Sources of Revenue:

General Fund

Legislation creates:

A New Program

Fiscal Note Summary

Effect this measure will have on costs and revenues of state government.

    This bill requires the Executive Director of West Virgina Public Defender Services to establish a new program to assume full managerial duties over twenty-three(23) existing public defender offices throughout West Virgina. While these offices are currently funded by WVPDS, they are currently managed and controlled on a day-to-day basis by individual Chief Defenders and Boards of Directors.
    The bill requires WVPDS to monitor, manage and administer the day-to-day operation of each of these offices. Current staffing within WVPDS is entirely inadequate to accomplish this task. To fulfill the purpose of this bill, WVPDS would require a sizable increase in staff with all associated costs (salaries, equipment, travel, etc).
    In addition, since WVPDS is a state agency, acquiring supervisory control over all PD corporation employess (approximately 225 FTE's) would potentially require such employees to be re-classified as state employees.

Fiscal Note Detail

Effect of Proposal Fiscal Year
Fiscal Year
(Upon Full
1. Estmated Total Cost 0 3,997,110 3,997,110
Personal Services 0 3,997,110 3,997,110
Current Expenses 0 0 0
Repairs and Alterations 0 0 0
Assets 0 0 0
Other 0 0 0
2. Estimated Total Revenues 0 0 0

Explanation of above estimates (including long-range effect):

    The primary impact upon WVPDS of the bill would be the necessity of substantial staff increases to meet the bill's stated function. Tasks currently administered by the public defender office staff and their voluntary Board of Directors (including bookkeeping,administrative, purchasing, and all other supervisory tasks) would be assumed by WVPDS at the state level.
    Staff levels at WVPDS would be required to increase by at least 36 FTE's in order to administer the offices on a day-to-day basis. The additional positions would include at least one (1) attorney supervisor and one(1) administrative staffer for each of the eighteen (18) judicial circuits currently served by public defender offices. This note does NOT include costs to those offices for additional office space and other associated costs.
    The new positions would increase incrementally should additional public defender offices be activated in succeeeding fiscal years.


    As a procedural matter, please note that the (acting) Executive Director did not receive this fiscal note request until January 23, 2012. I am not on the mailing list for such requests.
    Because the language of the bill imposes a mandatory duty on the Executive Director of WVPDS to create and administer a new program, this fiscal note was prepared under the assumption that the plain language of the bill requires the Director to assume full operational control over the current operating public defender offices. We have therefore attempted to provide the best estimate as to the total costs of such a new program.

    Person submitting Fiscal Note: Russell S. Cook
    Email Address: