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U.S. Supreme Court turns away religious rights case over church grants

Reuters logo Reuters 3/4/2019 By Andrew Chung
a large white building: FILE PHOTO: The U.S. Supreme Court is seen in Washington © Reuters/Alexander Drago FILE PHOTO: The U.S. Supreme Court is seen in Washington

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Supreme Court bypassed a chance to further expand the ability of religious entities to receive public funding, leaving in place on Monday a lower court ruling that blocked a New Jersey county from giving historic preservation grants to churches.

The justices opted not to hear appeals of the ruling that Morris County violated a state constitutional ban on using public funds to repair places of worship when it gave millions of dollars to 12 churches under its grant program for local historic preservation projects. In doing so, the justices declined a chance to build on a major 2017 Supreme Court ruling that opened the door to more taxpayer funds going to religious institutions.

(Reporting by Andrew Chung; Editing by Will Dunham)

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