N.C. Supreme Court denies request to drop plaintiffs from Leandro lawsuit | Eastern North Carolina Now | A day before Wednesday's arguments in the Leandro case, justices voted along party lines to reject lawmakers' request to drop the plaintiffs Earls represented.

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
    Publisher's Note: This post appears here courtesy of the Carolina Journal. The author of this post is CJ Staff.

    The N.C. Supreme Court voted 4-3 Tuesday against dropping a group of plaintiffs from the latest stage of the long-running Leandro school funding lawsuit. The ruling was in response to a request filed by attorneys for state lawmakers.

    In a separate development, the court determined the order of Wednesday's oral arguments in the case.

    The group labeled Plaintiff-Intervenors or the Penn-Intervenors, who joined the case in 2005 with claims against the state and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, have been working alongside the original Leandro plaintiffs to push for more court-ordered education spending.

    The vote was along party lines among the justices, with Democrat Associate Justices Robin Hudson, Sam "Jimmy" Ervin IV, Michael Morgan, and Anita Earls voting against dropping the Plaintiff-Intervenors. Chief Justice Paul Newby and Associate Justices Tamara Barringer and Phil Berger Jr., all Republicans, dissented from the decision.

    Legislators requested earlier this month that Earls recuse herself from the Leandro case because she worked for the Plaintiff-Intervenors as their attorney in the case back in 2005. Earls denied the recusal request.

    "Justice Earls held that, although she signed Plaintiff-Intervenors' initial complaint, she did not need to recuse herself because 'the facts and claims at issue in the Intervening Complaint - which largely concerned student assignment policies in CMS - are entirely unrelated to the questions presently before this Court,'" wrote legislative leaders' attorney, Matthew Tilley, in his request for the Plaintiff-Intervenors' dismissal. "In addition, Justice Earls introduced an August 2005 order from the trial court - which had not previously been made part of the record on appeal - that clarified that Plaintiff-Intervenors were only permitted to intervene for the limited purpose of pursuing their claim related to the conditions in CMS."

    On Wednesday the state's high court hears oral arguments in the Leandro case, officially titled Hoke County Board of Education v. State. The case dates back to 1994 and a lawsuit filed by five county school systems against the state of North Carolina and the State Board of Education. The state Supreme Court already has produced major opinions in the case in 1997 and 2004.

    In the current dispute, justices will decide whether a trial judge can order the state to spend an additional $785 million on education-related items. Those items are linked to a court-sanctioned plan, dubbed the comprehensive remedial plan. That plan stems from a multiyear, multibillion-dollar proposal developed for the trial court by San Francisco-based consultant WestEd.

    The state Supreme Court will also decide whether a trial judge can bypass the General Assembly and force other state officials to transfer the $785 million to state agencies.

    Tilley and attorney Robert Hunter, representing the state controller, will share the first 30 minutes of Wednesday's oral arguments. N.C. Senior Deputy Attorney General Amar Majmundar, representing state government's executive branch, will take the next 30 minutes. Plaintiffs' attorney Melanie Black Dubis will have another 30 minutes. Tilley, Hunter, and Majmundar can reserve some time for rebuttal after Dubis.
Go Back

Leave a Guest Comment

Your Name or Alias
Your Email Address ( your email address will not be published)
Enter Your Comment ( no code or urls allowed, text only please )

Amended Stein lawsuit adds campaign staffer in tight Pennsylvania Senate race Carolina Journal, Editorials, Op-Ed & Politics Biden’s Student Loan Forgiveness Program: It’s Not Difficult to Understand Why People are Angry


Latest Op-Ed & Politics

North Dakota prosecutors on Friday leveled a murder charge against the man who allegedly ran down 18-year-old Cayler Ellingson earlier this month because he was a “Republican extremist” and had threatened him.
Ukrainian forces roll down west bank of Dnipro River as Russians retreat
Despite installing a new "Trinity Wishbone" offense during fall camp, PragerU has once again found itself dead last in the NCAA after a 94-0 drubbing at the hands of the Florida Gators.
Hurricane Ian barreled into South Carolina on Friday afternoon, threatening Charleston, Myrtle Beach, and other coastal cities with 7-foot storm surges and massive – and potentially deadly – flooding.
The Federal Reserve Board of Governors announced that six of the nation’s largest banks will take part in a process to examine economic risks posed by climate change.
After careful consideration, America has decided that religious people can still be allowed in society, so long as they aren't one of those psychos who actually believe their religion.
Democrats and legacy media love democratically elected women — unless those women stand athwart wokeism, yelling, “Get away from me, you freaks. God. Family. Country.”
In this episode of The John Woodard Show, John Woodard Interviews Sandy Smith. Sandy is a successful business executive who has started businesses, created jobs, and worked her way up the hard way. The high energy, can-do attitude Sandy brings is exactly what's needed in D.C. to drain the swamp...


Between 2019 and 2022, female students generally recorded larger drops in proficiency rates than their male counterparts
After Hurricane Ian wreaked havoc on Fort Myers, Florida, local pastor Tom Ascol expressed trust in Jesus Christ as his congregation recovers from the damage.
The months-long drought in southern Texas has ended after local woman Stacy Ramage emptied all the water bottles from her nightstand into the water supply.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky announced on Friday that his nation has formally submitted an expedited application to become a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
Voter I.D. garners more support than the president or the governor
The full measure of Hurricane Ian‘s coast-to-coast trail of death and devastation in Florida was revealed as dawn broke Friday, including at least 19 deaths, countless homes washed out to sea, and millions without power


Back to Top