2005 Legislation
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SENATE BILL NO. 1014 – Serious crime, definition


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Bill Status

S1014................................................by JUDICIARY AND RULES
SERIOUS CRIME - Amends existing law to revise the definition for "serious
01/17    Senate intro - 1st rdg - to printing
01/18    Rpt prt - to Jud
02/01    Rpt out - rec d/p - to 2nd rdg
02/02    2nd rdg - to 3rd rdg
02/07    3rd rdg - PASSED - 34-0-1
      AYES -- Andreason, Brandt, Broadsword, Bunderson, Burkett,
      Burtenshaw, Cameron, Coiner, Compton, Corder, Darrington, Davis,
      Gannon, Geddes, Goedde, Jorgenson, Kelly, Keough, Langhorst, Little,
      Lodge, Malepeai, Marley, McGee, McKenzie, Noble, Pearce, Richardson,
      Schroeder, Stegner, Stennett, Sweet, Werk, Williams
      NAYS -- None
      Absent and excused -- Hill
    Floor Sponsor - Jorgenson
    Title apvd - to House
02/08    House intro - 1st rdg - to Jud
03/02    Rpt out - rec d/p - to 2nd rdg
03/03    2nd rdg - to 3rd rdg
03/09    3rd rdg - PASSED - 66-0-4
      AYES -- Anderson, Andrus, Barraclough, Barrett, Bastian, Bayer, Bell,
      Bilbao, Black, Block, Boe, Bolz, Bradford, Cannon, Chadderdon, Clark,
      Collins, Crow, Deal, Denney, Edmunson, Ellsworth, Eskridge,
      Field(18), Field(23), Garrett, Hart, Harwood, Henbest, Henderson,
      Jaquet, Jones, Kemp, LeFavour, Loertscher, Martinez, Mathews,
      McGeachin, Miller, Mitchell, Moyle, Nielsen, Nonini, Pasley-Stuart,
      Pence, Raybould, Ring, Ringo, Roberts, Rusche, Rydalch, Sali, Sayler,
      Schaefer, Shepherd(2), Shepherd(8), Shirley, Skippen, Smith(30),
      Smith(24), Smylie, Stevenson, Trail, Wills, Wood, Mr. Speaker
      NAYS -- None
      Absent and excused -- Bedke, Lake, McKague, Snodgrass
    Floor Sponsor - Ellsworth
    Title apvd - to Senate
03/10    To enrol
03/11    Rpt enrol - Pres signed
03/14    Sp signed
03/15    To Governor
03/21    Governor signed
         Session Law Chapter 93
         Effective: 07/01/05

Bill Text

  ]]]]              LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF IDAHO             ]]]]
 Fifty-eighth Legislature                   First Regular Session - 2005
                                       IN THE SENATE
                                    SENATE BILL NO. 1014
                              BY JUDICIARY AND RULES COMMITTEE
  1                                        AN ACT
  4    Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Idaho:
  5        SECTION 1.  That Section 19-851, Idaho Code, be, and the  same  is  hereby
  6    amended to read as follows:
  7        19-851.  RIGHT  TO  REPRESENTATION BY COUNSEL -- DEFINITIONS. In this act,
  8    the term:
  9        (a)  "Detain" means to have in custody or otherwise deprive of freedom  of
 10    action;
 11        (b)  "Expenses,"  when  used  with  reference to representation under this
 12    act, includes the expenses of investigation, other preparation, and trial;
 13        (c)  "Needy person" means a person who, at the time  his  need  is  deter-
 14    mined,  is unable to provide for the full payment of an attorney and all other
 15    necessary expenses of representation;
 16        (d)  "Serious crime" includes:
 17        (1)  a felony;
 18        (2)  any misdemeanor or offense the penalty for which, excluding imprison-
 19        ment for non-payment nonpayment of a fine,  includes  the  possibility  of
 20        confinement. for more than six (6) months.

Statement of Purpose / Fiscal Impact

                       STATEMENT OF PURPOSE
                             RS 14529                         

This bill is one of a series of bills that the Supreme Court has recommended in
its annual report to the Governor concerning defects or omissions in the laws,
as required under article V, section 25 of the Idaho Constitution.  Idaho Code
 19-852 provides that counsel must be appointed for a needy person who is under
formal charge of having committed a "serious crime."  Idaho Code  19-851 states
that "serious crime" includes "(1) a felony; (2) any misdemeanor or offense the
penalty for which, excluding imprisonment for non-payment of a fine, includes the
possibility of confinement for more than six (6) months."  This is in conflict
with United States Supreme Court decisions holding that an indigent defendant
cannot be sentenced to any term of confinement unless counsel was appointed to
represent the defendant.  Argersinger v. Hamlin, 407 U.S. 25 (1972).  This act
would amend Idaho Code  19-851 to make clear that "serious crime" includes any
misdemeanor that includes the possibility of confinement.  This would bring the
statutes on appointment of counsel in criminal cases into conformity with United
States Supreme Court cases, would avoid any confusion arising from the current
conflict between the statute and case law.

                         FISCAL IMPACT

There will be no fiscal impact as a result of this legislation.


Contact Person:

Patricia Tobias
Administrative Director of the Courts
(208) 334-2246