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In Frankfort, Opinions Differ On Session Agenda

Kentucky lawmakers are preparing for the 2011 General Assembly, which convenes Tuesday, but there are widely varying opinions on what should be addressed during the session. Senate President David Williams, who’s running for governor, is proposing an aggressive session agenda, including immigration, pension and tax code reform. And Williams predicts the Senate will act on the measures in the first four days of the session, when the focus usually is on election of new officers. “These bills will be introduced the first day. They’ll be available by Wednesday. And we feel that most of them will be over in the possession of the House by Friday,” he said. But House budget chairman Rick Rand says, not so fast. He says those are complicated issues to be tackling in a short, 30-day session. “You know, I think here in the House we like to be a little more deliberative in how we address those issues," Rand said. Meanwhile, Gov. Beshear, who’s seeking re-election, is offering a modest session agenda. He wants to tweak the Medicaid budget and raise the state’s drop-out age from 16 to 18.