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F I S C A L I M P A C T R E P O R T
SPONSOR Martinez
ORIGINAL DATE
LAST UPDATED
1/31/06
HB 660
SHORT TITLE Sentencing Commission Workload Study
SB
ANALYST Peery
APPROPRIATION (dollars in thousands)
Appropriation
Recurring
or Non-Rec
Fund
Affected
FY06
FY07
$152.0
Recurring
General Fund
(Parenthesis ( ) Indicate Expenditure Decreases)
SOURCES OF INFORMATION
LFC Files
Responses Received From
Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC)
New Mexico Sentencing Commission (NMSC)
No Responses Received From
Administrative Office of the District Attorneys (AODA)
Public Defender Department (PDD)
SUMMARY
Synopsis of Bill
House Bill 660 appropriates $152.0 from the general fund to the New Mexico Sentencing Com-
mission for the purpose of contracting for a workload measurement study that analyzes and
makes recommendations regarding equitable statewide resource needs of the Public Defender
Department, district attorneys and state courts. The proposed bill requires the New Mexico Sen-
tencing Commission to update the workload measurement study within five years following the
completion of the initial study.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS
The appropriation of $152.0 contained in this bill is a recurring expense to the general fund. Any
unexpended or unencumbered balance remaining at the end of fiscal year 2007 shall revert to the
general fund.
pg_0002
House Bill 660 Page
2
NMSC reports, after issuing a Request for Proposals, the commission is contracting with the Na-
tional Center for State Courts to complete the Workload Measurement Study. NMSC reports the
total contract cost of the study is approximately $402,000, which includes $352,000 to be paid to
the National Center for State Courts and approximately $50,000 in costs to NMSC.
NMSC reports the commission received an appropriation in FY06 for $200,000 to conduct the
Workload Measurement Study, and expects to receive an additional $50,000 grant from the New
Mexico Traffic Safety Bureau. NMSC states the budget shortfall in conducting the study is ap-
proximately $152,000.
NMSC states without the full funding to complete the Workload Measurement Study, the district
attorneys, courts and Public Defender Department would have to take the $152,000 from their
base operating budgets to fund the study.
PERFORMANCE IMPLICATIONS
NMSC states the study would comprise of one of the 11 required of the commission under its
performance measures.
AOC reports the Workload Measurement Study will enhance the effectiveness and accuracy of
the budget preparation and request process for the Public Defender Department, district attorneys
and courts. AOC states the Public Defender Department, district attorneys and courts will bene-
fit from having a coordinated workload study conducted the NMSC, a neutral entity, because the
study will likely be viewed as objective and an accurate reflection of the true needs. AOC states
the other benefit of the study is that cases will be weighted and counted in a more consistent
manner than takes place when each entity conduct its own separate study.
ADMINISTRATIVE IMPLICATIONS
NMSC states the study can be completed in a timely manner provided the commission receives
the funding from this proposed legislation and the $50,000 grant from the Traffic Safety Bureau.
AOC states the courts, along with the Public Defender Department and district attorneys, will be
required to devote some administrative time to participate in the study.
OTHER SUBSTANTIVE ISSUES
AOC reports New Mexico Supreme Court recognizes the need for adequate funding of all com-
ponents of the criminal justice system, and thus, it created the Criminal Justice Task Force in
early 2004. AOC states representatives from the legislature, Public Defender Department, dis-
trict attorneys, private criminal defense bar and courts have been engaged in a collaborative ef-
fort to develop a plan of action to accomplish the goal of ensuring adequate funding to enable the
New Mexico criminal justice system to function effectively and appropriately. The idea to seek
an appropriation to fund a coordinated workload measurement study arose from the work of this
task force.
RLP/yr