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US (MT): Lawsuits filed against governor to override veto of cannabis bill

Interest groups filed a pair of lawsuits Wednesday in an effort to allow lawmakers to override Gov. Greg Gianforte’s veto of Senate Bill 442, a bipartisan measure that spelled out how the state allocates taxes collected on the sale of recreational cannabis.

The lawsuit filed by Wild Montana and the Montana Wildlife Federation asks a Helena district court judge to declare Gianforte’s veto of the bill invalid unless and until he and Secretary of State Christi Jacobsen ask lawmakers whether they want to override the veto issued on the last day of the session. Independently, the Montana Association of Counties — another stakeholder involved with the legislation — is making a similar case.

The Legislature can override vetoes with a two-thirds vote, a process that takes place by mail when lawmakers are out of session.

But that process hasn’t occurred for SB 442, the result of “procedural trickery” on the part of the governor’s office, Wild Montana policy director Noah Marion said in a statement.

“While the Governor has the constitutional authority to veto SB 442, he cannot veto SB 442 or any other law in a manner that interferes with the Legislature’s constitutional authority to override that veto,” the lawsuit reads.

Read more at montanafreepress.org

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