Governor vetoes home rule charter bill

2013-04-03T19:51:00Z Governor vetoes home rule charter billBy HANNAH JOHNSON | Bismarck Tribune Bismarck Tribune

Gov. Jack Dalrymple vetoed a bill that would allow special elections on home rule charters, meaning the timeline for a new Burleigh County jail will change, Sheriff Pat Heinert told the county commissioners Wednesday.

The county commission wanted to schedule a special home rule election for a sales tax that would help pay for a new jail for Burleigh and Morton counties.

Heinert told commissioners at their meeting Wednesday that Dalrymple had concerns about low voter turnout for special elections and vetoed House Bill 1156.

Cities can hold special elections for home rule charter decisions, but counties can only have home rule votes during primary and general elections.

Heinert had set up a tentative timeline for the new jail, based on a fall special election. Now, he said, that timeline will have to be pushed back.

“I guess this changes things now that the governor vetoed (HB1156),” Commissioner Doug Schonert said at the meeting. “Quite disappointed by that.”

Burleigh County Emergency Manager Mary Senger also appeared before the commissioners, saying a full update on the county’s flood annex — the plan for the county in the event of a flood — had been completed.

The updated version is available online at http://burleighco.com.

Additionally, the commission voted to allocate $5,000 to the annual Fourth of July festivities at the Capitol.

The measure to provide the funds passed 3-2. Commissioner Jim Peluso, who voted against it, said he thought there was plenty of private funding available.

Commissioner Mark Armstrong agreed, saying the commission was cutting funds from other programs, including from the Abused Adult Resource Center, and it should look at all such expenditures.

The next county commission meeting is scheduled for April 15.

Reach Hannah Johnson at 701-250-8251 or hannah.johnson@bismarcktribune.com.

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