“BENNINGTON — Lawmakers are considering whether to override Gov. Phil Scott’s veto of a bill that would have provided for stricter regulation of toxic substances.
The bill, ‘An act relating to the regulation of toxic substances and hazardous materials,’ passed the Senate and House late last month. Scott vetoed the bill Monday.
Scott, in his veto message Monday, said bill S. 103 ‘is duplicative to existing measures that already achieve its desired protections’ and ‘will jeopardize jobs and make Vermont less competitive for businesses.’
Brian Campion, D-Bennington, a co-sponsor of the bill, said Wednesday that the Senate is discussing an override.
The pending question, ‘Shall the bill pass, notwithstanding the Governor’s refusal to approve the bill,’ is on the Senate’s action calendar for Thursday.
To override the veto, a two-thirds vote is needed in the Senate (20 votes) and the House (100 votes).
The Senate bill would have given the health commissioner new authority to ban children’s products containing certain ‘chemicals of high concern.’ Current law allows the commissioner to issue bans ‘upon the recommendation of’ a committee that includes leaders of several state agencies. The change would have allowed the health commissioner to do so ‘after consultation with’ the committee. Any such rules are reviewed by a legislative committee before they take effect…
Legislative counsel Michael O’Grady, in a memo issued Monday, reviewed the differences between the committee established by the executive order and that described in the bill.
The ‘key substantive difference,’ he wrote, is that the order requires the committee to report to the governor, not lawmakers. ‘Requiring such recommendations to the General Assembly is logical because the General Assembly is, under the Vermont Constitution, the entity in state government with the power to formulate and enact laws.’ ”
Read the full article by Ed Damon.