ILNews

Applicants sought for $90,000 in grant funds

Rebecca Berfanger
January 1, 2008
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The Heartland Pro Bono Council, which serves Boone, Hamilton, Hancock, Hendricks, Johnson, Marion, Morgan, and Shelby counties in central Indiana, received a cy pres award of more than $65,000 late last year and the organization is looking to distribute the money in the upcoming months.

That amount, along with other funds the HPBC has received in cy pres monies in recent years - totaling $90,000 - will be given in one grant or multiple grants sometime after June 5, 2008.

Heartland is currently seeking applicants from organizations around central Indiana that would help to serve the legal needs of the poor through new or continuing programs. Click here to be redirected to the request for proposals, and the preliminary application form, due March 7.

Heartland Executive Director Laurie Boyd encourages applicants to call her directly if they have questions. She can be reached at (317) 631-9410, ext. 2267, or by e-mail, Laurie.Boyd@ilsi.net.

Once the proposals are reviewed, finalists will be invited to submit a full grant application. These requests will be sent March 31. Applicants who receive invitations to submit full grant applications will have until May 9 to return their full grant application. The board is scheduled to meet June 5 and announce the grantees following that meeting.

"We're looking to find innovative ideas," said Heartland treasurer Sheila Jenkins.

Applicants must also show sustainability of their proposed programs, with the understanding that this is a one-time gift; there is no guarantee Heartland will receive more cy pres awards in the future.

Cy pres, which means "near to" in Latin, is an award that is made up of funds that are not distributed to parties in a class action lawsuit because not all parties in the class can be located. Either both sides agree or a judge decides who will receive the cy pres award.

In this instance, a case in the U.S. District Court for the District of Northern Indiana, Darrell Bruce v. Grieger's Motor Sales, Inc. and Capital One Auto Finance, No. 2:05-CV-230, Bruce and other plaintiffs in the class action had received a notice in the mail about how their credit revealed that they could get auto loans.

In the class settlement agreement, dated Nov. 21, 2006, defendants were to pay the sum of $313,947.50. The cy pres money was granted in an order from the court, signed by Judge Rudy Lozano and dated June 13, 2007.

In the defendants' report on the distribution of settlement funds, dated Sept. 10, 2007, including checks that were uncashed and undeliverable, along with $24.67 in excess funds in the account, the cy pres amount came to a grand total of $65,787.07. The check to the cy pres recipient, HPBC, was received Aug. 24, 2007.

To learn more information, read the story about the grant in Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2008, edition of the Indiana Lawyer.
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