The Northern Virginia Daily's Political Depot

A service for our readers outside the Northern Shenandoah Valley... a sampling of The Daily's political coverage, plus unofficial, 'reporter's notebook' stuff. And occasional dry humor...

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Location: Strasburg, Virginia

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Raw Data: Seven Vetoes

From the office of Gov. Tim Kaine...

RICHMOND – Governor Timothy M. Kaine today announced he has vetoed seven of the 958 bills adopted by the 2006 General Assembly. Midnight was the Governor’s deadline to act on legislation. Legislators are scheduled to consider the Governor’s vetoes and proposed amendments during a one-day Reconvened Session on Wednesday, April 19, 2006.


Commonwealth Transportation Board appointments

SB 304/HB 673

Governor Kaine has vetoed legislation that would allow the General Assembly to appoint nine members of the Commonwealth Transportation Board – appointments currently made by the Governor.

"During my first three months in office, my top priority has been working in a bipartisan way to find a long-term, fiscally responsible to approach our transportation challenges, and change the way Virginia approaches these issues," Governor Kaine said. "These bills would only serve to politicize the Commonwealth’s transportation planning process at the very time we should be working together to make the tough decisions that our transportation problems require -- and that our citizens demand."

"In addition, no reason exists for the Executive branch to cede this appointment power to the Legislative branch at this point. Any shift in the balance of power should occur in conjunction with a broader review of issues including the merits of a two-term governor," Governor Kaine said.

Tobacco Settlement Foundation appointment

HB 1545

The Governor has vetoed legislation that would change the power to appoint the director of the Tobacco Settlement Foundation from the Governor to the Board of Trustees of the Foundation.

"Some believe that allowing the governor to appoint the director threatens the Foundation’s continuity of operations,” Governor Kaine said. “Because the current director has served under the two previous governors and was then reappointed at the beginning of my administration, this argument is not compelling."

The Governor also said such a proposed shift in the power of gubernatorial appointments should occur in the context of a review of issues including the merits of a two-term governor.

Tobacco Indemnification and Community Revitalization Commission appointment

HB 706

The Governor also vetoed a bill that would change the power to appoint the director of the Tobacco Indemnification and Community Revitalization Commission from the Governor to the Commission.

"Given the crucial economic development responsibilities of the Commission, it is imperative that the Governor have the ability to appoint a professional who will work as part of the entire team of state officials who strive to promote business development and entrepreneurship, especially in Southside and Southwest Virginia," Governor Kaine said.

The Governor also said such a proposed shift in the power of gubernatorial appointments should occur in the context of a broader review of issues including the merits of a two-term governor.

Graduation Prayer

HB 493

This legislation would require the Virginia Board of Education to address high school graduation ceremonies in its guidelines for constitutional compliance for student prayer.

"Because the Board, with the assistance of the Attorney General’s office, has already developed the guidelines that are requested to be developed in this bill, I veto the bill," Governor Kaine said. "This bill is unnecessary, as the Board’s guidelines already address this issue in a comprehensive manner."

Concealed weapons

HB 1106

The Governor also has vetoed a proposal that would allow individuals without concealed weapon permits to store firearms in locked compartments in their vehicles.

"This measure runs contrary to existing state law regarding concealed weapon permits, allowing people who have not completed a criminal background check, and who are untrained with a handgun, to possess a firearm in a concealed manner within a locked compartment in their vehicles," Governor Kaine said.

“The objections of law enforcement to this measure are compelling," the Governor added. “It presents a danger to our law enforcement officers, who risk their lives for Virginians on a daily basis while patrolling the Commonwealth’s roads and highways."


Representation on Committee on Standards

HB 1178

The Governor has rejected legislation to eliminate a requirement that a member of the minority party be appointed to any three-member Committee on Standards that may be established by the Senate or House of Delegates.



"No matter the party in power, maintaining high ethical standards is a bipartisan goal," Governor Kaine said. "Depriving a committee charged with ethical oversight of its bipartisan representation would subvert the whole purpose of its existence."


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