Minn. Capitol 1st Day Won't Showcase Opening Bills

Updated: 01/08/2013 8:47 AM KSTP.com By: Jennie Olson

The 2013 session's opening day for Minnesota legislators will come with pomp, ceremony and the traditional oath. The first batch of bills will wait, however.
    
The initial legislation will be introduced on Thursday.
    
It's a process that has plenty of symbolic importance. The majority party - in this case, Democrats - signals its main priorities with their first bills.
    
In recent sessions, House File 1 has dealt with environmental permitting streamlining, children's health measures or sex-crime crackdowns. Previous versions of Senate File 1 have covered economic development proposals, school aid, how to spend federal stimulus grants and financing plans for public works projects.

Lawmakers have a long to-do list this session. Some of the big issues include the creation of a health insurance exchange, the ratification of state employee contracts, the possible legalization of gay marriage, an expansion of early voting, and a new two-year budget.

The state faces a $1.1 billion deficit.

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