Are Sundays "Days"?

One of new Ohio Governor Ted Strickland's very first official acts was vetoing a bill that outgoing Governor Bob Taft had intended to let become a law. The legislation, Senate Bill 117, would have amended the state's consumer protection laws to cap noneconomic damages in predatory lending suits and limit the ability of Ohio municipalities to sue paint manufacturers aleging that lead paint used decades ago constitutes a "public nuisance" for which the manufacturers are responsible.

According to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, there is a dispute over whether Governor Strickland's veto was constitutional. Once the legislature passes a bill, it will become law if neither signed nor vetoed by the Governor within ten days. At issue is whether the to count Sundays when the legislature is out of session. Bill supporters say "yes"; Governor Strickland and incoming state Attorney General Marc Dann say "no." The relevant Constitutional provision provides:

If a bill is not returned by the governor within ten days, Sundays excepted, after being presented to him, it becomes law in like manner as if he had signed it, unless the general assembly by adjournment prevents its return; in which case, it becomes law unless, within ten days after such adjournment, it is filed by him, with his objections in writing, in the office of the secretary of state.
Because the legislature adjourned after passing the bill, supporters maintain, Sundays should be included in the ten days, and the clock ran out on January 5. Strickland's office, however, claims he had until Monday, January 8, which is when he vetoed the bill. At present, it looks like this one will end up in court.

Related Posts (on one page):

  1. Ohio Legislators File Sunday Suit:
  2. Are Sundays "Days"?
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Ohio Legislators File Sunday Suit:

On Friday, Ohio Republican legislative leaders in Ohio filed suit challenging the validity of newly elected Governor Ted Strickland's veto of a bill outgoing Governor Bob Taft sought to let become law without his signature. According to the suit, technically filed against the new Secretary of State, Jennifer Brunner, Strickland could not have vetoed the bill because it became law before he took office. As I detailed here, at issue is how to count the number of days after the end of the legislative session for a bill to become law without the Governor's signature.

instead of suing Strickland for his veto on his first day in office, Jan. 8, House Speaker Jon A. Husted and Senate President Bill M. Harris took on Brunner, arguing that she did not have the power to return the bill to him after former Gov. Bob Taft filed it with the secretary of state’s office Jan. 5.

Husted and Harris are asking the Supreme Court to force Brunner to change her records to show the bill was not vetoed and allow it to take effect 90 days after it was filed.

"Brunner failed to carry out the secretary of state’s constitutional and statutory duties to maintain, preserve and keep safe (the bill) as filed by Governor Taft," the lawsuit said. . . .

[Brunner's] position is that the 10-day window for a governor to sign a bill, veto it or allow it to become law without his signature had not expired when Strickland asked her to return the bill.

Here is additional coverage of the suit from the Cleveland Plain Dealer and Associated Press.

Related Posts (on one page):

  1. Ohio Legislators File Sunday Suit:
  2. Are Sundays "Days"?
Comments