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Thursday, August 2, 2012

Ancel Glink Question of the Month - August 2012

Municipal Q&A - August 2012:

In our municipality, an ordinance passed and at that same meeting the Mayor said that he was vetoing it.  At the next meeting, he presented written reasons why he opposed the ordinance, but he did not use the word "veto" in his message.  Is his veto valid?

Answer: Although the Mayor's actions at the two meetings were a little irregular since he couldn't effectively verbally veto the ordinance, they probably constituted a valid veto.  The Mayor cannot exercise the power to veto at the same meeting the item passes. The statute says that his disapproval is to be indicated by written objections at the next regular meeting of the Board or Council occurring not less than five days after the passage of the action he wishes to veto. A court would probably find that the Mayor's initial statement that he wanted to veto the ordinance, along with his "written objections," read together, constitute a valid veto.   The Board or Council is then authorized to take action to override the Mayor's written veto "at the next regular meeting following the regular meeting at which the City Council receives the Mayor's written objection."  The vote of two-thirds of all of the Trustees or Aldermen then holding office are required to override the veto.


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