The Minnesota Supreme Court ordered the Legislature to again submit to the justices a report on how much money it has on hand as part of its ongoing legal fight with Gov. Mark Dayton.
Dayton, who was also ordered to file a report on the Legislature’s financial situation, vetoed the money to operate the House and Senate last spring during a budget dispute.
The two sides are engaged in a high-stakes constitutional battle that has already cost Minnesotans hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal fees.
The Legislature, which argues Dayton is unconstitutionally trying to eliminate a branch of government, had told the court that the Senate will run out of money on Dec. 1 and the House on Feb. 1.
Dayton contested that assertion, telling the court this week that the Legislature may intend to dip into another pot of money available to it, called the Legislative Coordinating Commission, which would keep the House and Senate solvent until the new legislative session begins in February.
Dayton angrily left a court-ordered mediation session last week when he learned, he said, that the Legislature may tap the commission money.
The original dispute from the end of the legislative session involved a handful of issues that includes tax cuts related to cigarettes and estates, teacher licensing standards and driver’s licenses for illegal immigrants.