Minn. braces for government shutdown
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Attorney David Lillehaug, representing Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton talks to the media outside the Governor's office on Wednesday, June 29, 2011 in St. Paul. The operation of Minnesota state government would be restricted to critical functions in a shutdown that's less than two days away, a judge ruled Wednesday, raising the stakes as Dayton and Republican legislative leaders try to strike a budget deal that has eluded them for months (AP Photo/The Star Tribune, Jim Gehrz)
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) _ Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton and top Republicans are planning to resume negotiations Thursday morning with a wide-ranging government shutdown hours away.
Failure to complete a two-year budget would force the state’s second shutdown in six years, starting at midnight.
The shutdown would barricade state parks, idle road construction projects, shutter business permit offices, mothball two racetracks and shut the public out of the Minnesota Zoo and the state Capitol.
State park workers are preparing to send overnight campers home and drivers are rushing to renew their licenses at state offices.
The political impasse pits a Democratic governor who promised to raise income taxes on high earners against Republicans who oppose any new revenue.