Missouri State Public Defender Michael Barrett is expected to testify before a legislative committee Tuesday in Jefferson City.

State Senator Bob Dixon (R-Springfield)

State Senator Bob Dixon

The Joint Committee on the Justice System meets Tuesday afternoon at 3:30 at the Statehouse, to discuss funding for the Missouri State Public Defender System.

State Sen. Bob Dixon (R-Springfield) chairs the Joint Committee. Senator Dixon’s office says Director Barrett and representatives from the Missouri Association of Prosecuting Attorneys are expected to testify at the hearing.

In July, Governor Jay Nixon (D) withheld $3.5 million of the Department’s $4.5 million budget increase. Barrett sued the Governor later that month for freezing the funding.

Nixon’s office says expenses for the Public Defender System have increased by more than nine percent during the past seven fiscal years.

The Committee also includes State Reps. Mike Colona and Gina Mitten (both D-St. Louis).