ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — A Ramsey County judge has denied Gov. Mark Dayton's request to order stalled budget talks into mediation and ruled against four senators who sought to keep the court out of the budget process.
Chief Judge Kathleen Gearin made the rulings Thursday during a hearing expected to address the size and scope of a looming government shutdown.
The Democratic governor's request for mediation was opposed by lawyers for the Republican-controlled Legislature and Attorney General Lori Swanson, a Democrat.
Gearin says the executive and legislative branches of government have "institutional competency" to resolve the budget impasse.
The petition from Republican Sen. Warren Limmer and three colleagues argued that court-ordered funding for critical state services would violate the constitutional separation of powers.
Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.