Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Local news briefs

County raises fees to private lawyers

The Enquirer

Private lawyers who defend poor suspects in Hamilton County will soon get $45 an hour for their efforts, up from $40, county commissioners decided Monday.

It will be the first raise since 2000. Commissioners Todd Portune and Phil Heimlich said the current fees put suspects at risk of not getting adequate legal help. But the $45 rate, which could be formally approved as soon as Wednesday, remains among the lowest rates in Ohio for the time attorneys spend in court. Butler and Clermont counties pay $50 an hour for in-court work and $40 for other work, according to the Ohio Public Defender's Office. Warren County pays $60 for in-court time and $50 for out-of-court. Hamilton County pays the same rate across the board.

Company donates backpacks for kids

More than 1,500 backpacks will be presented Wednesday . to elementary schools and nonprofit organizations during Backpack Donation Day at Office Depot in Blue Ash. The event begins at 11 a.m. at 5897 Pfeiffer Road. This year, Office Depot will donate more than 200,000 backpacks to nonprofit organizations and schools nationwide. In addition to the donations being made at the event, Office Depot also donated backpacks to the Cincinnati Public Schools for the Back-to-School/Ready-to-Learn Celebration; Early Childhood Development, a division of Cincinnati Public Schools; and the Butler County Department of Job and Family Services.

Bar association picks N.Ky. man

Erlanger lawyer William T. Robinson has been chosen treasurer-elect of the American Bar Association. He will become treasurer in August 2005 at the association's annual meeting in Chicago. Robinson oversees the Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati offices of Greenebaum Doll & McDonald. Robinson chairs the Kenton County Airport Board, co-founded the Metropolitan Growth Alliance of Greater Cincinnati and is a founding member of Northern Kentucky Tri-ED, the region's economic development recruitment agency. With more than 400,000 members, the American Bar Association is the world's largest voluntary professional membership organization.


• Watch for shifting lane closures on southbound Interstate 275 near the bridge over the Little Miami River as crews inspect the bridge between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. today.


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