A former Minnesota Supreme Court justice will represent Gov. Mark Dayton and the Minnesota Management and Budget department in a legal battle with the Legislature over Dayton's legislative funding line-item veto.

Dayton said Wednesday that his office hired Sam Hanson, now an attorney in private practice with Briggs and Morgan, to take the case. The Legislature filed a lawsuit Tuesday against Dayton and the state's top budget official, alleging a violation of the power separation between government branches.

Dayton vetoed funding for the House and Senate because of a dispute over tax cuts and policy issues in budget bills he signed in May. The state will stop funding both legislative chambers at the end of June, and reserve funds will run out later this summer, putting the salaries and benefits of hundreds of lawmakers and staff members at risk.

In a statement Wednesday, the DFL governor said he remained committed to finding a resolution on several issues, including teacher licensing standards and driver's licenses for immigrants living in the country illegally.

"I will continue to urge the Republican legislative majorities to agree to remove these fiscally irresponsible tax cuts, and to repeal their un-Minnesotan attacks on our state's immigrant communities and our teachers," he said.

The first court hearing in the case, before Ramsey County Chief Judge John Guthmann, is scheduled for June 26.

Erin Golden • 612-673-4790