Tuesday, March 27, 2012
Kansas House members are preparing to debate a proposed amendment to the state constitution aimed at blocking lawsuits over education funding.
The measure on Tuesday's agenda would declare that courts or the executive branch couldn't direct the Legislature to appropriate money. The proposal is backed by Republican Gov. Sam Brownback and GOP leaders in both chambers.
The Kansas Constitution currently says the state cannot spend any money unless the Legislature makes a specific appropriation. But in decisions in a school finance lawsuit in 2005 and 2006, the state Supreme Court told lawmakers they had to increase aid to public schools. The court also set specific figures.
Kansas faces another lawsuit from students and parents in four school districts, arguing that budget cuts in recent years have resulted in inadequate funding.