The Indiana Office of Court Services (IOCS) distributed more than $6.3 million in grants to 83 counties.
IOCS houses several programs with specific judicial focuses meant to assist children, families, the elderly, and those with physical disabilities.
The amount allocated for each program is determined by various methods, and is distributed from funds allocated by the Indiana General Assembly during the last budget session in early 2017. An overview of the grant distribution follows.
Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) (matching grants) – $3 million distributed to 83 counties
Funds are distributed pursuant to statutory formula based on the number of Child in Need of Services filings in each county in the previous calendar year. Counties are required to match the IOCS grant offered to them with county tax dollars.
CASA (Capacity-building grants) – $1.5 million distributed to 78 counties
Funding determined initially by running the same statutory funding formula as the matching grants, with a $1.5M allocation, and using only counties that applied for the grants (instead of all 92, as the matching formula requires). Applications were subsequently reviewed, giving preference to counties with demonstrated capacity-building, compliance with program requirements, and overall need.
Court Interpreter Program – $500,000 distributed to 28 counties
Funding determined by allocation formula using applicant’s (county) reported-interpreter use as a percentage of the total applicant pool use. From that baseline allocation, deductions are made based on funds remaining from prior grant awards—but regardless of the baseline allocation result and any deduction, there is a minimum award amount of $2,000.
Family Court Project – $175,660 distributed to 23 counties
Funding based on pre-existing funds/spending, fit within the project’s purposes, and lifetime and prior performance/compliance (if continuing to fund a pre-existing program). Reductions in the granted amount compared to the requested amount are based on a continuing effort to push long-running programs to local, sustainable funding.
Volunteer Advocates for Seniors or Incapacitated Adults (VASIA) – $1,137,785 distributed to 18 programs in 42 counties
The VASIA program awards up to $75,000 for pre-existing programs and $50,000 for new programs. Applicants must provide a 50% county/local match, of which half can be in-kind. If a match isn’t met, the award amount is reduced. The recommendation is to award each applicant their full request.