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ORDINANCE 1998-136 ORDINANCE 9s- 13 ORDINANCE AMENDING ORDINANCE 95 -36 ENTITLED, "REVISED GENERAL ORDINANCES, TOWNSHIP OF CHERRY HILL ", ARTICLE XXIII, FEES; SECTION 2- 44.3(b) (APPLICATION FEE FOR THE SERVICES OF THE PUBLIC DEFENDER) WHEREAS, the State Legislature has amended and supplemented State Statue N.J.S. 2B:24 -1 et. seq. which pertains to Municipal Public Defenders, and WHEREAS, The Township of Cherry Hill needs to amend the Revised General Ordinances of Cherry Hill to bring their Ordinance within conformance of the revised State Law (P.L. 1997, Ch. 256) NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT ORDAINED, by the Township Council of the Township of Cherry Hill, County of Camden and State of New Jersey that Ordinance 95 -36, entitled the Revised General Ordinances, Township of Cherry Hill," Article XXIH, FEE; Section 2- 44.3(b) be amended as follows: SECTION 1. ?fib) Shall read as follows: read as follows' 2- 44.3(b) The Court Administrator shall charge a fee of two hundred dollars ($200.00) per application for a Public Defender. The fee may be waived by the Judges of the Municipal Court, in their discretion, in whole or in part, upon a clear and convincing showing by the applicant that the application fee represents an unreasonable burden on the person seeking representation and upon showing of absolute indigency without the ability to pay the application fee. Need shall be measured according to N.J.S.A. 2A:158A -14 and by guidelines promulgated by the New Jersey Supreme Court. (1) Payments The Municipal Court may permit a person to pay the application fee over a specific period of time not to exceed four (4) months. (2) Provisional referral In the event that a determination of eligibility cannot be made before the time when the first services are to be rendered, or if an initial determination is found to be erroneous, the Municipal Court shall refer the defendant to the Municipal Public Defender provisionally, and if subsequently it is determined that the defendant is ineligible, the Municipal Court shall inform the defendant, and the defendant shall be obliged to engage his own counsel and to reimburse the Municipality for the cost of the services rendered at that time. (3) Investigation of Financial Status The Municipal Court shall make an investigation of the financial status of each defendant seeking representation and shall have the authority to require a defendant to execute and deliver written requests or authorizations required under applicable - law to provide the court with access to records of public or private sources, otherwise confidential, as may be of aid in evaluating eligibility. As provided by law, the Court is authorized to obtain information from any public record office of the State or of any subdivision or agency thereof on request and without payment of the fees ordinarily required by law. (4) Financial Obligation of Parents or Guardians. As provided by P.L. 1997, ch. 256, whenever a person entitled to representation by a Municipal Public Defender pursuant to this act, is under the age of 18 years, the eligibility for services shall be determined on the basis of the financial circumstances of the individual and the financial circumstances of the individual's parents or legal guardians. (5) Reimbursement to the Township, As provided by P.L. 1997, ch. 256, if the defendant has or reasonably expects to have means to meet some part, though not all, of the cost of the services rendered, the defendant shall be required to reimburse the Township and the Township shall have a lien on any property to which the defendant shall have or acquire an interest for an amount equal to the reasonable value of the services rendered to a defendant pursuant to this act as calculated at the same rate as the Office of the Public Defender bills clients at that time. (6) Collection and Settlement of Claims. The municipal attorney may do all things necessary to collect any money due to the Township by way of reimbursement for services rendered by a Municipal Public Defender. The municipal attorney may enter into arrangements with any State or County agency to handle collections on a cost basis. The municipal attorney shall have all the remedies and proceedings available for collection which are available for or upon the recovery of a judgment in a civil action and shall also be permitted to collect counsel.fees and costs from the defendant. The municipal attorney is authorized to compromise and settle any claim for services performed whenever the financial circumstances of the person receiving the services are such that, in the judgment of the municipal attorney, the best interest of the Township will be served by compromise and settlement. SECTION 2. 2- 44.3(c) Shall read as follows: 2- 44.3(c) The application fee shall be used to help defray the cost of hiring a Public Defender and in the administrative cost of the Municipal Court of the Township of Cherry Hill including, but not limited to, expert and lay investigation and testimony. Funds collected from the application fee shall be deposited in a dedicated fund administered by the Chief Financial Officer of the Township. SECTION 3. Effective date: The application fee set forth in §244.3(b) shall be effective immediately. In accordance with the provisions of P.L. 197, ch. 256, Section 6c, the Township shall not be required to pay for expert and lay investigation or testimony prior to March 22, 1999. SECTION 4. If any section, paragraph subsection, clause or provision of this Ordinance shall be declared invalid by a Court of competent jurisdiction, such decision shall not affect the validity of this Ordinance as a whole or any part hereof. SECTION 5 All ordinances or part of ordinances of the Township of Cherry Hill heretofore adopted that are inconsistent with any of the terms and provision of this Ordinance are hereby repealed to the extent of such inconsistency. SECTION 6. This Ordinance shall take effect immediately upon its final passage and publication as provided by law, except as specific effective date are established herein. INTRODUCED: March 9. 1998 ADOPTED .. 23, 1998 'MYRI´┐ŻA C. CLOTH RMC TOWNSHIP CLERK SUSAN BASS LEVIN MAYOR i ARTHUR SIMONS COUNCIL PRESIDENT