Kimbrell v. McCleskey (Majority, with Dissenting)Annotate this Case
This appeal stemmed from issues involving the school-funding system and the disbursement of uniform rate of tax (URT) revenues to Arkansas's public-school districts. Appellees, school districts and their taxpayers ("School Districts"), filed a complaint seeking a declaration that any attempt by Appellants, the commissioner of the department of education and the state treasurer ("ADE"), to demand URT revenues in excess of the foundation-funding amount from Appellees was unconstitutional. The circuit court enjoined ADE from (1) seeking repayment of any portion of the URT revenues assessed for purposes of school funding from Appellees, and (2) withholding monies belonging to Appellees for the repayment of the URT revenues required for school funding from state or federal monies owed to the districts. The Supreme Court affirmed on direct appeal and reversed on cross-appeal, holding that the circuit court (1) correctly found that ADE was not authorized by the legislature to recoup and redistribute any URT revenues received from the School Districts that were in excess of the foundation-funding amount; (2) did not err in finding that ADE lacked the authority to withhold monies from the School Districts; and (3) erred in finding that the revenues generated by the URT were state-tax revenues.