The recent veto override session was interesting on two fronts. It was obviously politically motivated by those who have greater political aspirations, and it was a direct challenge to the roles of the legislative and executive branches.
I am amazed that Gov. Gary Herbert has not openly confronted the attack on one of the basic tenants of his role as the chief executive — setting the working hours and work weeks for the employees of the executive branch. This is a fundamental element of his task of getting the work of the state accomplished.
He should very directly point this out to the Legislature and inform them respectfully that he will not implement HB300 because it is not an issue for which he is accountable to the Legislature.
The legislative role is to set the budget and the broad policy directions the state will take. The governor's job is to take the resources allocated by the Legislature and move the state in the direction the Legislature has set.
Those who aspire to be governor and who have made the state employee work week their platform would do well to recognize that if the governor gives in to this political pressure, the role of all future governors will be diminished to the detriment of all the citizens of Utah. We need both a strong governor and a strong Legislature.
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