Governor Joe Lombardo’s late-night veto of a major piece of the state budget has thrown last-minute negotiations with legislative Democrats into disarray, leaving a mere four days before the 120-day legislative session concludes. The vetoed bill, known as AB520 or the Appropriations Act, is an extensive government funding bill that includes over $7 billion in appropriations, representing a significant increase from the previous budget period. Lombardo criticized the budget language as “undisciplined,” expressing concerns about the use of one-time money for ongoing programs and the potential risks of Nevada facing a fiscal crisis.

This veto follows Lombardo’s signing of another major budget bill, AB522, the state worker pay bill, and an 11th-hour deal reached with Democrats to sign two additional budget bills and a pair of significant school discipline bills. Despite the governor’s threats to veto the state budget if his legislative priorities were not addressed, he signed three out of the five major bills used to fund the state government. With the session rapidly drawing to a close, lawmakers now face the formidable challenge of attempting to override the vetoes or introducing a new bill to implement the Appropriations Act. Failure to pass the budget bills could push the Legislature closer to a special session as they race against time to conclude budget negotiations before the fiscal year begins on July 1.