Assembly to Consider Overriding Veto of DNR Secretary Legislation

Wisconsin Assembly Speaker Mike Sheridan (D-Janesville) and Rep. Spencer Black (D-Madison) today announced plans to bring Assembly Bill 138 to the Assembly floor next week in an attempt to override the Governor’s veto. AB 138 would remove the Governor’s ability to appoint the Department of Natural Resources Secretary and instead hand that authority to unelected Natural Resources Board members.

The bill passed (61-32) the Assembly in September 2009, but subsequently was vetoed by Gov. Jim Doyle. A veto override requires a two-thirds vote in both the Assembly (66) and the Senate (22).

Democrats hold a 52-vote majority. Therefore, it will require Republicans to join the Democrats for a successful override. Since supporters of AB 138 were short by five votes the necessary amount to override a veto, it remains to be seen whether there will be sufficient votes when the bill is brought up next week.