Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley wasted no time in signing legislation providing tax credits to parents who send their children to private schools instead of failing public schools.
The Alabama Supreme Court decided late Wednesday afternoon to throw out a lower court order that kept the Legislature from sending the bill to the governor for signing. The Legislature delivered the bill Thursday morning and Bentley signed it just before 11 a.m.
The Alabama Supreme Court ruled the lawsuit filed by the Alabama Education Association is premature and dismissed it. The order clears the way for Governor Bentley to sign private school tax credits into law.
A legislative session that began with a rapid pace five weeks ago has been slowed by hard feelings over the passage of private school tax credits.
Democratic opponents of the tax credits are slowing down action in the House and Senate. House Minority Leader Craig Ford says the slowdown will resume when the Legislature meets Tuesday and will continue for the foreseeable future.
The Alabama Supreme Court has given the Alabama Education Association until Monday to respond to an effort by Republican legislators to get a private school tax credit legislation signed.
AEA got a Montgomery judge to issue a temporary restraining order barring the governor from signing the bill into law. Attorneys for Republican legislative leaders appealed to the Supreme Court and asked the court to lift the judge's order. The Supreme Court on Friday gave AEA's lawyers until Monday to respond.