The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals today released an order in SENGENBERGER v. TOWSEN, No. 04-35664, a habeas corpus appeal. The panel consisted of Michael Daly Hawkins, M. Margaret McKeown, and Richard A. Paez, Circuit Judges.
The State of Idaho, as the prevailing party, has filed a bill of costs for $301. Sean Sengenberger objects to the cost bill, primarily on the ground of his indigency. We previously have noted that “courts should consider the financial resources of the plaintiff and the amount of costs in civil rights cases.” Stanley v. Univ. of So. Calif., 178 F.3d 1069, 1079 (9th Cir. 1999). “Indigency is a factor that the district court may properly consider in deciding whether to award costs.” Id. This same rationale applies with equal force to habeas corpus petitioners. There is, however, a countervailing consideration to be taken into account. The Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act and the Prison Litigation Reform Act were intended, in part, to ameliorate some of the costs to the states in defending against the tide of habeas petitions. We are concerned here, however, with costs on appeal. 19349 . . .