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.
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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.