(705 ILCS 95/15)
Access to Justice Fund.
(a) The Access to Justice Fund is created as a special fund in the State treasury. Moneys in the Access to Justice Fund shall be appropriated to the Attorney General for disbursements to the Foundation. The Foundation shall use the moneys to make grants and distributions for the administration of the pilot programs created under this Act. Grants or distributions made under this Act to the Foundation are subject to the requirements of the Illinois Grant Funds Recovery Act.
(b) In accordance with the requirements of the Illinois Equal Justice Act, the Foundation may make grants, enter into contracts, and take other actions recommended by the Council to effectuate the pilot programs and comply with the other requirements of this Act.
(c) The governing board of the Foundation must prepare and submit an annual report to the Governor, the President of the Senate, the Minority Leader of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Minority Leader of the House of Representatives, and the Justices of the Illinois Supreme Court. The report must include: (i) a statement of the total receipts and a breakdown by source during each of the previous 2 calendar years; (ii) a list of the names and addresses of the recipients that are currently receiving grants or distributions and that received grants or distributions in the previous year and the amounts committed to recipients for the current year and paid in the previous year; (iii) a breakdown of the amounts of grants or distributions paid during the previous year to recipients and the amounts committed to each recipient for the current year; (iv) a breakdown of the Foundation's costs in administering the Fund; (v) a statement of the Fund balance at the start and at the close of the previous year and the interest earned during the previous year; and (vi) any notices the Foundation issued denying applications for grants or distributions under this Act. The report, in its entirety, is a public record, and the Foundation and the Governor shall make the report available for inspection upon request.
(d) The Foundation may annually retain a portion of the disbursements it receives under this Section to reimburse the Foundation for the actual cost of administering the Council and for making the grants and distributions pursuant to this Act during that year.
(e) No moneys distributed by the Foundation from the Access to Justice Fund may be directly or indirectly used for lobbying activities, as defined in Section 2 of the Lobbyist Registration Act or as defined in any ordinance or resolution of a municipality, county, or other unit of local government in Illinois.
(f) The Foundation 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.
(g) The Foundation has the authority to receive and accept any and all grants, loans, subsidies, matching funds, reimbursements, federal grant moneys, fees for services, and other things of value from the federal or State government or any agency of any other state or from any institution, person, firm, or corporation, public or private, to be used to carry out the purposes of this Act.
(Source: P.A. 99-281, eff. 8-5-15; 100-987, eff. 7-1-19