The attorney who represented state lawmakers and state employee union that sued over the governor’s veto of money targeted by the legislature to keep Iowa Workforce Development offices open is pleased the Iowa Supreme Court ruled in their favor.
Attorney Mark Hedberg says, “I believe it was a victory for the Constitution as we have it in Iowa and the separation of powers is that the use of an item veto in an appropriations bill is limited. And the legislature is empowered to condition their funds and if you want to eliminate those restrictions and conditions, you also have to eliminate the funds.”
The attorney for the governor argued that the legislature didn’t clearly define field offices in designating that the money keep those offices open. Hedberg says the ruling points out there was a clear definition.
“Judge Waterman’s decision is pretty elegant in its sense that it states…’the legislature appropriated funds to IWD with strings attached and our constitution does not permit the governor to cut the strings and spend the money differently,’ I think that’s it in a nutshell right there,” Hedberg says.
While the ruling threw out the line-item veto, it also threw out the entire section funding IWD programs. Hedberg says his job is done and it’s now up to the legislature to determine how to deal with that portion of the ruling.
See a previous story on Hedberg’s Supreme Court argumentsin the case: wp.me/p16gWZ-mrU