WKU Public Radio News Staff
Tue January 31, 2006
Public Defenders And Prosecutors Want More
Frankfort, KY – State public defenders are asking for more money to keep up with crowded courts in Eastern Kentucky.
While federal funding to fight drug trafficking there has helped the war on drugs, it's left no money for public defenders.
Advocates say the crackdown on pushers by federally funded drug taskforces have public defenders with too much work and not enough money. Officials say the state will spend $35 million for public defenders this year, compared with almost $82 million for prosecutors.
Public defenders aren't the only ones asking for more money though. State prosecutors say they need more or they'll be forced to cut staff.
Officials say the state has made more than 1,500 arrests during drug roundups in the last year.