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Special session possibility lingers amid Gov. Lombardo’s threat to veto the state budget

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Zoe Malen
KUNR Public Radio
Nevada State Capitol

Nevada’s governor is threatening to veto the state’s budget. What does that mean?

With just over two weeks left of the 120-day session, Republican Gov. Joe Lombardo is prepared to potentially veto the state budget unless his priorities are met.

Two of the governor’s five bills haven’t been heard, including one to require showing identification to vote, and Democratic leaders haven’t agreed to put money toward private education. All five of his bills are exempt from legislative deadlines.

Sondra Cosgrove, a history professor at the College of Southern Nevada, said Lombardo’s threat of a budget veto is serious, and there’s incentive for him to call a special session following the Democratic-controlled 2023 legislative session.

“He gets to write the proclamation and say, ‘These are the topics you will discuss during this special session. You can’t talk about anything else that’s not in that proclamation.’ So that’s going to give him the power to say, ‘Okay, you’re going to discuss my bills,’” Cosgrove said.

The budget funds all state agencies, like health and human services, the DMV, and public employee salaries. The budget must be approved by June 1, or the state government will essentially go into a shutdown.

Lucia Starbuck is an award-winning political journalist and the host of KUNR’s monthly show Purple Politics Nevada. She is passionate about reporting during election season, attending community events, and talking to people about the issues that matter most to them.
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