Supreme Court allows extension of time in school finance case

The Kansas Supreme Court on Wednesday granted an extension of time in the Gannon school finance case after a request by both sides.

The state had filed a request for additional time and cited statements that the Kansas Legislature intended to take more action on school finance during the veto session beginning April 26.

Earlier news reports cited a mistake in the school finance bill that passed, and said legislators would try to fix it when they return.

The court had earlier ordered the Legislature to come up with a school finance solution by a deadline of April 30.

The state recently asked the court to divide the briefing on adequacy and equity issues.

The plaintiffs in the case had asked the court to deny the state’s request to bifurcate the briefings because the issues are related. One of the plaintiffs in the case is the Kansas City, Kansas, public school district.

At a prehearing conference by phone on April 24, both sides jointly requested an extension of time to file briefs, according to Wednesday’s court document.

The court granted the extension Wednesday and a new schedule was approved that both sides agreed upon.

According to the court order, concurrent briefing of all issues will take place with each party filing its first brief by noon on May 7, and each party filing its reply brief by noon on May 14.

The court also noted that plaintiffs said the state had not completed the minutes for all of the relevant legislative meetings on the school finance issue, and requested that the minutes be completed by a specific date. The court noted that it was certain the state would expedite the minutes and update them as soon as they become available.

Wednesday’s court order is at http://www.kscourts.org/kansas-courts/supreme-court/Cases_of_interest/Cases/113267/20180425Order113267.pdf.

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