State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > Illinois > Chapter110 > 3145

    (110 ILCS 916/1)
    Sec. 1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the Public Interest Attorney Assistance Act.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/5)
    Sec. 5. Legislative findings. The General Assembly finds the following:
        (1) Equal access to justice is a basic right that is
     fundamental to democracy in this State, and the integrity of this State and this State's justice system depends on protecting and enforcing the rights of all people and quality enforcement of the laws of this State.
        (2) Equal access to justice and quality enforcement
     of State laws are integral parts of the general public welfare.
        (3) Vulnerable and disadvantaged citizens of this
     State are unable to protect or enforce their rights without legal assistance from public interest attorneys.
        (4) Graduating law students and practicing attorneys
     are increasingly unable to continue in public interest attorney positions because of high student loan debt.
        (5) Assisting public interest attorneys with loan
     forgiveness is a major step toward ensuring quality legal representation for this State's most vulnerable citizens and quality enforcement of State law.
        (6) The collection and distribution of funds under
     this Act promotes justice and is in the public interest.
        (7) The use of funds for the purposes prescribed by
     this Act are in the public interest and consistent with providing equal access to justice and quality enforcement of State law.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/10)
    Sec. 10. Purpose. The purpose of this Act is to encourage qualified individuals to enter into and continue in employment in this State as assistant State's Attorneys, assistant Public Defenders, civil legal aid attorneys, assistant Attorneys General, assistant public guardians, IGAC attorneys, and legislative attorneys in a manner that protects the rights of this State's most vulnerable citizens or promotes the quality enforcement of State law.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/15)
    Sec. 15. Definitions. For the purposes of this Act:
    "Assistant State's Attorney" means a full‑time employee of a State's Attorney in Illinois or the State's Attorneys Appellate Prosecutor who is continually licensed to practice law and prosecutes or defends cases on behalf of the State or a county.
    "Assistant Attorney General" means a full‑time employee of the Illinois Attorney General who is continually licensed to practice law and prosecutes or defends cases on behalf of the State.
    "Assistant Public Defender" means a full‑time employee of a Public Defender in Illinois or the State Appellate Defender who is continually licensed to practice law and provides legal representation to indigent persons, as provided by statute.
    "Assistant public guardian" means a full‑time employee of a public guardian in Illinois who is continually licensed to practice law and provides legal representation pursuant to court appointment.
    "Civil legal aid" means free or reduced‑cost legal representation or advice to low‑income clients in non‑criminal matters.
    "Civil legal aid attorney" means an attorney who is continually licensed to practice law and is employed full time as an attorney at a civil legal aid organization in Illinois.
    "Civil legal aid organization" means a not‑for‑profit corporation in Illinois that (i) is exempt from the payment of federal income tax pursuant to Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, (ii) is established for the purpose of providing legal services that include civil legal aid, (iii) employs 2 or more full‑time attorneys who are licensed to practice law in this State and who directly provide civil legal aid, and (iv) is in compliance with registration and filing requirements that are applicable under the Charitable Trust Act and the Solicitation for Charity Act.
    "Commission" means the Illinois Student Assistance Commission.
    "Committee" means the advisory committee created under Section 20 of this Act.
    "Eligible debt" means outstanding principal, interest, and related fees from loans obtained for undergraduate, graduate, or law school educational expenses made by government or commercial lending institutions or educational institutions. "Eligible debt" excludes loans made by a private individual or family member.
    "IGAC attorney" means a full‑time employee of the Illinois Guardianship and Advocacy Commission, including the Office of State Guardian, the Legal Advocacy Service, and the Human Rights Authority, who is continually licensed to practice law and provides legal representation to carry out the responsibilities of the Illinois Guardianship and Advocacy Commission.
    "Legislative attorney" means a full‑time employee of the Illinois Senate, the Illinois House of Representatives, or the Illinois Legislative Reference Bureau who is continually licensed to practice law and provides legal advice to members of the General Assembly.
    "Program" means the Public Interest Attorney Loan Repayment Assistance Program.
    "Public interest attorney" means an attorney practicing in Illinois who is an assistant State's Attorney, assistant Public Defender, civil legal aid attorney, assistant Attorney General, assistant public guardian, IGAC attorney, or legislative attorney.
    "Qualifying employer" means (i) an Illinois State's Attorney or the State's Attorneys Appellate Prosecutor, (ii) an Illinois Public Defender or the State Appellate Defender, (iii) an Illinois civil legal aid organization, (iv) the Illinois Attorney General, (v) an Illinois public guardian, (vi) the Illinois Guardianship and Advocacy Commission, (vii) the Illinois Senate, (viii) the Illinois House of Representatives, or (ix) the Illinois Legislative Reference Bureau.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/20)
    Sec. 20. Public Interest Attorney Loan Repayment Assistance Program.
    (a) The Commission shall establish and administer the Program for the primary purpose of providing loan repayment assistance to practicing attorneys to encourage them to pursue careers as public interest attorneys to protect the rights of this State's most vulnerable citizens or provide quality enforcement of State law. The Commission shall create an advisory committee composed of representatives from organizations with relevant expertise, including one person from each of the following entities:
        (1) The Illinois State's Attorneys Association.
        (2) An office of an Illinois Public Defender.
        (3) An office of an Illinois public guardian.
        (4) The Office of the Illinois Attorney General.
        (5) An Illinois metropolitan bar association.
        (6) An Illinois statewide bar association.
        (7) A public law school in this State.
    (b) The Public Interest Attorney Loan Repayment Assistance Fund is created as a special fund in the State treasury. The Fund shall consist of all moneys remitted to the Commission under the terms of this Act. All money in the Fund shall be used, subject to appropriation, by the Commission for the purposes of this Act.
    (c) Subject to the availability of appropriations and subsections (d) and (e) of this Section, the Commission shall distribute funds to eligible applicants.
    (d) The Commission is authorized to prescribe all rules, policies, and procedures necessary or convenient for the administration of the Program and all terms and conditions applicable to payments made under this Act. This shall be done with the guidance and assistance of the Committee.
    (e) The Commission shall administer the Program, including, but not limited to, establishing and implementing the following:
        (1) An application process. Subject to the
     availability of appropriations, the Commission shall, each year, consider applications by eligible public interest attorneys for loan repayment assistance under the Program.
        (2) Eligibility requirements. The Commission shall,
     on an annual basis, receive and consider applications for loan repayment assistance under the Program if the Commission finds that the applicant:
            (i) is a citizen or permanent resident of the
         United States;
            (ii) is a licensed member of the Illinois Bar in
         good standing;
            (iii) has eligible debt in grace or repayment
         status; and
            (iv) is employed as a public interest attorney
         with a qualifying employer in Illinois.
        (3) A maximum amount of loan repayment assistance
     for each participant, which shall be $6,000 per year, up to a maximum of $30,000 during the participant's career.
        (4) Prioritization. The Commission shall develop
     criteria for prioritization among eligible applicants in the event that there are insufficient funds available to make payments to all eligible applicants under this Act. The prioritization criteria shall include the timeliness of the application, the applicant's salary level, the amount of the applicant's eligible debt, the availability of other loan repayment assistance to the applicant, the applicant's length of service as a public interest attorney, and the applicant's prior participation in the Program.
    (f) The distribution of funds available after
     administrative costs must be made by the Commission to eligible public interest attorneys in the following manner:
        (1) Loan repayment assistance must be in the form
     of a forgivable loan.
        (2) To have the loan forgiven, the participant
     shall (i) complete a year of employment with a qualifying employer and (ii) make educational debt payments (interest or principal or both) that equal at least the amount of assistance received under the Program during the assistance year.
        (3) Each loan must be documented by means of a
     promissory note executed by the borrower in a form provided by the Commission and shall be forgiven when an eligible participant meets the requirements set forth by the Commission.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/25)
    Sec. 25. Ineligibility and termination of funds; procedures.
    (a) If a participant becomes ineligible during the term of a loan, he or she must repay the outstanding amount of any loan received from the Commission.
    (b) The Commission may in its discretion forgive the loan of a participant in whole or in part in certain circumstances as set forth in its written policies and guidelines.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/30)
    Sec. 30. Other powers. The Commission may make, enter into, and execute contracts, agreements, leases, and other instruments with any person, including without limitation any federal, State, or local governmental agency, and may take other actions that may be necessary or convenient to accomplish any purpose authorized by this Act.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/90)
    Sec. 90. (Amendatory provisions; text omitted).
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10; text omitted.)

State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > Illinois > Chapter110 > 3145

    (110 ILCS 916/1)
    Sec. 1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the Public Interest Attorney Assistance Act.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/5)
    Sec. 5. Legislative findings. The General Assembly finds the following:
        (1) Equal access to justice is a basic right that is
     fundamental to democracy in this State, and the integrity of this State and this State's justice system depends on protecting and enforcing the rights of all people and quality enforcement of the laws of this State.
        (2) Equal access to justice and quality enforcement
     of State laws are integral parts of the general public welfare.
        (3) Vulnerable and disadvantaged citizens of this
     State are unable to protect or enforce their rights without legal assistance from public interest attorneys.
        (4) Graduating law students and practicing attorneys
     are increasingly unable to continue in public interest attorney positions because of high student loan debt.
        (5) Assisting public interest attorneys with loan
     forgiveness is a major step toward ensuring quality legal representation for this State's most vulnerable citizens and quality enforcement of State law.
        (6) The collection and distribution of funds under
     this Act promotes justice and is in the public interest.
        (7) The use of funds for the purposes prescribed by
     this Act are in the public interest and consistent with providing equal access to justice and quality enforcement of State law.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/10)
    Sec. 10. Purpose. The purpose of this Act is to encourage qualified individuals to enter into and continue in employment in this State as assistant State's Attorneys, assistant Public Defenders, civil legal aid attorneys, assistant Attorneys General, assistant public guardians, IGAC attorneys, and legislative attorneys in a manner that protects the rights of this State's most vulnerable citizens or promotes the quality enforcement of State law.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/15)
    Sec. 15. Definitions. For the purposes of this Act:
    "Assistant State's Attorney" means a full‑time employee of a State's Attorney in Illinois or the State's Attorneys Appellate Prosecutor who is continually licensed to practice law and prosecutes or defends cases on behalf of the State or a county.
    "Assistant Attorney General" means a full‑time employee of the Illinois Attorney General who is continually licensed to practice law and prosecutes or defends cases on behalf of the State.
    "Assistant Public Defender" means a full‑time employee of a Public Defender in Illinois or the State Appellate Defender who is continually licensed to practice law and provides legal representation to indigent persons, as provided by statute.
    "Assistant public guardian" means a full‑time employee of a public guardian in Illinois who is continually licensed to practice law and provides legal representation pursuant to court appointment.
    "Civil legal aid" means free or reduced‑cost legal representation or advice to low‑income clients in non‑criminal matters.
    "Civil legal aid attorney" means an attorney who is continually licensed to practice law and is employed full time as an attorney at a civil legal aid organization in Illinois.
    "Civil legal aid organization" means a not‑for‑profit corporation in Illinois that (i) is exempt from the payment of federal income tax pursuant to Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, (ii) is established for the purpose of providing legal services that include civil legal aid, (iii) employs 2 or more full‑time attorneys who are licensed to practice law in this State and who directly provide civil legal aid, and (iv) is in compliance with registration and filing requirements that are applicable under the Charitable Trust Act and the Solicitation for Charity Act.
    "Commission" means the Illinois Student Assistance Commission.
    "Committee" means the advisory committee created under Section 20 of this Act.
    "Eligible debt" means outstanding principal, interest, and related fees from loans obtained for undergraduate, graduate, or law school educational expenses made by government or commercial lending institutions or educational institutions. "Eligible debt" excludes loans made by a private individual or family member.
    "IGAC attorney" means a full‑time employee of the Illinois Guardianship and Advocacy Commission, including the Office of State Guardian, the Legal Advocacy Service, and the Human Rights Authority, who is continually licensed to practice law and provides legal representation to carry out the responsibilities of the Illinois Guardianship and Advocacy Commission.
    "Legislative attorney" means a full‑time employee of the Illinois Senate, the Illinois House of Representatives, or the Illinois Legislative Reference Bureau who is continually licensed to practice law and provides legal advice to members of the General Assembly.
    "Program" means the Public Interest Attorney Loan Repayment Assistance Program.
    "Public interest attorney" means an attorney practicing in Illinois who is an assistant State's Attorney, assistant Public Defender, civil legal aid attorney, assistant Attorney General, assistant public guardian, IGAC attorney, or legislative attorney.
    "Qualifying employer" means (i) an Illinois State's Attorney or the State's Attorneys Appellate Prosecutor, (ii) an Illinois Public Defender or the State Appellate Defender, (iii) an Illinois civil legal aid organization, (iv) the Illinois Attorney General, (v) an Illinois public guardian, (vi) the Illinois Guardianship and Advocacy Commission, (vii) the Illinois Senate, (viii) the Illinois House of Representatives, or (ix) the Illinois Legislative Reference Bureau.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/20)
    Sec. 20. Public Interest Attorney Loan Repayment Assistance Program.
    (a) The Commission shall establish and administer the Program for the primary purpose of providing loan repayment assistance to practicing attorneys to encourage them to pursue careers as public interest attorneys to protect the rights of this State's most vulnerable citizens or provide quality enforcement of State law. The Commission shall create an advisory committee composed of representatives from organizations with relevant expertise, including one person from each of the following entities:
        (1) The Illinois State's Attorneys Association.
        (2) An office of an Illinois Public Defender.
        (3) An office of an Illinois public guardian.
        (4) The Office of the Illinois Attorney General.
        (5) An Illinois metropolitan bar association.
        (6) An Illinois statewide bar association.
        (7) A public law school in this State.
    (b) The Public Interest Attorney Loan Repayment Assistance Fund is created as a special fund in the State treasury. The Fund shall consist of all moneys remitted to the Commission under the terms of this Act. All money in the Fund shall be used, subject to appropriation, by the Commission for the purposes of this Act.
    (c) Subject to the availability of appropriations and subsections (d) and (e) of this Section, the Commission shall distribute funds to eligible applicants.
    (d) The Commission is authorized to prescribe all rules, policies, and procedures necessary or convenient for the administration of the Program and all terms and conditions applicable to payments made under this Act. This shall be done with the guidance and assistance of the Committee.
    (e) The Commission shall administer the Program, including, but not limited to, establishing and implementing the following:
        (1) An application process. Subject to the
     availability of appropriations, the Commission shall, each year, consider applications by eligible public interest attorneys for loan repayment assistance under the Program.
        (2) Eligibility requirements. The Commission shall,
     on an annual basis, receive and consider applications for loan repayment assistance under the Program if the Commission finds that the applicant:
            (i) is a citizen or permanent resident of the
         United States;
            (ii) is a licensed member of the Illinois Bar in
         good standing;
            (iii) has eligible debt in grace or repayment
         status; and
            (iv) is employed as a public interest attorney
         with a qualifying employer in Illinois.
        (3) A maximum amount of loan repayment assistance
     for each participant, which shall be $6,000 per year, up to a maximum of $30,000 during the participant's career.
        (4) Prioritization. The Commission shall develop
     criteria for prioritization among eligible applicants in the event that there are insufficient funds available to make payments to all eligible applicants under this Act. The prioritization criteria shall include the timeliness of the application, the applicant's salary level, the amount of the applicant's eligible debt, the availability of other loan repayment assistance to the applicant, the applicant's length of service as a public interest attorney, and the applicant's prior participation in the Program.
    (f) The distribution of funds available after
     administrative costs must be made by the Commission to eligible public interest attorneys in the following manner:
        (1) Loan repayment assistance must be in the form
     of a forgivable loan.
        (2) To have the loan forgiven, the participant
     shall (i) complete a year of employment with a qualifying employer and (ii) make educational debt payments (interest or principal or both) that equal at least the amount of assistance received under the Program during the assistance year.
        (3) Each loan must be documented by means of a
     promissory note executed by the borrower in a form provided by the Commission and shall be forgiven when an eligible participant meets the requirements set forth by the Commission.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/25)
    Sec. 25. Ineligibility and termination of funds; procedures.
    (a) If a participant becomes ineligible during the term of a loan, he or she must repay the outstanding amount of any loan received from the Commission.
    (b) The Commission may in its discretion forgive the loan of a participant in whole or in part in certain circumstances as set forth in its written policies and guidelines.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/30)
    Sec. 30. Other powers. The Commission may make, enter into, and execute contracts, agreements, leases, and other instruments with any person, including without limitation any federal, State, or local governmental agency, and may take other actions that may be necessary or convenient to accomplish any purpose authorized by this Act.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/90)
    Sec. 90. (Amendatory provisions; text omitted).
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10; text omitted.)

State Codes and Statutes

State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > Illinois > Chapter110 > 3145

    (110 ILCS 916/1)
    Sec. 1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the Public Interest Attorney Assistance Act.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/5)
    Sec. 5. Legislative findings. The General Assembly finds the following:
        (1) Equal access to justice is a basic right that is
     fundamental to democracy in this State, and the integrity of this State and this State's justice system depends on protecting and enforcing the rights of all people and quality enforcement of the laws of this State.
        (2) Equal access to justice and quality enforcement
     of State laws are integral parts of the general public welfare.
        (3) Vulnerable and disadvantaged citizens of this
     State are unable to protect or enforce their rights without legal assistance from public interest attorneys.
        (4) Graduating law students and practicing attorneys
     are increasingly unable to continue in public interest attorney positions because of high student loan debt.
        (5) Assisting public interest attorneys with loan
     forgiveness is a major step toward ensuring quality legal representation for this State's most vulnerable citizens and quality enforcement of State law.
        (6) The collection and distribution of funds under
     this Act promotes justice and is in the public interest.
        (7) The use of funds for the purposes prescribed by
     this Act are in the public interest and consistent with providing equal access to justice and quality enforcement of State law.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/10)
    Sec. 10. Purpose. The purpose of this Act is to encourage qualified individuals to enter into and continue in employment in this State as assistant State's Attorneys, assistant Public Defenders, civil legal aid attorneys, assistant Attorneys General, assistant public guardians, IGAC attorneys, and legislative attorneys in a manner that protects the rights of this State's most vulnerable citizens or promotes the quality enforcement of State law.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/15)
    Sec. 15. Definitions. For the purposes of this Act:
    "Assistant State's Attorney" means a full‑time employee of a State's Attorney in Illinois or the State's Attorneys Appellate Prosecutor who is continually licensed to practice law and prosecutes or defends cases on behalf of the State or a county.
    "Assistant Attorney General" means a full‑time employee of the Illinois Attorney General who is continually licensed to practice law and prosecutes or defends cases on behalf of the State.
    "Assistant Public Defender" means a full‑time employee of a Public Defender in Illinois or the State Appellate Defender who is continually licensed to practice law and provides legal representation to indigent persons, as provided by statute.
    "Assistant public guardian" means a full‑time employee of a public guardian in Illinois who is continually licensed to practice law and provides legal representation pursuant to court appointment.
    "Civil legal aid" means free or reduced‑cost legal representation or advice to low‑income clients in non‑criminal matters.
    "Civil legal aid attorney" means an attorney who is continually licensed to practice law and is employed full time as an attorney at a civil legal aid organization in Illinois.
    "Civil legal aid organization" means a not‑for‑profit corporation in Illinois that (i) is exempt from the payment of federal income tax pursuant to Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, (ii) is established for the purpose of providing legal services that include civil legal aid, (iii) employs 2 or more full‑time attorneys who are licensed to practice law in this State and who directly provide civil legal aid, and (iv) is in compliance with registration and filing requirements that are applicable under the Charitable Trust Act and the Solicitation for Charity Act.
    "Commission" means the Illinois Student Assistance Commission.
    "Committee" means the advisory committee created under Section 20 of this Act.
    "Eligible debt" means outstanding principal, interest, and related fees from loans obtained for undergraduate, graduate, or law school educational expenses made by government or commercial lending institutions or educational institutions. "Eligible debt" excludes loans made by a private individual or family member.
    "IGAC attorney" means a full‑time employee of the Illinois Guardianship and Advocacy Commission, including the Office of State Guardian, the Legal Advocacy Service, and the Human Rights Authority, who is continually licensed to practice law and provides legal representation to carry out the responsibilities of the Illinois Guardianship and Advocacy Commission.
    "Legislative attorney" means a full‑time employee of the Illinois Senate, the Illinois House of Representatives, or the Illinois Legislative Reference Bureau who is continually licensed to practice law and provides legal advice to members of the General Assembly.
    "Program" means the Public Interest Attorney Loan Repayment Assistance Program.
    "Public interest attorney" means an attorney practicing in Illinois who is an assistant State's Attorney, assistant Public Defender, civil legal aid attorney, assistant Attorney General, assistant public guardian, IGAC attorney, or legislative attorney.
    "Qualifying employer" means (i) an Illinois State's Attorney or the State's Attorneys Appellate Prosecutor, (ii) an Illinois Public Defender or the State Appellate Defender, (iii) an Illinois civil legal aid organization, (iv) the Illinois Attorney General, (v) an Illinois public guardian, (vi) the Illinois Guardianship and Advocacy Commission, (vii) the Illinois Senate, (viii) the Illinois House of Representatives, or (ix) the Illinois Legislative Reference Bureau.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/20)
    Sec. 20. Public Interest Attorney Loan Repayment Assistance Program.
    (a) The Commission shall establish and administer the Program for the primary purpose of providing loan repayment assistance to practicing attorneys to encourage them to pursue careers as public interest attorneys to protect the rights of this State's most vulnerable citizens or provide quality enforcement of State law. The Commission shall create an advisory committee composed of representatives from organizations with relevant expertise, including one person from each of the following entities:
        (1) The Illinois State's Attorneys Association.
        (2) An office of an Illinois Public Defender.
        (3) An office of an Illinois public guardian.
        (4) The Office of the Illinois Attorney General.
        (5) An Illinois metropolitan bar association.
        (6) An Illinois statewide bar association.
        (7) A public law school in this State.
    (b) The Public Interest Attorney Loan Repayment Assistance Fund is created as a special fund in the State treasury. The Fund shall consist of all moneys remitted to the Commission under the terms of this Act. All money in the Fund shall be used, subject to appropriation, by the Commission for the purposes of this Act.
    (c) Subject to the availability of appropriations and subsections (d) and (e) of this Section, the Commission shall distribute funds to eligible applicants.
    (d) The Commission is authorized to prescribe all rules, policies, and procedures necessary or convenient for the administration of the Program and all terms and conditions applicable to payments made under this Act. This shall be done with the guidance and assistance of the Committee.
    (e) The Commission shall administer the Program, including, but not limited to, establishing and implementing the following:
        (1) An application process. Subject to the
     availability of appropriations, the Commission shall, each year, consider applications by eligible public interest attorneys for loan repayment assistance under the Program.
        (2) Eligibility requirements. The Commission shall,
     on an annual basis, receive and consider applications for loan repayment assistance under the Program if the Commission finds that the applicant:
            (i) is a citizen or permanent resident of the
         United States;
            (ii) is a licensed member of the Illinois Bar in
         good standing;
            (iii) has eligible debt in grace or repayment
         status; and
            (iv) is employed as a public interest attorney
         with a qualifying employer in Illinois.
        (3) A maximum amount of loan repayment assistance
     for each participant, which shall be $6,000 per year, up to a maximum of $30,000 during the participant's career.
        (4) Prioritization. The Commission shall develop
     criteria for prioritization among eligible applicants in the event that there are insufficient funds available to make payments to all eligible applicants under this Act. The prioritization criteria shall include the timeliness of the application, the applicant's salary level, the amount of the applicant's eligible debt, the availability of other loan repayment assistance to the applicant, the applicant's length of service as a public interest attorney, and the applicant's prior participation in the Program.
    (f) The distribution of funds available after
     administrative costs must be made by the Commission to eligible public interest attorneys in the following manner:
        (1) Loan repayment assistance must be in the form
     of a forgivable loan.
        (2) To have the loan forgiven, the participant
     shall (i) complete a year of employment with a qualifying employer and (ii) make educational debt payments (interest or principal or both) that equal at least the amount of assistance received under the Program during the assistance year.
        (3) Each loan must be documented by means of a
     promissory note executed by the borrower in a form provided by the Commission and shall be forgiven when an eligible participant meets the requirements set forth by the Commission.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/25)
    Sec. 25. Ineligibility and termination of funds; procedures.
    (a) If a participant becomes ineligible during the term of a loan, he or she must repay the outstanding amount of any loan received from the Commission.
    (b) The Commission may in its discretion forgive the loan of a participant in whole or in part in certain circumstances as set forth in its written policies and guidelines.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/30)
    Sec. 30. Other powers. The Commission may make, enter into, and execute contracts, agreements, leases, and other instruments with any person, including without limitation any federal, State, or local governmental agency, and may take other actions that may be necessary or convenient to accomplish any purpose authorized by this Act.
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10.)

    (110 ILCS 916/90)
    Sec. 90. (Amendatory provisions; text omitted).
(Source: P.A. 96‑615, eff. 1‑1‑10; 96‑768, eff. 1‑1‑10; text omitted.)

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