State AGs Urge Congress to Keep Legal Services Funding

by Hannah Garcia

With funding for a legal aid program for low-income citizens still in danger, a bipartisan group of state attorneys general are the latest to call on the federal government to keep that money where it is.

The group, led by Republican Colorado Attorney General Cynthia Coffman and Democratic Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey, sent a letter signed by 32 other top elected lawyers from other states and territories urging Congress to oppose a piece of President Donald Trump’s proposed budget that would eliminate funding for the Legal Services Corporation.

“The legal services provided by LSC are critical for low-income and vulnerable citizens in Colorado and for mil-lions of people across the country,” Coffman said in a May 23 press re-lease.v“As a bipartisan group of attorneys general we have joined together to speak up for those people who need access to these services in order to protect their rights.”

The Trump administration on May 23 released its proposed budget for FY 2018, including a $33 million allotment to permanently shut down LSC. For FY 2017, LSC requested an appropriation of $502.7 million, $15.8 million more than the previous year’s request of $486.9 million. Most of the increase was for field grants, and the last $100,000 for the Office of Inspector General, according to LSC.

 

To read this story and other complete articles featured in the June 12, 2017 print edition of Law Week Colorado, copies are available for purchase online.