(AP) – Gov. Jay Nixon made his first veto of the session Friday, refusing to sign a measure he said unfairly penalizes experienced school administrators who want to continue their involvement in a school district.
The bill, among other provisions, would bar former school superintendents from serving on school boards in the same district where they had worked. Nixon said that restricts citizens’ ability to choose who will represent them.
“There are a number of legitimate requirements to run for office, like age, residency, criminal history, but this isn’t one of them,” Nixon said. “In a democracy, otherwise qualified candidates should not be banned from serving the public simply because of their expertise.”
Because the bill included an emergency clause that made it take effect immediately, Nixon said at least four candidates who are currently running for office and are to appear on April 7 local ballots would have been blocked. At least three other current school board members who are former superintendents would have been unable to run for re-election under the measure, Nixon said.