Monday, February 02, 2009


SB646 attempts to deal with governor’s blocking of worthwhile legislation

by Larry Geller

Here’s a bill you might want to support. It will be heard on Thursday, and submitting testimony from your computer is now pretty easy. Kudos to Sen. Ihara for introducing it. Now it’s up to us to push it through.

Regular readers will recall my many comments on Governor Lingle’s thwarting of laws by refusing to release money that the Legislature has apportioned. In effect, she becomes a law unto herself, deciding what will happen or not happen regardless of the law as it is written. In many cases, her actions can have real effect on many lives.

Who knows how many deaths might have been avoided if Lingle had released the $3 million for pedestrian safety over the past two years?

Perhaps the most recent example is Lingle’s refusal to create a website to track which organizations are benefitting from state money. The law says it will happen, Lingle says it won’t.

SB646 is only a small step, but perhaps it is a good beginning.


The hearing notice has information on where to email testimony.

(There’s a typo around line 12 in the bill, but they’ll fix that.)

You have the power, give it a try.

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I’ve also written about it a few bazillion times but this bill isn’t gonna do anything- I believe the guv already has to declare it’s because of lack of funds and all this does is allow him/her to make up a reason and report it to the lege.

What we really need is constitutional reform chucking the whole “council on revenues/balanced budget/two bites of the apple/hurry up and wait” method of budgeting. All the lege is doing right now is treading water until March’s COR numbers and then they’ll all scurry like rats to slap together a budget which may or may not get actualized.

Exactly, Andy.

This bill would merely provide another example of a laughably-low "hurdle" for the Governor. Of course, the Lege plays these games, too, when they pass laws with toss-off "the legislature finds this to be in the public interest" language like, say, allowing a large capacity ferry to operate before completing an EIS...

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