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MI Supreme Court rules on private school funds

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Posted at 10:56 AM, Dec 29, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-29 10:56:48-05

LANSING, Mich. (WSYM) — The Michigan Supreme Court has upheld a 2018 Court of Appeals decision that gives public money to private schools to comply with health and safety orders.

The court’s decision was a 3-3 tie. Justices Bridget McCormack, Richard Bernstein, and Megan Cavanagh wrote for a reversal of the case, arguing the spending was unconstitutional. Affirming the lower court’s order were Justices, Stephen Markman, Brian Zahra, and David Viviano. The seventh justice, Elizabeth Clement, did not take part in the ruling due to her prior involvement as chief legal counsel under former Gov. Rick Snyder.

A tie means an opinion in favor of private schools by the state appeals court, will stand.

At issue was whether more than $5 million, approved by lawmakers during Gov. Snyder’s administration, conflicts with the Michigan constitution.

It says “no public monies or property” can be used to “aid or maintain” private schools.