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HB 5303 — Counsel in Proceedings for Executive Clemency

by Justice Appropriations Subcommittee and Rep. McBurney (SB 2508 by Appropriations Committee)

This summary is provided for information only and does not represent the opinion of any Senator, Senate Officer, or Senate Office.

Prepared by: Appropriations Committee (AP)

The bill:

  • Shifts the responsibility for appointing counsel to represent indigent clients in capital clemency cases from the trial court to the Board of Executive Clemency and requires the board to appoint a private attorney, rather than a State-employed attorney, as counsel. The Timely Justice Act that was enacted in the 2013 session requires completion of the executive clemency process before the Governor issues a warrant for execution.
  • Raises the maximum amount of compensation that can be paid to an appointed attorney from $1,000 to $10,000, with payment made from General Revenue funds budgeted to the Parole Commission.
  • Provides that the statute permitting appointment of counsel does not create a right to counsel.

If approved by the Governor, these provisions take effect July 1, 2014.

Vote: Senate 40-0; House 106-8