S.1377: EQUAL Defense Act of 2019
The EQUAL Defense Act (S. 1377) would establish a new $250 million grant program to fund public defense by creating workload limits for full-time public defenders, instituting pay parity between public defenders and prosecutors, and collecting annual data on public defender workloads. The bill would also authorize $5 million for government organizations and nonprofits to provide training for public defenders and reauthorize the John R. Justice Student Loan Repayment Program for prosecutors and public defenders. This would be triple the overall authorization amount from $25 million to $75 million for three years.
H.R. 2868 is the house companion bill.