(a) On or before May 1 of each year, each active public defender corporation shall submit to the executive director and the commission a funding application and a proposed budget for the ensuing fiscal year. The accounting and auditing division shall review all funding applications and prepare recommendations for an operating plan and annual budget for each public defender corporation. The executive director shall review the funding applications and the accounting and auditing recommendations and shall, in consultation with the board of directors of each public defender corporation, prepare a plan for providing legal services, execute a funding contract for the fiscal year and commit funds for that purpose.
(b) Upon final approval of a funding application by the executive director, the approved budget shall be set forth in an approval notice. The total cost to the agency shall not exceed the amount set forth in the approval notice and the agency shall not be obligated to reimburse the recipient for costs incurred in excess of the amount unless and until a program modification has been approved in accordance with the provisions of this article. At the discretion of the executive director, when caseloads increase or unusual expenses occur, funding contracts may be amended during a fiscal year if necessary to provide cost effective representation.
(c) Funding of public defender corporations or other programs or entities providing legal representation under the provisions of this article shall be by annual grants disbursed in such periodic allotments as the executive director shall deem appropriate.
(d) All recipients of funding under this article shall maintain such records as required by the executive director.