AOC Receives Interpreter Grant Funding

AOC Receives Interpreter Grant Funding

We came across a recent development regarding state funding for interpreters and wanted to share what it means. The Administrative Office of the Courts has received one time grant funding for a $200,000 project to pay for the costs of interpreters for specific non-indigent parties. The following are types of cases eligible for funding.
  • Cases in which an adult is charged with a felony or a misdemeanor and is in jeopardy of incarceration;
  • Contempt of court proceedings in which the defendant is in jeopardy of incarceration;
  • Proceedings initiated by a petition for habeas corpus, early release from incarceration, suspended sentence, or probation revocation;
  • Proceedings initiated by a petition for post-conviction relief, subject to the provisions of Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 28 and Tennessee Code Annotated sections 40-30-101 et seq.;
  • Parole revocation proceedings pursuant to the authority of state and/or federal law;
  • Judicial proceedings under Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 33, Chapters 3 through 8, Mental Health Law;
  • Cases in which a superintendent of a mental health facility files a petition under the guardianship law, Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 34; and
  • Cases under Tennessee Code Annotated section 37-10-304 and Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 24, relative to petitions for waiver of parental consent for abortions by minors.
  • Cases in which a juvenile is charged with juvenile delinquency for committing an act which would be a misdemeanor or a felony if committed by an adult;
  • Cases under Titles 36 and 37 of the Tennessee Code Annotated involving allegations against parents that could result in finding a child dependent or neglected or in terminating parental rights
  • Cases alleging unruly conduct of a child which place the child in jeopardy of being removed from the home pursuant to Tennessee Code Annotated section 37-1-132(b).
  • Grant funds have been awarded from the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Competitive Grant Program. The grant funding ends as of June 30, 2012.
All courts (trial/general sessions/juvenile) that hear cases as outlined above, in which there is a non-indigent party and in which there has been an appointment of an interpreter, may advise the interpreter that he/she can invoice the AOC for the costs of the interpreting through the grant period.

From my read of this notice it appears that private criminal defendants are eligible for funding in criminal cases in all of our state courts where jail is a possible outcome.  This is a one year grant and when the $200k is gone then it looks like it is over.  While not a solution to long time interpreter services issues, it could be a valuable resource for cases you have now.

Questions regarding payment rates and general questions about this project can be sent to the following:

Mary Rose Zingale, Court Services Director
Mary.Rose.Zingale@tncourts.gov
Administrative Office of the Courts
511 Union Street
Nashville, Tennessee 37219
(615) 741-2687 or 1-800-448-7970
Fax: (615) 741-6285
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