Norton to Introduce Bill to Create D.C. Residency Requirement for CSOSA and PSA Directors
WASHINGTON, D.C.—Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) today announced she will introduce a bill to require the Director of the Court Services and Offender Supervision Agency for the District of Columbia (CSOSA), an independent federal agency created by Congress in the Revitalization Act that supervises only D.C. offenders on parole, probation and supervised release, to reside in the District during the Director’s tenure. Norton announced her bill as the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs today considered the nomination of Richard S. Tischner, Jr. to serve as CSOSA Director. Norton’s bill also would require the Director of the Pretrial Services Agency for the District of Columbia (PSA), which is an independent agency within CSOSA that supervises federal and D.C. defendants, to reside in D.C. during the District’s tenure. Norton’s bill would be prospective and not apply to those not already in office upon enactment. Norton has previously introduced a bill to require certain federal officials serving in D.C., including federal district court judges, U.S. Attorney and U.S. Marshal, to live in the District. In nearly every jurisdiction in the United States, including the territories, federal district court judges, U.S. Attorneys and U.S. Marshals are required by federal law to reside within the jurisdictions where they have been appointed—but no such residency requirement exists for such officials serving in the District.
“Congress has justifiably understood that federal officials must live in the jurisdiction they serve to ensure in-depth knowledge of the unique issues and challenges residents and these federal officials face,” Norton said. “This patronizing leftover from when the District was governed by the federal government has real effects on residents. There is no reason that the Directors of CSOSA and PSA, federal agencies that uniquely serve D.C. residents, should not be required to live in the District, engage with local communities and work closely with local officials. Adding residency requirements for federal officials serving the District is a matter of fairness that would make D.C. more equal with the states and even the territories.”