The Hennepin County Attorney's Office 2022 Proposed Budget
On October 28, as part of the annual budget presentation given to the Hennepin County Board of Commissioners, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman provided the proposed 2022 budget, with a 4.4 percent property tax levy increase. The annual budget exceeds $65 million and includes 500 FTEs.
Freeman also delivered an address highlighting the important initiatives and objectives of the office.
“The dedicated staff in our office have been pushed to their max, taking on a tremendous work and caseload to address the backlog of cases caused by the pandemic,” Freeman said in a separate statement.
“We continue to do good work, though it has become increasingly difficult to retain attorneys who are bogged down by the sheer number of cases they have. This is one of the reasons we are requesting an increase in budget to help address this matter.”
In addition to the proposed budget, Freeman discussed the disparity reduction efforts and race and equity initiatives of the office. A few examples:
- In February 2021, Vernona Boswell appointed as the office’s first Director of Race & Equity.
- The Victim Services division, which has BIPOC advocates who are able to culturally connect with victims and witnesses they serve
- The Summer internship program for which students from North High School and Roosevelt High School worked in the office on various projects and met with BIPOC leaders in Hennepin County.
- The law clerk program for which there has been a 42 percent increase in BIPOC clerks over the past three years.
- The Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) initiative with a mission to identify and implement policy changes, and to mobilize resources to help prevent the removal of Native American children-consistent with the spirit and intent of ICWA-while following through on the county’s obligation to keep children safe.
“It is the responsibility of our office to ensure we serve justice. In order to do so, we must continue to push forward and create an atmosphere that fosters diversity and equality,” Freeman stated. “I am proud of the work of this office, and look forward to what we’re able to accomplish in the coming year.”
View the budget from our office (PDF).
You can also watch the presentation on the Hennepin County website.