My opponent has spoken of a particular Indiana extradition case. He claims that County taxpayers are on the hook for “thousands” in extradition costs. The truth is, the cost of the extradition was $633.60. The case was withdrawn when the defendant established a valid legal defense.
When it comes to fiscal responsibility, my opponent should look to his own house.
According to mckeancounty.org:
In 2013, the year before my opponent became the public defender, the annual budget for that office was $349,870.00. In 2019, its proposed budget is $520,786.00 – a 48.85% increase of $170,916.00 .
Further, when my opponent claims a conflict within his office, the public is required to pay for court-appointed lawyers to represent defendants . That cost to the county taxpayers in 2013 was $126,475. In 2018, the cost to the taxpayers increased to $179,060 – a 42% increase.
From 2013 through 2018, the public defender’s budget increased 46%. During the same time, the District Attorney’s budget went up a mere 7%. It should be remembered that the District Attorney’s office prosecutes nearly all crimes in the County. The public defender’s office, which has the same number of attorneys, defends only a fraction of those cases.