Orr doesn't expect governor's divorce to influence budget talks

Orr doesn't expect governor's divorce to influence budget talks

(WAFF) - Republican Senator Arthur Orr of Decatur said Monday that he does not believe Governor Robert Bentley's divorce will influence on the budget talks, in part, because the legislature has not agreed with the governor anyway.

News of Dianne Bentley filing for divorce from her husband comes when Alabama is in a budget crisis. Lawmakers have fought the governor's tax proposals.

A second special session is coming, the legislature's third chance get a budget passed. Senator Orr said the divorce should not matter because is a personal issue for the Governor's family.

He added that it won't matter because Governor Bentley has not had much influence.

Orr said Bentley's proposal for $300 million in tax increases has not gone far with the legislature, and that won't change.

What may change, Orr said, is the willingness for lawmakers to at least consider some of those increases. The governor has twice vetoed budgets that included $200 million in funding cuts.

Orr said if that happens again during a second special session, he expects the legislature to simply get the budget done by overriding the governor.

"In Alabama, we have a very weak governorship in that if a simple majority passes a bill, and he vetoes it, we can override that veto with a simple majority. you don't have to have a super majority like they do in Washington," Orr said.

Orr said he expects the second special session to be called for next week or the week after. The budget is due before Oct. 1.

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