Two DFL legislators say a veto threat won't deter their effort to try to limit the governor's power to cut the budget single-handedly.
State Rep. Lyndon Carlson of Crystal and Sen. Richard Cohen of St. Paul say they want to prevent future governors from cutting state spending as widely and deeply as Gov. Tim Pawlenty did last year.
The measure follows Gov. Tim Pawlenty's action last spring to balance the budget -- through the process known as unallotment -- when he couldn't reach an agreement with legislative leaders.
The proposal would restrict the use of unallotment to fixing deficits that emerge when the Legislature is not in session, and the cuts would also be limited 2 percent of the general fund.
The two lawmakers said it's time for the unallotment law to be modernized.
"It was originally passed in 1939," said Rep. Carlson. "I think it provides more power than a good governor should want or a bad governor should have."
A day before the bill's introduction, Pawlenty vowed to block any attempt to modify unallotment authority, unless there's a prior agreement.
"I'm open to listen to their arguments, but if they set upon a course where they're simply going to fashion some change and not reach agreement with me on that, then it's going to get vetoed," said Pawlenty.
The governor's unallotment authority is also the subject of a lawsuit being considered by the Minnesota Supreme Court.