Upstate Quality Improvement and Caseload Reduction - Second RFP

Background

Providers of indigent legal services in New York face multiple challenges in providing effective representation to clients. The most prominent of these challenges among institutionalized providers (e.g., public defender offices, legal aid societies and conflict defender offices) is the lack of sufficient personnel to handle assigned caseloads. In assigned counsel programs, providers may face other equally problematic obstacles such as difficulties in overseeing the quality of representation to which clients are legally entitled. While the systemic problems may be different, the fundamental problem in all programs is the same: resource constraints and other obstacles prevent attorneys and programs from providing optimal representation.

On August 22, 2013, the Office of Indigent Legal Services released its first competitive Upstate Quality Improvement and Caseload Reduction Request for Proposal (RFP), which invited each upstate county in New York to apply for funding to either reduce excessive institutional defender caseloads, or to improve the quality of its mandated legal representation by other means.

On July 27, 2017, the Office of Indigent Legal Services released its Second Upstate Quality Improvement and Caseload Reduction RFP. The purpose of this grant is to continue and improve effective programs funded under the Office’s first Upstate Quality Improvement and Caseload Reduction grant and fund projects or programs that demonstrate new approaches to a certain problem, in this case, counties experiencing challenges providing quality indigent legal services.