Education funding ballot initiatives discussed at state Supreme - - Jackson, MS

Education funding ballot initiatives discussed at state Supreme Court

JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

You'll have the chance to change Mississippi's Constitution on November's ballot. The questions will be about requirements for public school funding. But exactly what you'll see on the ballot is in question.

"I hope that all the voters across Mississippi will see the importance of supporting this initiative so we can once and for all fully fund public education for all of our children and get off the bottom," said Adrian Shipman.

Oxford mom Shipman supports the citizen-led constitutional amendment known as Initiative 42. What Shipman isn't excited about, is the alternative offered by the legislature.

"It's entirely too confusing for voters and we want voters to understand this is very simple," explained Shipman. "You're either voting to fund education or you're not."

She filed a legal objection. A lower court judge rewrote the alternative's title. Now the question posed to Mississippi Supreme Court justices is whether he had the legal standing to do that.

The law says amendment titles can only be 20 words, but justices had questions about how voters will know the difference between initiative 42 and 42A.

"We want the title that General Hood gave it," noted the Legislature's attorney Michael Wallace. "We were satisfied with that. And we think that's what this court needs to restore."

"I'm grateful that the Supreme Court heard our case," added Shipman. "But really for me, nothing has changed. I'm fully supportive of Initiative 42."

Justices did not say when they will rule.

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