Yakima has now spent more than $1 million defending a voting rights case brought by the American Civil Liberties Union that upended the city’s elections system. Assistant City Attorney Helen Harvey said Wednesday the city has spent $1,074,062 to date — and costs will continue to rise. Yakima’s attorneys on Tuesday filed a request with the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals seeking a stay of this year’s elections, and the city expects to file a friend-of-the-court brief with the Supreme Court by early August in a Texas case that could effectively reverse the outcome of the ACLU ruling.
The city has also asked the court, based in San Francisco, to stay its appeal of the ACLU case until the Supreme Court reaches a decision in the Texas case.
A ruling on the city’s request for a stay will come sometime after June 18, according to a briefing schedule set by the appeals court Wednesday. That’s just one day before 250 ballots are scheduled to be shipped to military members and other overseas voters registered in Yakima.