No sooner have we cautiously congratulated Gov.Phil Scott for stepping up to the plate on Climate Change, than we have to call him out on the budget veto.
As Lauren Hierl of Vermont Conservation Voters points out that the budget is not all about teachers’ health insurance:
“The Vermont budget funds numerous programs that support safe drinking water, clean air, healthy communities, a thriving outdoor tourism economy, and so much more. We can’t afford to play political games with funding for these vital programs, and that’s why we’re calling on Governor Scott to sign the budget,” said Lauren Hierl, political director for Vermont Conservation Voters.
With environmental protection so jeopardized under the Trump administration, any delay by the state in continued support for its many responsible initiatives threatens our future.
Despite all the squabbling over teachers’ healthcare, the Legislature has met its obligation to put forth a budget for the entire basket of statewide operating costs. It is now up to the Governor to set politics aside and sign it.
As John Walters notes in Seven Days, even though Governor Scott went ahead and vetoed both the budget bill and the property tax bill in a single sweep, the state Constitution requires that each bill be addressed separately.
The upshot is that Governor Scott has a chance to reconsider the political heavy-handedness of his veto; so we ask him to reconsider the greater good of the state as a whole and sign the budget.