Branson School District RE-82 v. Romer

161 F.3d 619 (10th Cir. 1998), cert. denied, 526 U.S. 1068 (1999)

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Branson School District RE-82 v. Romer

United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
161 F.3d 619 (10th Cir. 1998), cert. denied, 526 U.S. 1068 (1999)

Facts

Colorado entered the Union as a state in 1875. At this time, the Colorado Enabling Act (Act) expressly granted federal public lands to Colorado to be administered for the benefit of the state’s public schools. In the 1990s, Colorado still held most of these lands, which were managed by a land board. Worried about the possible sale of environmentally sensitive lands, Colorado’s governor Roy Romer (defendant) successfully advanced an amendment to the state constitution (Amendment 16) that changed the guiding principles for managing this land. Previously, the land board was required to seek the highest returns in order to fund the common schools. Now, the land board was directed to obtain reasonable and consistent income over time. Three rural school districts and their pupils (plaintiffs) sued to overturn Amendment 16. The district court dismissed the suit. The plaintiffs appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Ebel, J.)

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