Meskwaki Tribe - Request for Proposals for Public Defender

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Posted On: November 13, 2017


The Sac & Fox Tribe of the Mississippi in Iowa is requesting proposals from a qualified attorney/firm that is interested in providing public defender services for its Meskwaki Tribal Court, as described below.
Department: Meskwaki Tribal Court Salary: D.O.Q & D.O.E
Position: Tribal Public Defender

The attorney or firm awarded the part-time contract shall be the primary Public Defender for the Meskwaki Tribal Court and shall be duly appointed to represent all defendants for whom legal counsel is appointed by the Meskwaki Tribal Court.

1. Represent individual tribal members who are indigent defendants in criminal proceedings at all scheduled court appearances before the Meskwaki Tribal Court, including consulting with defendants in custody; arraignments; in-custody bail hearings; pre-trial conferences; trials; sentencing; post-disposition proceedings; and appeals;
2. Provide Guardian Ad Litem services as needed in child welfare, civil, or guardianship cases;
3. As directed, assist in preparing policies and guidelines to provide proper procedures for carrying out the Public Defender duties and responsibilities; assist in the development of any budgets for the work of the Public Defender;
4. Meet with the Tribal Council when necessary and appropriate;
5. Preserve and uphold the Meskwaki Constitution and By-laws, its Tribal Code, tribal jurisdiction, resolutions, and all applicable federal laws.
6. Assist in development of Meskwaki Bar Association duties and organization
The responsibilities listed above are representative of the work assigned and are not necessarily all-inclusive.

▪ J.D. Degree from an ABA accredited law school and 3 years of experience preferred in criminal prosecution and /or defense
▪ Must be admitted to practice, and in good standing, in any state and eligible to be admitted in Meskwaki Tribal Court. Prefer admission in or ability to be admitted in Iowa Bar
▪ Skill in legal research, writing and analysis
▪ Knowledge of legal principles, practices and proceedings
▪ Prior legal experience in areas of criminal prosecution and/or defense in Indian Country desirable
▪ Must have litigation experience and familiarity with federal, state, and local court rules and procedures
▪ Must be able to interpret and apply case law, codes, ordinances and administrative rules
▪ Must be committed to concepts of tribal sovereignty, self-government and Indian self- determination

▪ Supervised by the Sac & Fox Tribe of the Mississippi in Iowa Tribal Council

General Information:
These services are intended to begin upon hire. Currently the Meskwaki Tribal Court holds criminal court every weekday at 9:00-10:00am, with civil cases calendared as needed. Detailed information of the case volume and nature of the cases can be received by contacting the Clerk of Court’s office at 641-484-9300. The Court anticipates services needed for 15-20 hours per week for approximately 5 months. Proposals will be evaluated by the attorney’s quality of experience, strength of the application and approach described in the proposal, and cost.

The attorney/firm selected for these services will enter into a professional services agreement which will address compensation. Proposals must clearly set forth the fees or fee structure to be charged for the proposed services. The Court prefers a fixed rate contract.

Application Procedure:
All individual applicants must submit a detailed proposal, including the applicant’s professional qualifications; the applicant’s understanding of the type and level of services needed; the applicant’s intended approach to providing the services; and the applicant’s compensation structure for those services; and the applicant’s three professional references.

The proposal shall be sent by fax, email, or mail to:

Human Resources Department
Sac & Fox Tribe of the Mississippi in Iowa
349 Meskwaki Road
Tama, IA 52339
FAX: (641)484-8478

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