Scott, Senate in veto knife fight

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.361Approval of amendments to the charter of the Town of Brattleboro OVERRIDDEN BY HOUSE, UP FOR VOTE TUESDAY IN SENATE2/28/2022
H.157Registration of construction contractors – HOUSE VETO VOTE POSTPONED UNTIL APRIL 202/10/2022
S.79Improving rental housing health and safety – SENATE VETO VOTE ON CALENDAR FOR TUESDAY MARCH 227/2/2021
H.177Approval of an amendment to the charter of the City of Montpelier OVERRIDDEN, BECAME LAW6/2/2021
H.227Approval of amendments to the charter of the City of Winooski OVERRIDDEN, BECAME LAW6/2/2021
S.107Confidential information concerning the initial arrest and charge of a juvenile, SENATE VETO VOTE ON CALENDAR FOR TUESDAY, MARCH 225/20/2021

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. 

Senator Becca BalintWindham DistrictDemocrat
Senator Philip BaruthChittenden DistrictDemocrat/Progressive
Senator Joe BenningCaledonia DistrictRepublican
Senator Christopher BrayAddison DistrictDemocrat
Senator Randy BrockFranklin DistrictRepublican
Senator Brian CampionBennington DistrictDemocrat
Senator Thomas ChittendenChittenden DistrictDemocrat
Senator Alison ClarksonWindsor DistrictDemocrat
Senator Brian CollamoreRutland DistrictRepublican
Senator Ann CummingsWashington DistrictDemocrat
Senator Ruth HardyAddison DistrictDemocrat
Senator Cheryl HookerRutland DistrictDemocrat/Progressive
Senator Russ IngallsEssex-Orleans DistrictRepublican
Senator Jane KitchelCaledonia DistrictDemocrat
Senator Virginia “Ginny” LyonsChittenden DistrictDemocrat
Senator Mark A. MacDonaldOrange DistrictDemocrat
Senator Dick MazzaGrand Isle DistrictDemocrat
Senator Dick McCormackWindsor DistrictDemocrat
Senator Alice W. NitkaWindsor DistrictDemocrat
Senator Corey ParentFranklin DistrictRepublican
Senator Christopher A. PearsonChittenden DistrictProgressive/Democrat
Senator Andrew PerchlikWashington DistrictDemocrat/Progressive
Senator Anthony PollinaWashington DistrictProgressive/Democrat
Senator Kesha Ram HinsdaleChittenden DistrictDemocrat
Senator Dick Sears Jr.Bennington DistrictDemocrat
Senator Michael SirotkinChittenden DistrictDemocrat
Senator Robert StarrEssex-Orleans DistrictDemocrat
Senator Joshua TerenziniRutland DistrictRepublican
Senator Richard WestmanLamoille DistrictRepublican
Senator Jeanette K. WhiteWindham DistrictDemocrat

Categories: Legislation

8 replies »

  1. Do not surrender to this fringe alt left marxist balint!! She doesn’t belong anywhere near Our state legislature or in DC!! Vermont voters need to send here back to wherever she came from. He snd many other progressives are destroying Vermont with their far left ideology!!

  2. Hard for Gov. Scott to win a fight with the Senate that has a 75% majority of liberal minded democrats. The battle was lost years ago when Jim Douglas, an actual conservative Republican couldn’t sustain a veto.

    • Conservative Republican?

      Is this the same Jim Douglas who supported abortion and legalized Marijuana in Vermont?

  3. Stand tall and fast, Governor. Freedom-minded Vermonters have your back.

  4. Wishing the Gov. well but arranging my relocation just the same. I know MANY who are thinking and doing the same.

  5. we need voters to (turn out en mass ) in our next election to vote these anti-vermont legislators OUT

  6. “Knife fight”? That’s some hyperbole in a lede that isn’t followed through anywhere in the story, except to get people to read it to try to figure out how a Governor and the Senate pull knives on each other. This is more of a lede for The Daily Enquirer or The Daily Beast.
    I ask myself, why this choice was made for the lede.

    Better to say “bill undercuts security, economy and freedom for Vermonters – Dems object” and THAT would be an honest lede.

  7. Well there’s one senator on that list that attempts to respond to any and all emails. The rest well……..