Section 16.  Every bill which shall have passed the legislature shall be certified by the presiding officers and clerks of both houses and shall thereupon be presented to the governor.  If the governor approves it, the governor shall sign it and it shall become law.  If the governor does not approve such bill, the governor may return it, with the governor's objections to the legislature.  Except for items appropriated to be expended by the judicial and legislative branches, the governor may veto any specific item or items in any bill which appropriates money for specific purposes by striking out or reducing the same; but the governor shall veto other bills, if at all, only as a whole.

The governor shall have ten days to consider bills presented to the governor ten or more days before the adjournment of the legislature sine die, and if any such bill is neither signed nor returned by the governor within that time, it shall become law in like manner as if the governor had signed it.


The governor shall have forty-five days, after the adjournment of the legislature sine die, to consider bills presented to the governor less than ten days before such adjournment, or presented after adjournment, and any such bill shall become law on the forty-fifth day unless the governor by proclamation shall have given ten days' notice to the legislature that the governor plans to return such bill with the governor's objections on that day.  The legislature may convene at or before noon on the forty-fifth day in special session, without call, for the sole purpose of acting upon any such bill returned by the governor.  In case the legislature shall fail to so convene, such bill shall not become law.  Any such bill may be amended to meet the governor's objections and, if so amended and passed, only one reading being required in each house for such passage, it shall be presented again to the governor, but shall become law only if the governor shall sign it within ten days after presentation.

In computing the number of days designated in this section, the following days shall be excluded:  Saturdays, Sundays, holidays and any days in which the legislature is in recess prior to its adjournment as provided in section 10 of this article. [Am Const Con 1968 and election Nov 5, 1968; am SB 1943-74 (1974) and election Nov 5, 1974; ren and am Const Con 1978 and election Nov 7, 1978]

Cross References

  Computation of time, see §1-29.

  Holidays, see §§8-1 and 2.

  Publication of session laws by revisor of statutes, see §23G-13.

Attorney General Opinions

  An item in an appropriation bill vetoed in toto has no legal existence; excess funds from another item therein cannot be transferred to it.  Att. Gen. Op. 64-3.

  Effective date of an act.  Absence of specific provision not fatal defect.  Att. Gen. Op. 86-12.

  Governor's proclamations for five bills, where the last paragraph of the proclamation for each bill referenced "House Bill No. 85", rather than the correct bill numbers mentioned in the prior two clauses of the respective proclamations, satisfied this section's requirement that "the governor by proclamation shall have given ten days' notice to the legislature that the governor plans to return such bill", such that the governor had authority to veto those bills.  Att. Gen. Op. 05-2.

Case Notes

  Oahu Transportation Plan memorandum of agreement held not in violation of constitution.  389 F. Supp. 1102.

  Provisions of section relating to governor's veto power do not require the legislature to enact separate bills for the legislative, judicial and executive branches.  58 H. 25, 564 P.2d 135.

  Act applied from the day governor approved and signed it; no notification required.  59 H. 430, 583 P.2d 955.

  The plain language of this section requires the governor to (1) give notice at any time before midnight on the tenth day prior to the forty-fifth day after adjournment sine die, and (2) return the bills he or she intends to veto no later than the forty-fifth day after adjournment sine die.  105 H. 28, 93 P.3d 670.