Dayton identifies more critical services in shutdown

Gov. Mark Dayton today identified more state services that he considers essential during the state shutdown.

He sent an additional list of services he’d like to see continued to Kathleen Blatz, the former state Supreme Court chief justice who is serving as a special master in evaluating which services should continue to be funded during the budget standoff. 

On the new list:

  • Special education aid.
  • Chemical dependency and mental health services.
  • HIV case management and counseling services.
  • Services for victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and other crimes.
  • Child care assistance.
  • Services for the homeless, the disabled, and other vulnerable Minnesotans.

Blatz is considering appeals from dozens of groups who want state funding restored and will consider Dayton’s new list along with the other proposals.

And Dayton said his administration will continue to evaluate whether additional services need to be deemed “critical” and restored.

“Because of the strict language of the Minnesota Constitution, there are severe limits on what state government can do without legislative appropriations,” Dayton said in a statement. “Chief Judge Gearin’s Order confirms those limits. We will continue to do the very best we can within the Court’s Order to protect the lives, health, and safety of all Minnesotans.”

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