Nixon Vetos More Bills, Signs Bill Shoring Up Second Injury Fund

In the past two days, two more bills were vetoed by Gov. Jay Nixon. The first bill, SB240, modified provisions relating to ratemaking for gas corporations. In his veto letter, Nixon said,

“Without a compelling reason to expand the existing ISRS and with the perverse incentive created by allowing utilities to recover bad debts from their paying customers, sonsumers should not have to shoulder the burden this bill would impose.”

Here’s the full veto letter:

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The Missouri Energy Development Association disagreed with the Governor’s assessment, writing:

It is important to understand that SB 240 would have made no changes to the type of costs that can be recovered through the regulatory mechanism known as “gas ISRS” or to the current level of regulatory oversight. Instead, the enhancements to gas ISRS in SB 240 would have enabled natural gas utilities to file general rate cases less frequently and would have subjected them to a new and proportionally lower overall cap. Since the processing of a rate case can cost consumers millions of dollars, less frequent rate cases truly benefit consumers. In addition, SB 240 would have more accurately reconciled the uncollectible levels in between general rate cases and would have ensured for the first time that consumers do not overpay for the actual cost of those uncollectibles. The truth is the provisions in SB 240 would have continued to enhance the safety and reliability of our Missouri natural gas system to the benefit and protection of all consumers at a very conservative, well managed cost.

Today, he vetoed another bill, SB43, which modified various provisions relating to transportation.

Here’s the veto letter:

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One bill Nixon signed was SB1, shoring up the state’s Second Injury Fund for worker’s compensation:

“I appreciate the bipartisan efforts of lawmakers and stakeholders to craft a fair solution to a difficult, complex and long running-problem,” Nixon said in a statement. “Shoring up the Second Injury Fund will provide long-overdue certainty to businesses and security to injured workers. I thank Senator Scott Rupp and Representative Todd Richardson for their work to get this bill to my desk, and am pleased to make it law with my signature today.”

Rupp, the bill’s chief architect in the Senate, said in a brief interview on Wednesday that he spoke with Nixon earlier this week, at which time Nixon said he was going to sign the bill.

“It is nice to get it done,” he said.

You can see the rest of the bills signed by the Governor here.

Nixon Vetos More Bills, Signs Bill Shoring Up Second Injury Fund

Jones Calls For Veto Override on Gun Bill

Missouri Speaker of the House TIm Jones
Missouri Speaker of the House TIm Jones
No surprise here:

Republican House Speaker Tim Jones responded that he was “shocked” that Nixon would veto the bill, saying the Democratic governor is usually a supporter of gun rights.

“He generally has been an ardent supporter of the Second Amendment. I think he made a political, calculated move to veto House Bill 436,” Jones said. “I really don’t know what got to him other than special interest groups on the left.”

Jones brushed aside Nixon’s criticism of the bill: that it harkens back to the Civil War-era concept of nullification.

“The governor’s legal theories on this are just that: legal theories,” Jones said. “They are not the current state of the law of the land. Congress can pass all the laws, but it doesn’t make them de facto constitutional.”

Jones added that he believes the Supreme Court would find the bill to be constitutional.

Opponents of the law say there’s no reason to waste money on a federal court case which is sure to follow enforcement of this law. Attorney General Eric Holder already threatened Kansas with such action, to which they replied, “Bring it on.”

I predict the veto will be over-ruled this September.

Is that a good thing or a bad thing? Let me know in the comments.

Jones Calls For Veto Override on Gun Bill

Nixon Vetoes Agenda 21 Bill, Others

For a guy who is a member of the Democratic Party, the party who never saw a regulation they didn’t like, Gov. Jay Nixon is really worried about imposing rules that might tie people’s hands:

One of the bills vetoed Monday would have banned public entities from restricting celebrations or discussions of federal holidays. Though it could have protected religious-oriented holidays such as Christmas, Nixon said it also could have hampered efforts to enforce fireworks ordinances around Independence Day.

The other vetoed bill would have forbidden governments from enacting policies traceable to Agenda 21 —a nonbinding resolution adopted in 1992 by the United Nations that encouraged sustainable development.

Regarding his action, Nixon said:

“It is fundamentally misguided and unnecessary to require local government officials to become international law experts in order to perform their duties,” he said in his veto statement. “The premise of Senate Bill 265, to the extent it is discernible, is wrong and the solution it puts forth is worse.”

…the Democratic governor said the bill might have made 4th of July firecracker restrictions illegal.

“More troubling, House Bill No. 278 would greatly frustrate a ban on fireworks imposed during a period of severe fire risk,” he said.

Nixon Vetoes Agenda 21 Bill, Others