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Sandoval vetoes four more bills, count reaches 17

CARSON CITY — Gov. Brian Sandoval on Thursday vetoed four more bills passed by the Legislature.

That brings his veto total to 17, hardly in the ballpark with the record 48 vetoed by Gov. Jim Gibbons in 2009. Gibbons’ veto stamp now is in the Nevada State Museum in Carson City.

Gov. Kenny Guinn vetoed 11 bills during the four legislative sessions he was governor. He often sent bills he did not like back to legislators and asked for changes so he could sign them.

Sandoval does not use a veto stamp but sends a veto message and returns the bill to the Legislature without his signature.

Vetoed Thursday were the following:

■ Assembly Bill 300, which would have revised rules for the Foreclosure Mediation Program operated by the Administrative Office of the Courts.

Sandoval said the Nevada Supreme Court on June 1 created an advisory committee for the mediation program that has been charged with considering ways to improve the program. All 26 Republicans in the Legislature voted against the bill.

■ Assembly Bill 137, which would have required all public and charter schools that are eligible to establish free breakfast programs for all students.

Sandoval said he was confident the schools can best determine whether to administer nutrition programs. All but four Republicans voted against the bill.

■ Assembly Bill 136, which would have allowed certain felons to earn credits to reduce their sentences by acquiring vocational skills and passing drug treatment programs. Violent and sex offender would have been excluded. Nineteen of the 26 Republicans opposed the bill.

Sandoval said the bill would allowed "dangerous criminals to be prematurely released from prison" and increased the risk of Nevada citizens. He added the bill sent a message to offenders that the state was "soft on crime."

■ Senate Bill 188, which would have allowed prison wardens to establish 84-hour work schedules for correctional officers in each two-week pay period. Employees would have worked 12-hour shifts, three days one week, four the next. The prison employees union has been seeking the shifts for several years.

The governor said prison wardens already have the authority to experiment with variable work schedule, and 12-hour shifts have been considered.

Every senator, including 10 Republicans, voted for the bill, while 12 of the 16 Assembly Republicans opposed it.

Because most of the governor’s vetoes were made after the close of the Legislature at 1 a.m. June 7, votes by the Legislature to override his vetoes will not be made until the next session in 2013.

Before adjournment, legislative leaders decided not to conduct override votes on four vetoed bills. That means those bills officially are dead.

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