(A) The county commissioners in any county may establish a county public defender commission. The commission shall have five members, three of whom shall be appointed by the board of county commissioners, and two by the judge, or the presiding judge if there is one, of the court of common pleas of the county. At least one member appointed by each of these appointing bodies shall be an attorney admitted to the practice of law in this state.
(B) The board of county commissioners shall select a specific day for the county public defender commission to be established and on which all members' appointments shall take effect, and shall notify the Ohio public defender commission of the date.
(C) Of the initial appointments made to the county public defender commission, two appointments by the county commissioners and one appointment by the court shall be for a term of two years ending two years after the date the commission is established, and one appointment by each of the appointing bodies shall be for a term ending four years after the date the commission is established. Thereafter, terms of office shall be for four years, each term ending on the same day of the same month of the year as did the term which it succeeds. Each member shall hold office from the date of appointment until the end of the term for which the member was appointed. Any member appointed to fill a vacancy occurring prior to the expiration of the term for which the member's predecessor was appointed shall hold office for the remainder of such term. Any member shall continue in office subsequent to the expiration date of the member's term until a successor takes office, or until a period of sixty days has elapsed, whichever occurs first.
(D) The members of the commission shall choose as chairperson one of the commission members, who shall serve as chairperson for two years. Meetings shall be held at least quarterly and at such other times as called by the chairperson or by request of the county public defender. Members of the commission may receive an amount fixed by the county commissioners, but not in excess of the amounts set for the members of the Ohio public defender commission pursuant to section 124.14 of the Revised Code per diem for every meeting of the board they attend, and necessary expenses including mileage for each mile necessarily traveled.
(E) The county commissioners may terminate the county public defender commission at any time if at least ninety days prior to termination, the commissioners notify the Ohio public defender commission in writing of the termination date. Upon the termination date all pending county public defender matters shall be transferred to the state public defender, a joint county public defender, or appointed counsel.
(F) The cost of representation in all matters assumed by the state public defender shall be charged to the counties in accordance with division (D) of section 120.06 of the Revised Code.
Effective Date: 11-15-1981; 09-29-2005