GOP Legislators Predict New Life in 2011 for Dead Bills from 2010

A trio of East Tennessee lawmakers sat down recently with their local newspaper, the Cleveland Daily Banner, and laid out a few issues they expect the Tennessee Legislature to take up next year.

Among the policy matters on the minds of Riceville Republican Sen. Mike Bell and Cleveland GOP Reps. Eric Watson and Kevin Brooks are:

The GOP lawmakers indicated they believe the new 64-34-1 Republican majority in the House will help assure that issues that died last year in the nearly-split chamber have a better chance of passing this time around.

Rep. Bell also noted that Republican Gov-elect Bill Haslam has begun considering ways to consolidate some of the 21 state government departments.

Members of the General Assembly will officially start work on Tuesday, Jan. 11. The session expected to stretch through at least mid-Spring.