Senators to try to Overturn Governor’s Veto

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State Senators will vote today to overturn the Governor’s first veto of the 2019 session.

The bill in limbo: Senate Bill 2244. The legislation would increase fees for commercial and non-commercial driver’s license from $15 to $30.

Governor Doug Burgum says he vetoed this bill because it places an unnecessary burden on taxpayers, and is not reinventing state government. 

A two-thirds vote in both chambers is needed to override a governor’s veto. Legislative leaders have not signaled if they will challenge the veto. The Legislature last raised the driver’s license fees in 1987. Several prior attempts to raise the fees have been rebuffed by lawmakers, who called it a tax increase.

All of this follows the 2017 Legislative body taking the Governor to the state Supreme Court, questioning his veto power. The North Dakota Supreme Court ruling nullified several partial vetoes by the governor and finds the legislative branch went beyond its constitutional powers and authority. The court found that, by trying to reach beyond its constitutionally defined duties, the legislative branch encroached upon the authority and power of the executive branch to manage spending decisions. 

The vote will take place during Thursday’s Senate Legislative session, sometime after 1 p.m. To watch live, click here

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