OK House, Senate Override Fallin Veto, HB 2625 Becomes Law

Wednesday, May 21st 2014, 4:42 pm
By: Dana Hertneky

Late Wednesday afternoon, both the Oklahoma House and Senate voted to override Governor Fallin's veto of House Bill 2625. 

The law will  create a team composed of a parent, teachers, principal and reading specialist to determine whether a student should be promoted to the fourth grade.   

For most of the day parents and educators packed the entrance to the House chambers trying to convince Representatives to override Fallin's Veto.

"It's really detrimental," Angela VanZanten told one lawmaker. She came to the capitol after watching her son receive his honor roll certificate in the morning. However he has dyslexia and didn't pass the 3rd grade reading test and doesn't qualify for any exemptions.

"After the meeting we had with his school yesterday, he will be retained next year if this bill doesn't pass," she explained Wednesday morning.

The house voted 79 to 11 to override the Governor's Veto. Twenty minutes later the Senate voted 45 to 2. Because there was an emergency clause in the bill, lawmakers needed ¾ of lawmakers to override the video.

"I'm very excited. This is great. This is wonderful news," said VanZanten after the vote.

Throughout the day members of the Governor's staff were also outside the House chambers.  And lawmakers say the Governor was making personal phone calls. And after the vote, the Governor said the action doesn't fix the real problem.

"Nothing changes the fact that we still have 8,000 third graders that can't read at grade level," said Fallin. "So nothing was resolved today other than we're going to throw out our standards and go back to the way we were doing it in the past. As a mother, I think that's a great disservice to our children."

House bill 2625 immediately became law Wednesday after the Senate voted. This is the second time this session lawmakers overrode the Governor's veto.