Kan. Will Obey Judge's Order To Resume Planned Parenthood Payments
September 6, 2011 — Kansas officials on Aug. 31 said the state will comply with a federal judge's order to resume the allocation of Title X federal family planning payments to Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri while it pursues an appeal, the AP/Washington Post reports. The state's decision comes one day after U.S. District Judge Thomas Marten ordered it to resume payments on the same quarterly schedule that existed before a new state law halted funding to the organization (AP/Washington Post, 8/31). Marten rejected the state's request to pay the organization monthly and only for services provided. He also declined to order PPKM to post a bond in the event that the state prevailed in the lawsuit (Hegeman, AP/San Diego Union Tribune, 8/30).
In late August, attorneys representing PPKM asked Marten to require the Kansas Department of Health and Environment to resume the quarterly payments. Despite Marten's recent ruling that the state must resume the payments, the state did not begin issuing funds to the organization, according to PPKM President and CEO Peter Brownlie (Women's Health Policy Report, 8/24).
In his Aug. 30 ruling, Marten said the court's intent was to restore and maintain the prior status quo between the parties. PPKM had been receiving quarterly payments; therefore, the judge ruled that the monthly reimbursement option would have undermined the clinic's ability to offer its current level of services. He wrote, "The court finds no injury to the defendants in maintaining the prior payment schedule, as they will be providing funding in a manner consistent with prior practice between the parties, and to an organization which has consistently provided satisfactory family planning services" (AP/San Diego Union Tribune, 8/30).