2003 Annual Report of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission
Table of Contents
To the Honorable, the Chief Justice
The annual report of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission for 2003 is submitted to the Court, to the members of the Bar of Illinois, and to the public in accordance with Supreme Court Rule 751.
The report is a statement of activities of the Commission for calendar year 2003 and an accounting and audit of the monies received and expended during the twelve-month period, which ended December 31, 2003.
Benedict Schwarz II, Chairman
Mary Robinson, Administrator
The Master Roll of attorneys registered to practice law in Illinois for the year 2003 contained the names of 76,671 attorneys as of October 31, 2003. After that date, the Commission began the 2004 registration process, so that the total reported as of October 31, 2003, does not include the 1,840 attorneys who first took their oath of office in November or December 2003.
The 2003 registration figures show a modest 1.7% increase in the number of lawyers registered in Illinois, a continuing but still gradual easing of the 2000 and 2001 registration experience, when the number of registered lawyers remained virtually static. The number of newly admitted lawyers rose slightly, and the number of lawyers who left the rolls due to retirement, death, discipline, or failure to register dropped, continuing the decrease in that figure from the 2000 high of 2,407. (Since 2000, the number of lawyers removed from the roll was 1,986 in 2001, 1,596 in 2002, and 1,332 for 2003.) Nevertheless, judging from the fact that there was a 14% increase in the number of lawyers who decided to register under inactive status (6,598 for 2002 and 7,535 for 2003), it would appear that the number of lawyers actually practicing in Illinois remains basically unchanged.
Chart A shows further demographic information for attorneys registered in 2003, and Chart B shows the breakdown by the registration categories set forth in Rule 756.
Chart A: Age, Gender and Years in Practice for Attorneys Registered in 2003
Chart B: Registration Categories for 2003
Charts C and D show the distribution by judicial circuit and by county of the 58,811 registered attorneys who report a principal business address in Illinois. Another 17,860 attorneys report a business address outside Illinois, but register as either active and able to practice in Illinois or inactive. Those 17,860 attorneys are not included in Charts C and D. Cook County has over 70% of the lawyers who have an Illinois business address. Of the 102 counties, 26 counties saw no change, 41 experienced some increase and 35 saw a slight decrease. Of the counties with 100 or more lawyers, the greatest increase over 2002 was seen in Madison (8.5%), Will (4.4%), McLean (2.6%), Lake and Peoria (2.4%), Kane (2.2%) and McHenry (2.0%), compared with a 1.5% increase in Cook County.
Chart C: Registration by Judicial Districts: 1999-2003
Chart D: Registered Attorneys by County for 2002-2003
Voluntary Disclosure of Race and Practice Setting
As part of the 2004 annual registration, the Commission asked Illinois lawyers to voluntarily provide information about their race and practice setting. Recognizing competing views on whether the information should be collected, the Commission decided to make the request in light of the scarcity of data available from other sources and the importance of being able to assess how Commission policies impact upon identifiable segments of the lawyer population. The Commission pledged that any information reported would be maintained separately from registration or disciplinary data, in such a way that it would be accessible only to computer staff for purposes of demographic studies directed by the Commission, and that no Commission staff who work on disciplinary cases would be able to access the data on race or practice setting.
About one-third of the lawyers who registered for 2004 volunteered the data, which is summarized in the chart following. Due to the response rate and because the responses are not random, it is unclear that the data is statistically reliable. The Commission compared the 2004 registration survey data to other information gathered in a telephone survey reported in the 2002 Annual Report, and in the malpractice survey conducted in conjunction with the 2001 annual registration. While racial breakdown appears to be largely consistent with the telephone survey data, practice setting data suggests that solo practitioners responded in the 2004 registration survey in higher proportion than their actual number in the legal profession, whereas government lawyers responded in lesser proportion.
The Commission appreciates the willingness of the 25,606 lawyers who responded to provide this information. The data has been stored as promised and will remain inaccessible for any purpose other than demographic analysis as directed by the Commission.
During 2003, the Commission docketed 6,325 investigations, the third consecutive year that the caseload has increased and a nearly 9% increase since 2001. Those 6,325 investigations involved charges against 4,166 different attorneys. This means that about 5% of all registered attorneys became the subject of an investigation in 2003. Nearly a quarter of the 4,166 attorneys were the subject of more than one investigation docketed in 2003, as shown in Chart 1.
Charts 2 and 3 report the classification of investigations docketed in 2003, based on an initial assessment of the nature of the misconduct alleged, if any, and the type of legal context in which the facts apparently arose. Chart 2 reflects that the most frequent areas of a grievance are: neglect of the client’s cause, failure to communicate with the client, fraudulent or deceptive activity, excessive fees, and improper management of trust funds. Consistent with prior years, the top areas of practice most likely to lead to a grievance of attorney misconduct are: criminal law, domestic relations, tort, and real estate, as shown in Chart 3.
Chart 2: Classification of Charges Docketed in 2003 by Violation Alleged
Chart 3: Classification of Charges Docketed in 2003 by Area of Law
If an investigation fails to reveal sufficiently serious, provable misconduct, the Administrator will close the investigation. If an investigation produces evidence of serious misconduct, the case is referred to the Inquiry Board, unless the matter is filed directly with the Supreme Court under Rules 761, 762(a), or 763. The Inquiry Board operates in panels of three, composed of two attorneys and one nonlawyer, all appointed by the Commission. An Inquiry Board panel has authority to vote a formal complaint if it finds sufficient evidence to support a charge, to close an investigation if it does not so find, or to place an attorney on supervision under the direction of the panel pursuant to Commission Rule 108. The Administrator cannot pursue formal charges without authorization by an Inquiry Board panel.
About 7% of investigations concluded in 2003 resulted in the filing of formal charges. Charts 4 and 5 show the number of investigations docketed and terminated during 2003, and the type of actions which terminated the investigations.
Chart 4: Investigations Docketed: 1999-2003
Chart 5: Investigations Concluded in 2003
Once an Inquiry Board panel authorizes the filing of charges, a formal complaint setting forth all allegations of misconduct pending against the attorney is filed, and the matter proceeds before the Hearing Board. The Hearing Board functions much like a trial court in a civil case and is comprised of three panel members, two lawyers and one nonlawyer, appointed by the Commission. Upon filing and service of the complaint, the case becomes public. In addition to complaints alleging misconduct filed pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 753, and complaints alleging conviction of a criminal offense under Rule 761, the Hearing Board also entertains petitions for reinstatement pursuant to Rule 767, petitions for transfer to inactive status because of impairment pursuant to Rule 758, and petitions for restoration to active status pursuant to Rule 759.
Chart 6 shows the activity before the Hearing Board in 2003. There were 141 cases added to the Hearing Board’s docket in 2003. Of those, 132 were initiated by the filing of a new disciplinary complaint, as compared to 118 new complaints filed in 2002.
Chart 6: Matters Before the Hearing Board in 2003
Chart 7 shows the years in practice of the 132 lawyers who were the subject of a formal complaint in 2003.
Charts 8 and 9 show the types of misconduct alleged in the 132 disciplinary complaints filed during 2003 and the areas of practice in which the alleged misconduct arose. In large part, the categories most frequently seen in formal complaints track the categories most frequently seen in the initial charges, as reported in Charts 2 and 3. There was a noticeable increase over 2002 in the number of cases alleging falsifying evidence or making false statements to a tribunal, excessive or unauthorized fees, misrepresentation to third persons and pursing/filing frivolous claims or pleadings.
Chart 8: Types of Misconduct Alleged in Complaints Filed Before Hearing Board in 2003
Chart 9: Area of Law Involved in Complaints Filed Before Hearing Board in 2003
Chart 10 shows the type of action by which the Hearing Board concluded 125 cases during 2003.
Chart 10: Actions Taken by Hearing Board in Matters Terminated in 2003
Once the Hearing Board files its report in a case, either party may file exceptions before the Review Board, which serves as an appellate tribunal. Chart 11 shows activity at the Review Board during 2003.
Chart 11: Trend of Matters in the Review Board in 2003
The Supreme Court has sole authority to sanction attorneys for misconduct, except for a Board reprimand which can be imposed in a disciplinary case without order of the Court by either the Hearing or Review Board. In 2003, the Hearing Board administered four reprimands (see Chart 10). Other than Board reprimands, the Hearing and Review Board reports are recommendations to the Supreme Court. During 2003, the Court entered 137 sanctions against 137 attorneys. Chart 12 reflects the nature of the orders entered. More than half of the sanctions were entered pursuant to consent petitions. Of the 37 disbarments, 31 were by consent petition.
Chart 12: Disciplinary Sanctions Ordered by the Supreme Court in 2003
The Court issued opinions recently in two disciplinary cases: In re Leonard T. Timpone, Docket No. 93178 (Jan. 23, 2004) and In re Mary Elizabeth Gorecki, Docket No. 96299 (Nov. 20, 2003). The Timpone and Gorecki opinions can be found on the Commission web site at www.iardc.org.
Timpone, licensed since 1970, had been charged with obtaining an improper loan from a client and improperly handling and converting the funds of another client. The Hearing and Review Boards recommended disbarment for Timpone, who had been suspended for three years in 1993, for conversion and other misconduct, and censured in 1994, for his conviction for failure to timely file a tax return. The issues raised by Timpone on appeal were whether an attorney-client relationship still existed at the time Timpone obtained the loan and whether disbarment was the appropriate sanction. While the Hearing Board found that Timpone was not performing any legal services for the client at the exact time the loan transaction took place, the Court agreed with the Hearing Board that the attorney-client relationship continued due to the client’s belief that Timpone was his lawyer, not his friend, the fact that the loan took place upon the request of Timpone, within weeks of Timpone’s completion of the legal work for the client, and the fact that the funds loaned to Timpone were generated by the legal work Timpone performed on the client’s behalf. As for the appropriate sanction, a majority of the Court imposed a 42-month suspension and until further order of the Court, effective March 26, 2001, the date of his interim suspension pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 774. Taking into account Timpone’s recidivism, the Court imposed the “until further of court” condition thereby placing on Timpone the burden to show rehabilitation if he ever sought reinstatement. The Court rejected disbarment because Timpone’s misconduct did not show the corrupt motives and moral turpitude that would warrant disbarment. The dissent concluded that disbarment was warranted based on Timpone’s prior discipline.
Gorecki was charged with stating or implying an ability to improperly influence a tribunal or governmental body, engaging in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation and engaging in conduct that tends to defeat the administration of justice or bring the courts or legal profession into disrepute. Gorecki, licensed since 1991, was in private practice when she left phone messages on a telephone answering machine of the sister of a long-time friend of respondent who was seeking help in finding a job for the woman’s boyfriend. Gorecki falsely stated in those messages that the head of the Kane County board could be improperly influenced into providing a county job. The issue on appeal was the appropriate length of suspension. A majority of the Hearing Board recommended six months suspension but the Review Board recommended two months suspension. While recognizing the seriousness of Gorecki’s misconduct, the Court, balanced in mitigation against the misconduct the fact that Gorecki had committed no crime, took no money or took no action to further a bribery or kickback scheme and the fact that she had no prior discipline. Under these circumstances, the Court determined that a suspension of four months was appropriate.
Disciplinary cases reach the Court in several ways. Chart 13 reflects the actions taken by the Supreme Court in disciplinary matters in varying procedural contexts in which those matters are presented.
Chart 13: Orders Entered by Supreme Court in Disciplinary Cases in 2003
Chart 14 tracks the type of misconduct that led to the 141 sanctions entered in 2003. Chart 15 provides demographic information on the 141 lawyers disciplined in 2003 (the 137 attorneys sanctioned by the Supreme Court as well as the four attorneys who were reprimanded by the Hearing Board).
Chart 14: Misconduct Committed in the 141 Disciplinary Cases Decided in 2003*
Chart 15: County of Practice
In addition to activity in disciplinary cases, the Supreme Court entertains pleadings in non-disciplinary matters that affect an attorney’s status. Chart 16 reflects the orders entered in such cases during 2003.
Chart 16: Non-Disciplinary Actions by the Supreme Court for 2003
Chart 17: Caseload Trends: 1991-2003
Effective April 1, 2004, the Court amended Supreme Court Rule 771, Types of Discipline, by renumbering it as Rule 770, and adopted a new Rule 771, Finality of Orders and Effective Date of Discipline. New Rule 771 changes former practice whereby all orders of discipline were effective immediately, to provide for a 21 day delay in the effective date of orders imposing definite suspensions and any type of suspension that will be stayed in part by probation. The period will give lawyers who are being suspended a window of time to tie up their practices. Under new Rule 771, orders imposing disbarment, interim suspension, and suspension until further order of the Court, sanctions typically imposed where a lawyer poses a continuing threat to the public, will continue to be effective immediately unless the Court specifically orders a delay in effective date, as will orders imposing censure or reprimands, where a lawyer’s practice will not be disrupted.
On February 11, 2004, the Supreme Court adopted Supreme Court Rules 716 and 717, which take effect on July 1, 2004. Under new Rule 716, a lawyer admitted to the practice of law in another state or the District of Columbia may receive a limited license to practice law in this state when the lawyer is employed in Illinois as house counsel exclusively for a single corporation, partnership, association or other legal entity (as well as any parent, subsidiary or affiliate thereof), whose lawful business consists of activities other than the practice of law or the provision of legal services. Application is made to the Board of Admissions to the Bar, practice is limited to legal services provided to the employer, and the lawyer becomes subject to the jurisdiction of the Court for disciplinary purposes. Any lawyer not licensed in this state who is employed as house counsel in Illinois on the effective date of this rule shall not be deemed to have been engaged in the unauthorized practice of law in Illinois prior to licensure under this rule if application for the license is made within the time prescribed by the rule.
Similarly, new Rule 717 allows a lawyer admitted to the practice of law in another state or the District of Columbia, who meets the educational requirements of Rule 703, to receive a limited license to practice law in this state, on a temporary basis, when the lawyer is employed in Illinois for an organized legal service, public defender or law school clinical program providing legal assistance to indigent persons, until the lawyer attains admission to the Illinois Bar.
Rule 706 was amended to reflect the addition of Rules 716 and 717 to add the application fees to be paid by those registered under these rules.
On March 15, 2004, the Supreme amended Supreme Court Rule 722 to provide that evidence of minimum insurance for legal entities on the application for registration or renewal pursuant to Rule 721 can be done by means of an affidavit or a verification by certification under section 1–109 of the Code of Civil Procedure of an authorized shareholder, member, or partner that his or her firm maintains the minimum insurance required by this rule. The Application for Certificate of Registration to Practice Pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 721 can be obtained from the Court’s website at www.state.il.us/court/SupremeCourt/Prof_Serv/default.htm.
The 2002 Annual Report described the results of a survey of Illinois lawyers and a survey of members of the adjudicatory boards that serve the Commission to discern perceptions of the extent to which race impacts upon the disciplinary system. While about three-quarters of all lawyers surveyed thought that the disciplinary system is “very fair” or “somewhat fair,” black lawyers more often than white lawyers chose “somewhat fair” as opposed to “very fair,” and substantially more black lawyers than white lawyers felt that race plays a part in the investigation and discipline of Illinois lawyers. Board members overwhelmingly reported the belief that the race of the respondent did not improperly affect discipline. (2002 Annual Report of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission, pp. 16 – 18)
As a follow-up to those surveys, the Commission directed that demographic data for lawyers disciplined from 1998 through 2002 be gathered and analyzed. Inquiries were posed to staff and others involved in the cases to learn the race of each of those 519 attorneys,1 the setting in which they were practicing at the time the misconduct occurred, and any information about impairments that surfaced during the proceedings.
The charts below show the racial breakdown of the 519 respondent-lawyers disciplined over those five years, and what sanctions were imposed in what proportion for each racial group and for the full group of lawyers disciplined over those five years.
Race of Lawyers Sanctioned 1998 – 2002
1 The study excluded 110 lawyers who were reciprocally disciplined under Rule 763, based upon sanctions imposed in another jurisdiction in which they were licensed. Those cases involve no discretionary decision to prosecute by Commission staff. In addition, the information available in such matters is typically only that transmitted by the other state, so that race would be impossible to identify in most such cases.
Sanctions Imposed 1998 – 2002, By Race of Respondent
2 20 of the 519 attorneys sanctioned from 1998 through 2002 were disciplined more than once during those years. Only the most severe sanction imposed upon each of those lawyers has been included in this chart.
The chart below shows the practice setting at the time misconduct occurred, by percentage, for all lawyers sanctioned from 1998 through 2002, and the breakdown for each racial group. As an indicator of how the sanctioned lawyers compare with the entire population of Illinois lawyers, the chart also reflects data gathered in a survey conducted in connection with the 2001 annual registration showing practice settings reported by the over 60,000 attorneys (80%) who responded to that survey. (2001 Annual Report of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission, p. 6)
Practice Setting for Lawyers Sanctioned 1998 – 2002
For all races, the percentage of sanctioned lawyers who were sole practitioners at the time of the misconduct far exceeds the percentage of Illinois lawyers who practice as solos. That is consistent with experience in other jurisdictions that have studied similar data. It is also predictable in light of the misconduct charged in most discipline cases, which is overwhelmingly neglect of clients’ matters and mishandling of funds. By nature, a solo practice has fewer safety nets. There are no other lawyers watching over cases; there are often few, if any, support staff; and office systems tend to be less sophisticated, if they exist at all. As importantly, clientele of a solo practice tend to be individuals, often of lesser means, who have little leverage if a lawyer fails to live up to their expectations and are thus significantly more likely to complain to the Commission than would, for instance, a major corporate client of a large firm.
Another facet frequently seen in discipline cases is that the respondent-attorney is impaired by addiction to alcohol or other substances or suffers some mental disease or disorder. For that reason, staff were asked to identify impairments asserted by the respondents or otherwise identified in the cases of the 519 disciplined attorneys, whether or not the condition was diagnosed or fully admitted by the respondent. The chart below shows the impairments that were identified, broken down for each racial group. There were no impairments identified in connection with any of the lawyers who were Asian or Hispanic or whose race was unknown, and so those groups were condensed into “Others” for this chart.
Impairments Identified for Attorneys Sanctioned 1998 – 2002, By Race of Respondent
Effective April 1, 2003, Commission Rule 510, was amended raising the maximum payment on any single claim from $10,000 to $25,000, and raising the aggregate limit on claims arising from the conduct of any one attorney from $100,000 to $250,000. As noted more fully in the Financial Report at page 21, the Commission raised the caps because those limits were among the lowest in the nation and they restricted too severely the reimbursements that the Program could allow to claimants who were most affected by the dishonest conduct of disciplined attorneys. The $25,000 claim cap is still only one-half of the national median.
In 2003, the program approved 70 claims totaling $499,810, involving 31 Illinois attorneys who had been disciplined. The number and size of the 2003 approvals reflected an increase over the Program’s experience in 2002, during which the Commission approved 57 claims totaling $215,564. If the 2002 caps were still in place, 2003 awards would have totaled $324,000. The Commission continues to manage carefully Program financial issues, as claims continue to increase in number and size, which appears consistent with the increase in the disciplinary caseload.
Chart 18 provides information on the claims approved between 2000 and 2003. A summary of the claims received in 2003 appears in Chart 19.
Chart 18: Summary of Approved Claims
Chart 19: Classification of Approved Client Protection Claims in 2003
The Commission’s Ethics Inquiry Program is a telephone inquiry service that allows Illinois attorneys and members of the public to call for help in resolving hypothetical questions about ethical dilemmas, the Illinois Rules of Professional Conduct and the Rules of the Commission. No legal opinion or binding advisory opinion is given. The Ethics Inquiry Program continues to handle over 3,000 calls from attorneys each year. This figure does not include calls received from nonlawyers. To make an inquiry, please call the Commission offices in Chicago (312-565-2600) or Springfield (217-522-6838). Additional information about the program can be obtained from the Commission website at www.iardc.org.
Since November 1996, the Commission has sponsored a seminar on law office management issues and ethical obligations of lawyers. The seminar is held three times a year for lawyers who are required to attend as part of their disciplinary sanctions or who attend voluntarily. Any attorney interested in learning more about the Professionalism Seminar, may call the Commission in Chicago at 312-565-2600, or consult the Commission web site at www.iardc.org.
In October 2001, the Commission launched the Commission web site (www.iardc.org). The web site includes the Master Roll of Attorneys in Illinois, which enables the user to search the Master Roll for certain basic, public registration information, including business address, and public disciplinary information about Illinois lawyers. In the near future, a feature will be added to allow lawyers to update on-line their registration address. Also, the site presently contains recently filed disciplinary sanction orders issued by the Supreme Court, Hearing Board and Review Board reports, the schedule of hearings in public disciplinary cases, as well as the Rules of Professional Conduct. The site will soon include a searchable database of disciplinary decisions.
The Commission continued its efforts to familiarize attorneys with the ethics rules and concerns by having its legal staff make more than 100 presentations to bar associations, law firms, law schools, continuing legal education seminars and civic groups. Any group interested in having a Commission representative speak to their group, may call Mary F. Andreoni, Administrative Counsel, ARDC, Chicago.
John W. Rapp, Jr. Named as Chair
John W. Rapp, Jr. was appointed to serve as chair of the Review Board in January 2004. He is a retired judge from Carroll County. Justice Rapp served as a circuit judge in Carroll County beginning in 1970, and was Chief Judge of the 15th Circuit Court from 1982 until 1998, when he was appointed to the Illinois Appellate Court for the Second District. He was admitted in 1965 and received his J.D. from Loyola University, Chicago. Justice Rapp has been a member of the Review Board since January 2002. He replaces Leonard F. Amari who served as chair of the Review Board since 2001. Mr. Amari, whose term expires December 31, 2004, continues as a member of the Review Board.
Retirement of James E. Caldwell
On December 31, 2003, James E. Caldwell concluded his term on the Review Board. He was a member of the Review Board since 1995. Admitted to practice law in Illinois in 1959, Mr. Caldwell began practice in a small firm, then served for many years as a senior tax attorney for Standard Oil. He later practiced in the firm of Caldwell & Hubbard PC and is now engaged in the general practice of law in Chicago. Mr. Caldwell was long active in attorney discipline, having served on the Chicago Bar Association Grievance Committees before the ARDC was created, and he also served on several ABA committees. He received his J.D. from Howard University.
Appointment of Daniel P. Duffy
Effective January 1, 2004, the Court appointed Daniel P. Duffy of Chicago to a three-year term to serve on the Review Board. Mr. Duffy heads a Chicago law firm. He received his J.D. from the University of Notre Dame in 1994. He was appointed to fill the vacancy left by the retirement of James E. Caldwell. His term expires December 31, 2006.
The Commission is carefully monitoring budgetary issues, particularly in light of the economic climate of the last few years which has resulted in declining revenues and increasing caseloads.
Historically, Commission revenues have climbed each year because of a growth in lawyer population. From 1990 through 1999, that growth averaged 2.9% per year. Between 2000 and 2003, the Illinois lawyer population grew at an average of only 1.1%. The diminution resulted as much from lawyers who formerly paid full fees leaving the rolls, as from reductions in the size of the classes of newly admitted lawyers, who pay no fee for their first year in practice and a reduced fee for the next two years. Along with increases in the number of lawyers who transferred to inactive status to be able to pay a lesser fee, the trends have significantly impacted revenues. For the last few years, Commission revenues have fallen below what the Commission had predicted in 2000, when it sought an increase in the annual fee to fund operations. For 2003, actual revenues fell over $900,000 short of what had been predicted.
Controls on spending have thus far allowed the Commission to hold to the targeted reserve, but the growth in the caseload and related expenses, including the costs of funding the Client Protection Program, will put continuing pressure on spending.
For the third consecutive year, the investigative caseload grew, and for 2003, the number of formal discipline cases initiated (a substantially more costly aspect of the caseload) increased 12% over 2002. Those formal discipline cases increasingly involve substantial conversions of client funds, with a corresponding impact on the Client Protection Program. In 2004, the Commission decided to raise the cap to $25,000, still only half of the $50,000 national median, believing that, in these times of greater economic pressures resulting in greater losses to clients, the efficacy of the Client Protection Program is particularly important in the effort to restore public confidence in the legal profession.
For planning purposes, the Commission has generated budget projections adjusted to the realities of the last few years. Where the 2000 projections indicated that the present fee structure would fund operations through 2008, the new projections suggest that the present fee structure will support operations only through 2006. Nevertheless, the diminution in lawyer population growth does appear to be easing, and the Supreme Court’s adoption of new Rule 716, requiring lawyers licensed in other jurisdictions who practice in Illinois in the capacity of in-house counsel to secure limited admission, register and pay annual fees in Illinois, will provide addition revenue of perhaps $100,000 to $150,000 a year. The Commission will continue to explore measures to fortify revenues and contain spending without compromising the efficacy of its programs.
The Commission engaged the services of Grant Thornton LLP to conduct an independent audit as required by Supreme Court Rule 751(e)(7). The audited financial statements for the year ended December 31, 2003, are attached.