Supporters sue over marijuana revenue bill vetoed by the governor
Supporters of a popular bill vetoed on the final day of the 2023 legislative session are suing the governor. They say he’s refusing to allow lawmakers to override his veto.
On the same day the legislature adjourned, Gov. Greg Gianforte vetoed the bill, which outlined marijuana sales revenue for conservation programs and county road maintenance.
The governor says his veto came while the Legislature was still in session and they could have objected then. Some lawmakers and supporters of the bill disagree. The Secretary of State has not sent lawmakers a mail ballot that could override the veto.
The bill received strong bipartisan support in both Houses.
Lawyers for the governor, and groups supporting the original bill, including Montana Wildlife Federation, the Montana Association of Counties and Wild Montana presented opening arguments Thursday.
Lawyers for the plaintiffs told Lewis and Clark District Court Judge Mike Menahan the governor is exploiting a loophole that undermines the Constitution.
Lawyers for the governor told the judge that if lawmakers wanted an override, they could still call for a special session or take the executive to court.
It is now up to Judge Menahan to issue a decision.