Calling it the wrong way and the wrong time, Republican Gov. Nikki Haley vetoed the $12,000 per person raise that lawmakers wrote for themselves into the budget. As one of 76 vetoes in this year’s budget—$18.5 million from the $7 billion budget—Haley said a better way to boost legislative pay would be to put it to a vote by ballot referendum.
She also commented on her lean use of the veto pen saying her administration largely agreed with lawmakers on the direction that government should go. With few vetoes on the education front—except for funding to the early childhood program, First Steps, which was authorized for just one more year—Haley praised lawmakers for a united front on charter schools, Read to Succeed and other programs. “This was everybody saying it’s time to make it the year of the child and go forward with education.”
Other vetoes included—$2 million to a caregivers program under the Lt. Governor’s Office, $2 million to a sports development fund in the Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism, $1 million for a Parks and Recreation Development program, and $1.1 million in non-recurring funds for a facility under the Department of Natural Resources.
Lawmakers will reconvene next week to take up Haley’s budget vetoes.