The Senate sponsor of a bill revising Missouri’s criminal code said Friday that Gov. Jay Nixon will not veto the bill, but the governor’s office would not confirm that a decision had been made.
Sen. Jolie Justus, D-Kansas City, told members of the Missouri Bar Association at the group’s spring conference in Jefferson City that sponsors of the legislation met with representatives from the governor’s office earlier Friday and were told Nixon would not veto the item.
However, a Nixon spokesman would not confirm that Friday afternoon, and a statement from his office said: “We continue to work with the sponsors of Senate Bill 491, as well as groups that would be directly impacted by it, to address issues surrounding this legislation.”
The organization Mothers Against Drunk Driving has been outspoken in opposition to the bill, saying some of the language could result in a loophole allowing offenders to circumvent the law. Meghan Carter, executive director with the Missouri chapter of MADD, said her group has concerns over the use of the word “vehicle” in the bill without specifying “motor vehicle,” for example.
Nixon has until Tuesday to veto the bill. House and Senate leaders indicated this week they would either try to override a veto in the last days of this year’s legislative session, or push forward with a separate bill sponsored by Rep. Stanley Cox, R-Sedalia.