Governor Pawlenty vetoed three bills (bill log not updated yet) late this afternoon.
He vetoed the transportation policy bill because it included a measure that would require the state to opt out of federal driver’s license standards. The governor said in his veto letter that he understands the cost and privacy concerns of adopting REAL I.D. but wrote “we should be careful not to unduly restrict our ability to at least begin preparations for implementing the system.”
Pawlenty also vetoed a resolution urging Congress to end trade, financial and travel restrictions against Cuba. Pawlenty said the state would benefit from increased trade with the island country but the federal government, not state legislatures, should address foreign policy matters. The legislative librarian said it’s extremely rare for a governor to veto a resolution. DFL Rep. Phyllis Kahn (an author to the resolution) said she was shocked by the veto since Minnesota’s Ag Commissioner just returned from a trade mission to Cuba.
Pawlenty also vetoed a bill that would allow political subdivisions to make grants to non-profits. The governor said in his veto letter that “At a time when many political subdivisions are raising property taxes and requesting additional local government aid, granting political subdivisions authority to use taxpayer money to make unlimited charitable contributions or initiate new grant programs is simply not warranted.”