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Schools, Abortion, Death Penalty Top Kansas Court’s Docket

Associated Press - January 3, 2017 10:00 am

A Shawnee County judge declared a mistrial on a murder charge against a Topeka man involved in fatal road-rage confrontation.

The Kansas Supreme Court is heading into a year in which it could shape policy with major rulings on school funding and abortion.

The court heard arguments in September on whether Kansas is spending enough money on public schools to provide a suitable education for every child. It could rule any time.

In that case, four school districts sued the state in 2010. They argue that the $4.1 billion a year Kansas spends on schools is roughly $800 million short of what’s required.

The court could reshape abortion policy with a decision in a lawsuit filed by two doctors challenging a ban enacted in 2015 on a common second-trimester procedure.

The court also could decide capital punishment cases, and Chief Justice Lawton Nuss will push legislators to increase court employees’ pay.