The Mississippi Supreme Court made a ruling in favor of the governor’s ability to make budget cuts mid-year.
The ruling comes after the Southern Poverty Law Center filed a lawsuit back in 2017 on behalf of State Representative Bryant Clark and State Senator John Horhn. In the lawsuit, the two legislators claimed that Governor Bryant’s budget cuts of nearly $20 million from the Mississippi Adequate Education Program (MAEP), which benefits public schools, were unconstitutional. The lawsuit argued that the law allowed only the legislature the ability to cut the state budget.
The lawsuit was first filed in Hinds County where a chancery judge dismissed it and on Thursday, the state Supreme Court agreed with that dismissal writing that the Governor has the power to control the state’s budget once it has been set.
“It is just ridiculous that now if people do not like a particular piece of legislation, they just file a lawsuit and taxpayers have to spend money defending the Governor who has to carry out a statutory responsibility of balancing the budget,” said Governor Phil Bryant.