City of Atlanta
Georgia

Ordinance
19-O-1486
Filed without Objection
Dec 2, 2019 1:00 PM

AN ORDINANCE BY COUNCILMEMBERS NATALYN M. ARCHIBONG AND ANTONIO BROWN AMENDING CHAPTER 62, (COURTS), ARTICLE II, (MUNICIPAL COURT), DIVISION I, (GENERALLY), SECTION 62-29, (PUBLIC DEFENDER AND ASSISTANT), OF THE CITY OF ATLANTA CODE OF ORDINANCES, IN ORDER TO AUTHORIZE THE PUBLIC DEFENDER TO PROVIDE LEGAL REPRESENTATION TO CRIMINAL DEFENDANTS WITH PENDING PROCEEDINGS IN THE ATLANTA IMMIGRATION COURT; TO AUTHORIZE THE PUBLIC DEFENDER TO PROMULGATE ADMINISTRATIVE RULES RELATED TO THE REPRESENTATION OF INDIVIDUALS IN THE ATLANTA IMMIGRATION COURT, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, RULES GOVERNING THE SELECTION OF INDIVIDUALS TO RECEIVE THESE SERVICES; AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES.

Information

Department:Office of the Municipal ClerkSponsors:Councilmember, District 5 Natalyn Mosby Archibong, Councilmember, District 3 Antonio Brown
Category:Personal PaperFunctions:None Required

Attachments

  1. Printout
  2. 10 AMENDING CHAPTER 62

Item Discussion

(Referred back to Public Safety and Legal Administration by Atlanta City Council 9/16/19) (Held 9/24/19 at the request of Chair)

Body

WHEREAS, pursuant to Section 62-29 of the City of Atlanta Code of Ordinances, (Public

Defender and Assistant), the public defender of the municipal court is authorized to represent and provide legal services to indigent defendants who are tried in the municipal

court;

 

WHEREAS, Section 62-29 also authorizes the public defender to provide legal services to indigent defendants who appear before the municipal court for commitment purposes, including all necessary pretrial preparation and interviews; and

 

WHEREAS, additionally, Section 62-29 authorizes the public defender to aid with jail discharge planning, and assistance with the coordination of social service for defendants; and

 

WHEREAS, Section 62-29 also ensures the public defender can provide legal services to all persons detained in City of Atlanta detention facilities in furtherance of the public defender's holistic representation model; and

 

WHEREAS, state law provides at OCGA § 50-36-1(b) that municipalities must verify the lawful presence in the United States under federal immigration law of any applicant for public benefits; and

 

WHEREAS, however, the description of public benefits contained in OCGA § so-36- l(a)(l), which includes 27 separate benefits, does not include the provision of legal services as a benefit subject to the requirements of OCGA § 50-36-1; and

 

WHEREAS, this omission is consistent with public policy expressed in state law which expressly exempts attorneys or employees of attorneys for representing a criminal defendant from the prohibition contained in OCGA § 50-36-2, which prevents

 

 

 

municipalities from accepting, relying upon, or utilize an identification document for any official purpose that requires the presentation of identification by such agency or political subdivision or by federal or state law unless it is a secure and verifiable document, See OCGA § 50-36-2(b), (c), (f)(g); and

 

WHEREAS, the omission of legal services in the description of public benefit contained in OCGA § so-36-1(a)(1), is also consistent with public policy expressed in state law which exempts "legal advice, recommending a specific course of legal action, or providing any other assistance that requires legal analysis, legal judgement, or the interpretation of the law", from  the definition of "immigration assistance" which may not be provided by a person within the state of Georgia without holding a license issued by the state as an immigration assistance provider, See OCGA §§ 40-20A-2, 40-20A-4; and

 

WHEREAS, in accordance with these provisions of state law, the City is authorized to provide legal representation to criminal defendants regardless of whether the City is able to verify the lawful presence in the United States Under federal immigration law of such defendants; and

 

WHEREAS, it is the desire of the City of Atlanta to authorize the public defender to provide legal representation to criminal defendants with pending proceedings in the Atlanta  Immigration Court, and  to authorize  the  public defender  to promulgate administrative rules related to such representation which shall include, but shall not be limited to, rules governing the selection of individuals to receive these services.

 

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT ORDAINED BY THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF ATLANTA, GEORGIAAS FOLLOWS:

 

SECTION 1: That Chapter 62, Article II, Division 1, Section 62-29(b) of the City of the City of Atlanta Code of Ordinances be amended so that it shall read as follows (with permanent additions in underline font and permanent deletions in strikethrough font):

 

Sec. 62-29. - Public defender and assistant.

 

(b)   The duties of the public defender of the municipal court shall be the representation of, and the provision of legal services to, indigent defendants who are tried in the municipal court and the representation of, and provision of legal services to, indigent defendants who appear before the municipal court for commitment purposes, including all necessary pretrial preparation and interviews. In addition, the public defender is authorized to: provide legal services to indigent defendants who are detained in City of Atlanta detention facilities; provide legal representation to criminal defendants with pending proceedings in the Atlanta Immigration Court, and promulgate administrative rules related to the representation of criminal defendants with pending proceedings in the Atlanta Immigration Court which shall include, but shall not be limited to, rules governing the selection of individuals to receive these services; provide assistance with jail discharge planning; assist with coordination of social services for defendants; and apply for grant funding on behalf of the city to support these efforts, pursuant to the city's Procurement Code.

 

SECTION 2: That this Ordinance shall take effect immediately upon its approval.

 

SECTION 3: That all ordinances and parts of ordinances in conflict herewith are hereby waived only to the extent of the conflict.

 

Meeting History

Aug 19, 2019 1:00 PM Video Atlanta City Council Regular Meeting
draft Draft

REFERRED TO PUBLIC SAFETY AND LEGAL ADMINISTRATION COMMITTEE WITHOUT OBJECTION

RESULT:REFERRED WITHOUT OBJECTION
Aug 27, 2019 3:00 PM Video Public Safety & Legal Administration Committee Regular Committee Meeting
draft Draft

Michelle Maziar, Director, Office of Immigrant Affairs

Amber Robinson, Senior Assistant City Attorney

Kenneth Days III, Chief Public Defender

RESULT:FAVORABLE [3 TO 2]
MOVER:Antonio Brown, District 3
SECONDER:Andrea L. Boone, District 10
AYES:Andrea L. Boone, Marci Collier Overstreet, Antonio Brown
NAYS:J. P. Matzigkeit, Howard Shook
ABSTAIN:Dustin Hillis
ABSENT:Andre Dickens
Sep 3, 2019 1:00 PM Video Atlanta City Council Regular Meeting
draft Draft

Chairperson Hillis made a Substitute Motion to Table for a two-week time certain. It was Seconded by Council Member Westmoreland and the Motion CARRIED by a roll call vote of 12 yeas; 2 nays.

TABLED BY A ROLL CALL VOTE OF 12 YEAS; 2 NAYS

RESULT:TABLED [12 TO 2]Next: 9/16/2019 1:00 PM
MOVER:Dustin Hillis, Councilmember, District 9
SECONDER:Matt Westmoreland, Councilmember, Post 2 At Large
AYES:Michael Julian Bond, Matt Westmoreland, Andre Dickens, Carla Smith, Amir R Farokhi, Jennifer N. Ide, Howard Shook, J. P. Matzigkeit, Dustin Hillis, Andrea L. Boone, Marci Collier Overstreet, Joyce M Sheperd
NAYS:Antonio Brown, Natalyn Mosby Archibong
AWAY:Cleta Winslow
Sep 16, 2019 1:00 PM Video Atlanta City Council Regular Meeting
draft Draft

Council Member Hillis made a Motion to Refer 19-O-1486 back to the Public Safety and Legal Administration Committee. It was Seconded by Council Member Overstreet and the Motion CARRIED by a roll call vote of 13 yeas; 0 nays.

REFERRED TO PUBLIC SAFETY AND LEGAL ADMINISTRATION COMMITTEE BY A ROLL CALL VOTE OF 13 YEAS; 0 NAYS

RESULT:REFERRED TO COMMITTEE [13 TO 0]
MOVER:Dustin Hillis, Councilmember, District 9
SECONDER:Marci Collier Overstreet, Councilmember, District 11
AYES:Matt Westmoreland, Andre Dickens, Carla Smith, Amir R Farokhi, Antonio Brown, Cleta Winslow, Natalyn Mosby Archibong, Jennifer N. Ide, Howard Shook, J. P. Matzigkeit, Dustin Hillis, Andrea L. Boone, Marci Collier Overstreet
AWAY:Michael Julian Bond, Joyce M Sheperd
Sep 24, 2019 3:00 PM Video Public Safety & Legal Administration Committee Regular Committee Meeting
draft Draft
RESULT:HELD IN COMMITTEE [UNANIMOUS]
MOVER:Dustin Hillis, Chair
SECONDER:Howard Shook, District 7
AYES:Dustin Hillis, Andrea L. Boone, Andre Dickens, Marci Collier Overstreet, Howard Shook, Antonio Brown
ABSENT:J. P. Matzigkeit
Oct 7, 2019 1:00 PM Video Atlanta City Council Regular Meeting
draft Draft

RETURNED AS HELD TO PUBLIC SAFETY AND LEGAL ADMINISTRATION COMMITTEE WITHOUT OBJECTION

MEMBERS PRESENT: HILLIS, SHOOK, BOONE, DICKENS, BROWN & COLLIER OVERSTREET

RESULT:RETURNED AS HELD
Oct 15, 2019 3:00 PM Video Public Safety & Legal Administration Committee Regular Committee Meeting
draft Draft
RESULT:HELD IN COMMITTEE
Oct 21, 2019 1:00 PM Video Atlanta City Council Regular Meeting
draft Draft

RETURNED AS HELD TO PUBLIC SAFETY AND LEGAL ADMINISTRATION COMMITTEE WITHOUT OBJECTION

MEMBERS PRESENT: HILLIS, MATZIGKEIT, BOONE, DICKENS, COLLIER OVERSTREET, SHOOK & BROWN

RESULT:RETURNED AS HELD
Oct 29, 2019 3:00 PM Video Public Safety & Legal Administration Committee Regular Committee Meeting
draft Draft
RESULT:HELD IN COMMITTEE
Nov 4, 2019 1:00 PM Video Atlanta City Council Regular Meeting
draft Draft

RETURNED AS HELD TO PUBLIC SAFETY AND LEGAL ADMINISTRATION COMMITTEE WITHOUT OBJECTION

RESULT:RETURNED AS HELD
Nov 12, 2019 3:00 PM  Public Safety & Legal Administration Committee Regular Committee Meeting
draft Draft
RESULT:HELD IN COMMITTEE
Nov 18, 2019 1:00 PM Video Atlanta City Council Regular Meeting
draft Draft

RETURNED AS HELD TO PUBLIC SAFETY AND LEGAL ADMINISTRATION COMMITTEE WITHOUT OBJECTION

RESULT:RETURNED AS HELD
Nov 26, 2019 3:00 PM Video Public Safety & Legal Administration Committee Regular Committee Meeting
draft Draft
RESULT:HELD IN COMMITTEE
Dec 2, 2019 1:00 PM Video Atlanta City Council Regular Meeting
draft Draft

AUTOMATICALLY TERMINATED AND FILED PER CHARTER SECTION 2-407 WITHOUT OBJECTION

RESULT:FILED WITHOUT OBJECTION