CDANY Annual Report
July 2019 - July 2020
Table of Contents
1) Board of Directors
- David Schopp, President, Erie
- Laurette Mulry, President Elect, Suffolk
- Leanne Lapp, Treasurer, Ontario
- Sandra McCarthy, Secretary, Rensselaer
Board of Directors:
- N. Scott Banks, Nassau
- Robert Dean, New York
- Clare Degnan, Westchester
- Kathleen Dougherty, Onondaga
- Norm Effman, Wyoming
- Stan German, New York
- Matt Knecht, New York
- Tina Luongo, New York, Past President
- James McGahan, St. Lawrence
- Frank Nebush, Oneida
- Justine Olderman, Bronx
- Lisa Schreibersdorf, Kings, Past President
- John Turi, Rensselaer
- Kate Woods, Ontario
- Tom Soucia, Franklin
- David Squirrell, Putnam
2) Treasurer’s Report
Overall, income was up from last year from approximately $21,215 in an annual operating fund to over $35,000 which has allowed us to take on extra expenses like our lobbyist and still maintain solvency and stability.
3) Committees Activities:
This has been a highly active year for the Executive Committee.
- Bylaws: At last year’s meeting, the bylaws were amended to delete the two-tiered memberships and make every office an institutional member with the chief or their designee as the voting member. It is important to note that this change did not result in a loss of membership but did result in a rise in income for CDANY. We also allowed designees to be board members if approved by the chief and the board and other criteria were met. We also made all board positions two-year terms and staggered them so ½ of the board would cycle off each year and we would not lose the entire board in a single year. The Executive Committee is making no recommendations to change the bylaws any further at this time.
- Lobbying: The CDANY Executive Committee, in working with the Legislative Committee, was heavily involved in lobbying efforts that resulted in bail, discovery and other reforms. After seeing the needs of CDANY, the Executive Committee examined many options for lobbying. The Committee recommended the Board employ Bob Perry to assist us in our lobbying efforts. The full board approved this arrangement and Bob was employed to assist us and, obviously, was very successful in his efforts. In April 2020 the Executive Committee negotiated a contract with Bob to move forward with him to, hopefully, be a permanent member of the CDANY staff.
Bob, the Executive Committee and the Legislative Committee worked in unison with the members of CDANY and others to organize the push back against the push back on bail, speedy trial, and discovery reform and, overall, though some changes were made, they were relatively minor compared to the gains we have made. The Executive Committee organized highly effective testimony at the legislature.
Due to the efforts of Bob, the Executive Committee, the Legislative Committee and our membership, CDANY has become a voice and a force at the Capitol and our relationships with partners and advocates have been further developed.
- COVID 19: As soon as the Courts closed, CDANY saw the need to bring the Chiefs together and began to have weekly meetings with all the Chiefs in NYS, whether they were members of CDANY or not. The Executive Committee felt strongly that communication among our offices during this difficult time was imperative.
- At many of these meeting ILS and/or NYSDA provided us with information involving funding issues and ever-changing law.
- We also had presentations on legislative activity early in the crisis, writs during COVID, training on PH’s, roundtables on implementation of Executive Orders, changes to bail and discovery, virtual court proceedings, HH fund distribution, staff issues, case counts during COVID, and many other issues of common concern.
- As a result of the efforts of the Executive Committee, both Upstate and Downstate providers were consulted by the Governor’s Office regarding Preliminary Hearing Executive Orders. CDANY was the major influence in getting Preliminary Hearings resumed in NYS in some form.
- The Executive Committee also organized two task forces to address the COVID crisis within the court system: A reopening task force and a justice court task force. These task forces have attempted communicate with OCA regarding the defense position on reopening.
- The reopening task force presented regularly at the weekly chief meetings regarding issues of office reopening and court reopening.
- These meetings were imperative in keeping us all informed and united in the public defense community during the shutdown.
- Due to the timing of the meetings, commencing almost immediately after the shutdown, we were also able to come together as a community to discuss issues we were facing with electronic discovery, bail changes, funding issues and other issues not related to COVID. It is very important for us to stay in communication regarding these issues statewide.
- Racial Inequities: As a result of the murder of George Floyd and the protests that followed which are, generally, trained directly at inequities in the criminal justice system and policing our clients of color, the Executive Committee created a CDANY task force on race. This task force will assist us in addressing issues within our offices, as well as our lobbying efforts to change policy and our efforts to interject conversations about racial inequality in the courtrooms across NYS.
- The final project of the Executive Committee for the 19-20 year was to solidify protocols for all our committees. The Executive Committee feels strongly that we are ready to have the committees take on a more organized role for CDANY. Please consider joining a committee or task force, all members are eligible. Please contact the President if you would like to be appointed to a committee or task force.
- The nominating committee made up of the Executive Committee and past presidents Tina Luongo and Lisa Schriebersdorf recommend the following:
Slate of Officers:
Laurette Mulry- President
Leanne Lapp- President Elect
Stan German- Treasurer
Board Members recommended for another 2-year term:
New Board Members recommended for their first term:
Bob Dean, chair, Leanne Lapp and David Schopp.
Our Amicus Committee keeps the membership and board advised of major cases being heard in our appellate courts. The Committee makes regular recommendations to the Board as to amicus briefs CDANY should join or file.
This year we joined:
- Braithwite v. Barr (2nd Circuit) A defendant cannot be deported if conviction is under appellate review. What is at issue is whether the defendant has to show appeal is meritorious to avoid deportation (May, 2020).
- Soares v.Hestie (Albany) defending the Commission Prosecutorial Misconduct (September 2019).
- Gonzales v. US Immigration contesting ICE detentions.
- NYS v. ICE (SDNY) opposing using NY Courts as staging grounds for ICE detentions (November 2019).
- People Ex rel. Chance McCurdy v. Warden regarding SARA conditions if a defendant is released to PRS (December 2019).
- Robinson v. Long (6th Circuit) The constitutionality of automatically suspending driver’s licenses for nonpayment of fines (November 2019). Also singed on to 4th, 5th and 9th Circuit briefs on the same subject.
- People v. Pedro Hernandez (1st Dept.) Whether the trial judge should have held a 330.30 hearing on juror contamination (August 2019)
The legislative committee is chaired by Tina Luongo and has recently added new members from each appellate division, pursuant to our bylaws. New members appointed by the President were:
Stan Germain, Bob Dean, Tina Luongo (1st), Laurette Mulry, N.Scott Banks, Clare Degnan, Lisa Schreibersdorf (2nd), Sandra McCarthy, James McGahan (3rd) , Tim Donaher, Daryl Bloom, Leanne Lapp and David Schopp (4th).
With the assistance of Bob Perry the committee is looking at a new set of protocols.
The legislative committee, with the approval of the Board would like to make the following motion to the membership:
Pursuant to our bylaws, the membership must vote to give the legislative committee authority to act in legislative matters on behalf of CDANY. Therefore, that authority is granted understanding the board will maintain oversight and the membership will be informed of the activities of the legislative committee.
Motion Maker: Board of Directors and Legislative Committee.
The legislative committee has been very active this year and highly effective in advocating and for legislation that will benefit our clients including, but not limited to raise the age, bail reform, discovery reform, 30.30 reform, holding the line on the push-back to all of these reforms. Additionally, they are pushing forward with a new legislative agenda based on the work of the CDANY task force on race and its recommendations and have been as active as possible in being heard on the defense position regarding Executive Orders during COVID. Bob Perry has been an amazing addition to our legislative team.
The board is regularly informed of the activities of the committee and the membership stays informed though the membership meetings, the website and the newsletter.
David Schopp, chair, Sandra McCarthy, Leanne Lapp and Kathleen Dougherty. The membership committee has many responsibilities and is always looking for new members.
- In spite of a raise in membership dues, membership has gone up a bit and now 52 offices are members but we would like to see that grow.
- The website has been updated and stays updated with membership materials, training materials and other relevant information for the chief.
- The list serves remain up and running and are being used by our members.
- The weekly calls to keep our members informed of the activities of CDANY, court re-opening, changes in law, Executive Orders, ILS information and other issues of common interest will continue if our membership continues participation.
- CDANY Newsletter continues to look for submissions.
Stan German, chair, David Schopp and Frank Nebush. This committee has, historically, organized two career fairs annually: one in the fall at Buffalo Law School and one in the spring at Albany Law School. However, obviously, we did not have a spring fair and it is unlikely that we will have a fall fair. The committee will look for some creative ways to recruit attorney and non-attorney staff to our offices, particularly in rural areas.
Staff Development & Training Committee:
Lisa Schriebersdorf, chair, Tim Donaher and Clare Degnan.
We have a number of trainings from Tim’s office on the CDANY website. Lisa has organized trainings with ILS regarding contract drafting and voucher reimbursement. Leanne Lapp is organizing an investigator training. CDANY has also organized other trainings and will continue to offer trainings to our members.
Contract and Data Procedures:
This committee is in need of a chair.
- CDANY task for on race- Stan (chair), Lisa, Leanne, Bob Perry, and Laurette. This committee is starting to meet and making recommendations to the Board and the Legislative Committee.
- Court reopening-Chaired by Tim Donaher, meets regularly and continues to update membership, communicate with OCA, magistrates and other relevant partners.
- Justice Courts- Chaired by Kathleen Dougherty has begun to meet and is working in conjunction with re-opening.