Small Budget Cut Deals Big Blow To Low-Income People In Need Of Legal Assistance

In the $23 billion budget approved with a veto override, GOP lawmakers repealed a statute that funneled state money to non-profits providing low-income clients with legal assistance.

Audio, News Story (North Carolina)

Rusty Jacobs
WUNC (Chapel Hill)
August 22, 2017

Tags: Funding: State & Local

Organizations mentioned/involved: Legal Aid of North Carolina (LANC), Charlotte Center for Legal Advocacy (formerly Legal Services of Southern Piedmont) (North Carolina), Pisgah Legal Services (PLS) (North Carolina)


The repeal of the Access to Civil Justice Act cost these legal aid groups $1.6 million—a sum that amounted to what one lobbyist called a “rounding error.”

But a drop in the bucket to state coffers equals a kick in the gut to the groups that used the money to help low-income clients avoid eviction, obtain disability benefits and seek domestic violence protection.

“We will lose $130,000 a year in funding from the state, which covered a wide range of the different kinds of work we do,” said Kenneth Schorr, executive director of Charlotte-based Legal Services of Southern Piedmont.