Columbia church racks up $884K in legal fees
COLUMBIA (AP) — Missouri taxpayers may be covering $884,000 in legal fees for a Columbia church's U.S. Supreme Court case after a state agency denied its playground resurfacing.
The Columbia Daily Tribune reports that Attorney General Josh Hawley praised the high court ruling in favor of Trinity Lutheran Church but questioned the fees and expenses. The court ruled last year that the Department of Natural Resources couldn't use religion as a reason to deny the church's grant application to resurface a playground using scrap tire pieces.
The church filed a motion seeking legal fees for the Alliance Defending Freedom, which argued the case on its behalf. The alliance didn't return a request for comment.
Hawley's office is asking to reduce the hours billed and cut the hourly rates.