Governorís veto threat places 800 bills in limbo

By CMTA Staff

Capitol Update, Sept. 12, 2008 Share this on FacebookTweet thisEmail this to a friend

Although the Legislative Session was supposed to have closed on August 31st, the Legislature did not adjourn, it recessed.  Over 800 bills remain at the Assembly and Senate desks rather than being sent to the Governor.  This is a result of the Governor's vow to veto any measures that reaches his desk before a budget does.  The Senate has 427 bills at stake and the Assembly has 531.  The question is, how long can the Legislature hold onto the bills?

The Governor has also threatened to veto measures that reach him too close to the September 30th deadline for him to act on all bills.  If a bill is not signed or vetoed by the Governor, the bill becomes law without his signature.  Bills must also be chaptered by the Secretary of State no later than October 2nd.  If the Legislature sends a bill to the Governor after September 30th; it would not likely be chaptered by October 2nd – therefore the bill would take effect January 1st of the following year (2010 instead of 2009).

Between September 1st and November 15th, the legislature can pass any bill that takes effect immediately.  These types of bills are tax levies, budget bills, statutes calling elections, urgency bills, and a bill passed in a special session.  The Governor has 12 days to act on these bills. Current analysis is unclear when these bills take effect.  

Clearly, the Constitution does not fully anticipate the unique situation California finds itself in.  

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