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Arizona court weighs challenge to use of settlement

PHOENIX -- An appellate court panel is considering a court case involving Arizona's use of $50 million from a multistate foreclosure settlement to help balance the state budget.

Critics of the Legislature's decision to put $50 million into the general state budget wanted all of the money to be used for programs and services for borrowers and troubled homeowners.

Housing advocates are appealing a Maricopa County Superior Court judge's ruling in favor of the state, and a three-judge panel is scheduled to hear arguments Monday.

The judge said the Legislature decides how to spend the state's money. Housing advocates contend that the attorney general could decide how the money is used.

Some of the settlement money paid the state by lenders is being used for programs and services for borrowers.

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