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H.R. 2095 (111th): Restitution for the Exonerated Act of 2009

The text of the bill below is as of Apr 23, 2009 (Introduced).

Source: GPO

I

111th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 2095

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

April 23, 2009

(for himself, Mr. Cohen, Mr. Davis of Illinois, Ms. Lee of California, Mr. Bishop of Georgia, Ms. Clarke, Mr. Rush, and Mrs. Christensen) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary

A BILL

To authorize grants for programs that provide support services to exonerees.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Restitution for the Exonerated Act of 2009.

2.

Grant program authorized

(a)

Exoneree services grants authorized

The Attorney General may award grants to eligible organizations to carry out programs that provide support services to exonerees.

(b)

Grant period; renewability

A grant awarded under this section shall be for a period of one year, and may be renewed for subsequent one-year periods as the Attorney General determines to be appropriate.

(c)

Supplemental funds

The Attorney General may provide to an eligible organization awarded funds under a grant under subsection (a) for a period described in subsection (b), additional funds under such grant during such period if the Attorney General determines that the organization has need for such additional funds, such as in the case that the number of exonerees entering the population served by such organization is greater than such number expected by the organization.

3.

Grant uses

(a)

Activities

A grant awarded under this Act to an eligible organization shall be used only—

(1)

to carry out a program that provides and coordinates the delivery of support services for exonerees, including—

(A)

employment training;

(B)

vocational training;

(C)

education;

(D)

health care services;

(E)

mental health services;

(F)

housing assistance;

(G)

substance abuse training;

(H)

legal assistance;

(I)

children and family support; and

(J)

other appropriate services, as determined by the Attorney General; and

(2)

for administrative expenses necessary to carry out the program described in paragraph (1), including staff salaries and training.

(b)

Limitations

A grant awarded under this Act may not be used to provide support services—

(1)

to an exoneree who has not demonstrated financial need for such services; or

(2)

for a period of more than 24 months for any exoneree.

4.

Applications

(a)

In general

To request a grant under this Act, an eligible organization shall submit to the Attorney General an application at such time, in such manner, and containing such information as the Attorney General may require. Such application shall—

(1)

describe the program to be funded by the grant, and the need for such program;

(2)

describe a long-term strategy and detailed implementation for such program;

(3)

identify the governmental and community agencies with which the program will collaborate, and that the program will utilize to enhance exoneree services; and

(4)

describe the methodology and outcome measures that will be used to evaluate the effectiveness of such program.

(b)

Application deadlines

The Attorney General shall solicit and review applications for grants under this Act at least once during each 6-month period.

(c)

Priority based on need

In awarding grants under this Act, the Attorney General shall give priority to eligible organizations that serve geographic regions that have the greatest need for exoneree support services, as determined by the Attorney General.

5.

Reports

For each year in which an eligible organization receives a grant under this Act, the eligible organization shall submit a report to the Attorney General that describes the program carried out by the organization with such grant, and evaluates the effectiveness of such program during such year.

6.

Definitions

In this Act:

(1)

Eligible organization

The term eligible organization means any nonprofit organization that—

(A)

has experience and expertise in coordinating and delivering support services specific to the needs of exonerees; or

(B)

demonstrates the capacity to effectively coordinate and deliver such support services, as determined by the Attorney General.

(2)

Exoneree

The term exoneree means an individual who—

(A)

has been convicted by a Federal or State court of an offense that is punishable by a term of imprisonment that is equal to or greater than one year;

(B)

has served a term of imprisonment of at least 6 months in a Federal or State prison or other correctional facility as a result of such conviction; and

(C)

has been determined to be factually innocent of such offense.

(3)

Factually innocent

The term factually innocent means, with respect to an individual who has been convicted of an offense described in paragraph (2)(A), one or more of the following has occurred:

(A)

A court has issued a factual finding of innocence.

(B)

The Governor of the State in which the individual was convicted or the President, as applicable, has issued a pardon based on the facts of the offense for which the individual was convicted.

(C)

A court has vacated or reversed the conviction based on legal insufficiency of the evidence or other factual finding of actual innocence, and the Federal, State, or local government has dismissed the accusatory instrument.

7.

Authorization of appropriations

There is authorized to be appropriated to carry out this Act $2,000,000 for each of the fiscal years 2010 through 2014. Amounts authorized under this section shall remain available until expended.