April 12, 2017
Contact: Kate Coscarelli
Senior Managing Director Communications
NEW BRUNSWICK – New Jersey State Bar Association President Thomas H. Prol is scheduled to testify this week to express deep concern about proposed funding cuts to Legal Services of New Jersey.
Prol is scheduled to appear before the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee Thursday to oppose proposals to cut $5 million in funding from Legal Services of New Jersey.
Prol also wrote directly to Gov. Chris Christie, urging him to restore the diminished funding for the agency. Read that letter here.
Prol says the proposed cuts deeply troubling because of the value the agency plays in providing essential legal representation to underserved residents in New Jersey.
"Legal Services provides free legal aid in civil legal matters to the state’s poorest, most vulnerable residents. Now more than ever, these people need these services. There is no constitutional right to counsel in civil legal matters, so when those living in desperate poverty are facing adversity in their weakest state, LSNJ provides their most important resource," said Prol.
The association also added its voice to a growing chorus of groups expressing outrage over proposals to cut funding altogether from the federal budget for Legal Services Corporation, which provides funding to agencies around the nation that help the poor, including LSNJ. The association urged every member of the New Jersey Congressional delegation to oppose that proposal. Read those letters here.
Thursday's Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee begins at 11 a.m.
Read the testimony here.