Judge rules for lawmakers in dispute with governor

Published 4:08 pm Friday, January 16, 2009

MONTGOMERY — A Montgomery judge has ruled on the side of legislators in a dispute with the governor that could determine which state agencies receive the biggest budget cuts due to the recession.

Montgomery County District Judge Truman Hobbs ruled Friday that Gov. Bob Riley’s veto of one section of the General Fund budget passed by lawmaker’s last year was unconstitutional. The governor used a line-item veto to remove a section of the budget that would have caused agencies that provide social services to receive lesser cuts than other departments.

Hobbs ruled that Riley’s action went beyond the line-item veto provisions in the Alabama Constitution.

Riley said he would file an immediate appeal to the Alabama Supreme Court.