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Bar Foundation to Present Check to Legal Aid

The Board of Directors of the Montgomery Bar Foundation, at a meeting held on February 24th at the Montgomery Bar Association, unanimously elected to grant Legal Aid of Southeastern Pennsylvania with a check for $25,000 to cover operating costs in light of the recent drop in interest rates and current economic shortfalls.

The Bar Foundation will also be donating an extra $5,000 to help cover the costs of a legal needs assessment, a periodic evaluation required by the Federal government to determine the responsiveness of the program as it pertains to the needs of the community.  The North Penn Community Health Foundation will provide an additional matching grant of $5,000.

In recent years, the Bar Foundation has granted funds to the Montgomery Child Advocacy Project (MCAP), which provides free legal representation and services to children in Montgomery County who are victims of abuse and neglect.  However, Legal Aid has an estimated loss of $500,000 this year, nearly 11% of its budget, due to the national drop in interest rates.  This drop has reduced funding available from the Pennsylvania Interest on Lawyer Trust Accounts (IOLTA) program, one of Legal Aid’s major benefactors.  Legal Aid provides pro bono legal representation to low-income families and individuals.

The Montgomery Bar Foundation will present the check at the upcoming Montgomery Bar Association Board of Directors meeting on March 26, 2009 at the Bar Association building.