The state school board struck out this year on the vetoes front as the governor signed the education omnibus bill Thursday.
The State Board of Education had encouraged Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. to use line-item veto power on SB2, the controversial education omnibus bill attached to the $2.5 billion schools budget.
The board had questioned whether the bill, sponsored by Sen. Howard Stephenson, R-Draper, was unconstitutional because it combined a dozen unrelated bills, three of which had been defeated. Only appropriations bills can be so bundled, the board contended.
But Huntsman disagreed.
"We do think this legislation is appropriate (because) it falls under education funding. But because it has statutory language, it cannot be line-itemed," Huntsman spokeswoman Lisa Roskelley said. All bills rolled into SB2 were "related through education," she said, adding "there's precedence in putting education funding into a bill like this that hasn't been challenged before."
No one could be reached for comment late Thursday at the Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel.
Jean Hill, attorney at the State Office of Education, said the constitutional questions could go either way. "I don't know if the board will want to expend its resources on a challenge with a 50-50 outcome," Hill said.
The state board also had asked Huntsman to veto SB162, which shifted to the governor and Legislature its control over federal school programs that cost more than $100,000. He signed that bill earlier this week.