Next round tomorrow – teenage voters in Brattleboro
By Guy Page
The legislative veto knife fight between Gov. Phil Scott and the Democratic leaders of the Vermont House and Senate continues tomorrow.
Gov. Scott has vetoed a total of seven bills during the 2021-22 biennium. So far, only two have been successfully overridden – last year’s non-citizen voter charter change votes in Montpelier and Winooski. In the legislative leaders’ favor are the Democratic/Progressive parties’ strong numerical advantage and control of the legislative process. In the governor’s favor is the need to reach ⅔ majority in both chambers, and strong, vocal partisan Election Year sentiment in opposition to many of the vetoed bills.
The Tuesday, March 22 Senate calendar shows scheduled consideration of three bills vetoed by Gov. Scott:
H361, Brattleboro charter change allowing 16-17 year olds to vote in municipal elections and hold local office. Already vetoed 102-47 by the House, it may face a stiffer challenge in the Senate, despite its championing by Senate President Becca Balint (D-Windham), a Brattleboro resident.
H157, licensing of contractors, would require both licensing and certification of almost all home-related contractors. The bill also requires contractors to learn low-carbon building practices. It passed the House by 82 votes, well short of the 100 needed for a veto, and the delay of the veto vote until at least late April suggests the votes aren’t there now. Opponents say it could cripple small business contractors at a time when their skills are especially needed to repair existing housing and build new homes.
S79 would create a state registry of rental property owners. Supporters say it would open up funding streams for rental rehab, while critics say it also could open them up to more state oversight and regulation.
It is not certain that the Senate will hold an actual veto vote on any of these bills this week. Senate leaders may postpone the vote if they believe they lack the necessary votes to override.
The following is a list of all seven bills vetoed in 2021-22 by Gov. Scott:
|H.361||Approval of amendments to the charter of the Town of Brattleboro OVERRIDDEN BY HOUSE, UP FOR VOTE TUESDAY IN SENATE||2/28/2022|
|S.30||Prohibiting possession of firearms within hospital buildings OVERRIDDEN IN SENATE, VETO VOTE DELAYED IN HOUSE DUE TO UNLIKELIHOOD OF SUCCESS; REPLACEMENT BILL S4 APPROVED BY SENATE, HOUSE, ALSO FACES POSSIBLE VETO.||2/22/2022|
|H.157||Registration of construction contractors – HOUSE VETO VOTE POSTPONED UNTIL APRIL 20||2/10/2022|
|S.79||Improving rental housing health and safety – SENATE VETO VOTE ON CALENDAR FOR TUESDAY MARCH 22||7/2/2021|
|H.177||Approval of an amendment to the charter of the City of Montpelier OVERRIDDEN, BECAME LAW||6/2/2021|
|H.227||Approval of amendments to the charter of the City of Winooski OVERRIDDEN, BECAME LAW||6/2/2021|
|S.107||Confidential information concerning the initial arrest and charge of a juvenile, SENATE VETO VOTE ON CALENDAR FOR TUESDAY, MARCH 22||5/20/2021|
Vermonters who wish to contact their senators may find their contact information on the Vermont Legislature website. The following is a list of all 30 senators from the website; click on the hyperlinks for contact information, or leave a message for them at the Sergeant of Arms’ office at 802-828-2228.