With the passage of HB 504 in early 2016, the Idaho Public Defense Commission (PDC) is tasked with creating standards to guide the work of defending attorneys across the state and to ensure constitutional levels of public defense service to their indigent clients.
The PDC is currently participating in its second round of public rule creation (negotiated rulemaking) and are seeking comments from the public about their draft standards pertaining to investigations, use of experts, parity in investigators, experts, and testing resources between public defenders and prosecutors, and qualifications for public defenders who work on death penalty cases. The rules also include a new enforcement standard that outlines how the Commission will hold counties accountable to meeting the standards and other rules. The PDC will be hosting open forums throughout the month of October 2017 to meet with the public and receive formal feedback about their draft rules for defending attorneys.

The ACLU encourages all interested parties in attending the open forums and providing comment. If you’re interested in attending these forums and would like information on meeting times and ACLU talking points on the issue, review our 2017 Public Defense Commission Rules guide here. 

To learn more about the Idaho Public Defense Commission, visit here.