Minn. judge denies money for disabled job program

A Minnesota judge has ruled that a program helping severely disabled people find jobs doesn't qualify for funding during the state's government shutdown.

Ramsey County Chief Judge Kathleen Gearin denied the funding request on Monday, going against the recommendation of former state Supreme Court Chief Justice Kathleen Blatz.

The Minnesota Association of Community Rehabilitation Organizations argued that the program performs a critical government function.

Gearin's ruling says it serves an "admirable goal" but isn't "so essential" that it overcomes constitutional requirements.

She also denied requests to allow new nursing licenses, give car dealers access to an electronic vehicle registration system or let a suburban city get a water main construction permit.

But she allowed funding for a Twin Cities food delivery service for homebound elderly people to go ahead.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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