Gov. Mark Dayton has vetoed an E-Verify bill that would have required the state to use a federal program for ascertaining that all new state hires are legally employable.
In his veto letter (PDF), Dayton said Minnesota already has a federally audited process that checks the identity of new employees and whether they can be hired under the federal mandates.
Dayton also said an audit found lots of problems with the federal E-Verify program, showing it is vulnerable to fraud and inaccuracy. And he noted that many, including the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce, opposed the bill and want immigration issues to be handled by the federal government, not the state.
Dayton also wrote:
“Requiring use of the E-Verify system would result in an inefficient and duplicative process, which could create appearances of unfair treatment and, thereby, cause an increase in employment litigation. I also believe that requiring the use of E-Verify in the State’s hiring process would decrease our ability to provide fair and legal scrutiny of employability for applicants, as we do now.”
Republican state Sen. Al DeKruif, the bill’s chief author, responded to the veto:
“I am disappointed with the Governor’s veto today – rejecting a
common sense, bipartisan measure to ensure our employees are eligible to work in the U.S. In our role as stewards of the taxpayer dollar, we should consider what methods and resources we have available to limit waste. By using the existing e-verify system, we can determine an employee’s eligibility prior to spending taxpayer dollars on costly training.
“Republicans and Democrats came together to pass this bill,
protecting taxpayers and streamlining the identification process to determine employee eligibility. I had hoped the Governor could set aside his veto pen and work with us to get something good done for Minnesota.”