Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. used one veto but signed every other piece of legislation that crossed his desk.

Tuesday was the final day the governor could sign any bill passed during the last 10 days of the legislative session.

Huntsman signed most controversial bills early on but waited until the last possible day to sign a bill regulating livestock watering rights.

The only bill Huntsman disagreed with — and vetoed — was one that would have essentially told him what to do. SB144 would have required legislative pre-approval on any interstate agreements costing the state more than $50,000.

While lawmakers deny it, the bill may have sprung from displeasure last fall when Huntsman signed a Western climate initiative with California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger — a moderate, environmentally friendly Republican not much loved in Utah's conservative wing of the party.

Huntsman ignored requests for several vetoes.

The state school board hoped Huntsman would use line-item veto powers and get rid of some of an omnibus education bill, but he declined. The controversial SB2 combined a dozen unrelated bills — three of which had been defeated — and attached them to the $2.5 billion schools budget.

The state board also 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 as well.

Salt Lake County Councilman Joe Hatch wanted Huntsman to veto SB71, a bill that ended up extending the terms of five Jordan Board of Education incumbents without voter approval. Hatch said the bill was "unconstitutional."


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