by David Safier
State lawyers are fighting a court ruling that the state owes our schools $82 million. Actually, according to the court, the state owes the schools between $189 and $240 million, but it's willing to let bygones be bygones.
In 2000, Arizonans voted to include an automatic inflation adjustment into state funding for education. Then in 2010, Republican legislators decided one way to balance the budget was to ignore the will of the voters — or, more accurately, to say voters didn't actually mean what they thought they meant. The AEA and school districts sued and won, but the court said the legislature only has to include the inflation funds in the coming budget — hence the $82 million rather than what was withheld for the past three years.
I can't remember seeing such a litigious group as our current legislators. They apparently believe in the Divine Right of the Right to have everything go their way, and if doesn't, sue the hell out of whoever gets in their way (See the neverending saga: Republicans v. the Redistricting Commission).