No word from Supreme Court on request for halt to School District lawsuit | Arkansas Blog

Thursday, March 19, 2015

No word from Supreme Court on request for halt to School District lawsuit

Posted By on Thu, Mar 19, 2015 at 9:18 AM

The Arkansas Supreme Court's weekly report included nothing this morning on the state Education Department's request for a halt to proceedings in Circuit Judge Wendell Griffen's court on the lawsuit attempting to overturn the state takeover of the Little Rock School District.

The state has appealed his finding that the state is not immune from lawsuit in the case. It has also asked the State Supreme Court for a stay of proceedings until that question is resolved.

The state asked for a stay yesterday morning. Plaintiffs in the case responded in the afternoon that they wanted the preliminary injunction hearing to continue. The state also amended its original petition and the plaintiffs may have further comments on that this morning. UPDATE: Their second response continued to assert that it would be premature for the Supreme Court to stop Griffen's hearing. He might not issue an injunction, for one thing, the pleading noted.

Testimony of plaintiffs' witnesses resumes this morning in Griffen's court. The judge will not rule on the request for an injunction today in any case.

Judge Griffen has asked for briefs by Friday from the parties on the question of whether the state law that allowed the state department takeover was unconstitutional.

So there's unlikely to be a decision in the case until Monday.

The Supreme Court also issued nothing relative to the same-sex marriage lawsuit, completed four months ago, but now pending a ruling by the Court on which justices will decide the case since a couple of seats on the court have changed since then.

The plaintiffs final filing with the Supreme Court to argue for continuation of Griffen's hearing includes most of a restatement of the entirety of the case — that the state has acted illegally without cause, has gone too far in taking over the district, has deprvied voters and the School Board of constitutional rights and failed to demonstrate any action of  its own to improve schools.

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