BISMARCK, N.D. (KXNET) — North Dakota passed 15 bills in the special session, but one of them didn’t make the cut — and our governor says it’s a “squandered” opportunity.
The state of North Dakota’s 17th special legislative session has now come to a conclusion two and a half days before the anticipated Friday deadline.
The session was called for by the Supreme Court ruling our Office of Management and Budget bill from the previous session was unconstitutional for violating the single subject clause of the constitution.
Despite the setback, the session saw an overwhelming amount of support for each bill passed, many receiving unanimous votes.
“Senate bill 2393 as amended has passed.”
However, there was one that couldn’t make the cut — that’s House Bill 1549.
“House Bill 1549 has failed.”
This bill would’ve meant people making $60,000 or less, and married couples making $100,000 or less, wouldn’t pay state income tax.
But after being passed in the House, the bill failed on the Senate floor, 16 to 31.
In a press conference after the special legislative session, Governor Burgum expressed great disappointment in the proposed income tax relief bill.
“With a couple billion in cash laying around, if we can’t figure out how to give one week’s worth of revenue back to the citizens of North Dakota, again, I guess I would just have to say, extreme disappointment on behalf of the citizens,” said Governor Burgum.
Several senators who voted “no” say they feel the policy was rushed, especially since it was introduced less than a week ago, but Governor Burgum calls that sentiment a red herring.
“This waiting thing is not the answer for people that are having trouble making ends meet right now,” Burgum said.
House majority leader Mike Lefor has a more positive outlook, saying the failure of the bill is just a bump in the road.
“The income tax wasn’t passed, but it’s still going to serve as a good road map for the 2025 session, in which I believe there will be additional tax relief,” said Lefor.
Overall, Governor Burgum agrees with the legislators that the special session was executed efficiently, with all original problems from the bill being taken care of.
Senate Bill 2393, the new version of the Office of Management and Budget bill, passed on the House floor on Wednesday by an 82-7 margin.
To see the rest of the bills that passed, you can find them here.