State back in court over education funding case

OLYMPIA, Wash. — Washington state officials will be back before the state Supreme Court for a hearing on the ongoing battle surrounding the state’s constitutional requirement to properly fund basic education.

The state wants the court to remove a contempt order and $100,000-a-day sanctions that have been accumulating for more than a year and which are supposed to be set aside into an education account. The group that sued over the funding wants the court to escalate pressure on lawmakers.

The high Court first ruled in 2012 that lawmakers were not meeting their constitutional responsibility to fully pay for basic education. The court gave the Legislature until 2018 to fix the problem, and it ultimately found the state in contempt in 2014.

Since the 2012 ruling, lawmakers have spent more than $2 billion to address issues raised in the lawsuit.