JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – The Missouri attorney general’s office is casting doubt upon the Legislature’s authority to override Gov. Jay Nixon’s line-item budget vetoes.
Legislators are to convene Wednesday and have been planning to try to override some of Nixon’s $276 million in line-item budget vetoes.
Senate President Pro Tem Tom Dempsey asked Attorney General Chris Koster’s office for procedural advice.
In a written response, Solicitor General James Layton said that a strict reading of the Missouri Constitution would not allow the Legislature to override line-item vetoes during its September session.
But Layton acknowledged that legislators have done so in recent years. He said the constitution would require override votes to be taken on each line-item that was vetoed – not simply on each budget bill that contains line-item vetoes.