(a) The commission shall establish eligibility criteria for participation in the program based upon need and merit. These criteria shall be based on all of the following, which are set forth in order of importance:
(1) The applicant's need, which shall be based on the applicant's salary, personal resources, and law school debt.
(2) The applicant's commitment to public interest law, which shall be determined by examining the applicant's employment and volunteer history, and taking into consideration a low-income applicant's need to work while in law school.
(3) The applicant's declared interest in practicing in areas of the state where the need for public interest attorneys is high.
(4) The applicant's academic achievements.
(b) The commission shall adopt initial regulations for the program within one year of the effective date of the initial appropriation funding the program.
(Added by Stats. 2001, Ch. 881, Sec. 2.)