A plan to increase the budget for the Los Angeles County’s Public Defender’s Office to assist with its backlog of cases due to COVID-19 was approved Tuesday by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors.

The motion by Supervisor Holly J. Mitchell calls on the county CEO Fesia Davenport to work with the public defender and director of personnel to come up with a plan for meeting the budget requests for the Public Defender’s Office for the 2021-22 fiscal year.

“Our public defense is one of the most important services that the county provides to vulnerable and low-income communities,” Mitchell said.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has created a backlog of cases that threatens the constitutional right to due process for millions of residents. I’m proud that the board has voted in support of properly resourcing our public defense system to ensure that residents who rely on indigent defense services have legal representation and are connected to appropriate alternatives to incarceration.”

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