its duties under section 29-3923, the commission shall:

(a) Adopt and promulgate rules and regulations for its organization and internal management and rules and regulations governing the exercise of its powers and the fulfillment of its purpose;

(b) Appoint and abolish such advisory committees as may be necessary for the performance of its functions and delegate appropriate powers and duties to them;

(c) Accept and administer loans, grants, and donations from the United States and its agencies, the State of Nebraska and its agencies, and other sources, public and private, for carrying out the functions of the commission;

(d) Enter into contracts, leases, and agreements necessary, convenient, or desirable for carrying out its purposes and the powers granted under this section with agencies of state or local government, corporations, or persons;

(e) Acquire, hold, and dispose of personal property in the exercise of its powers;

(f) Provide legal services to indigent persons through the divisions in section 29-3930; and

(g) Adopt guidelines and standards for county indigent defense systems, including, but not limited to, standards relating to the following: The use and expenditure of funds appropriated by the Legislature to reimburse counties which qualify for reimbursement; attorney eligibility and qualifications for court appointments; compensation rates for salaried public defenders, contracting attorneys, and court-appointed attorneys and overall funding of the indigent defense system; maximum caseloads for all types of systems; systems administration, including rules for appointing counsel, awarding defense contracts, and reimbursing defense expenses; conflicts of interest; continuing legal education and training; and availability of supportive services and expert witnesses.

(2) The standards adopted by the commission under subdivision (1)(g) of this section are intended to be used as a guide for the proper methods of establishing and operating indigent defense systems. The standards are not intended to be used as criteria for the judicial evaluation of alleged misconduct of defense counsel to determine the validity of a conviction. They may or may not be relevant in such judicial evaluation, depending upon all the circumstances.

(3) With respect to its duties related to the provision of civil legal services to eligible low-income persons, the commission shall have such powers and duties as described in sections 25-3001 to 25-3004.

(4) The commission may adopt and promulgate rules and regulations governing the Legal Education for Public Service and Rural Practice Loan Repayment Assistance Act which are recommended by the Legal Education for Public Service and Rural Practice Loan Repayment Assistance Board pursuant to the act. The commission shall have the powers and duties provided in the act.

Source:Laws 1995, LB 646, § 9; Laws 1997, LB 729, § 8; Laws 2001, LB 335, § 4; Laws 2002, LB 876, § 66; Laws 2008, LB1014, § 28; Laws 2009, LB154, § 3; Laws 2014, LB907, § 10.

Cross References