The top issues for the next legislative session have already started to take shape. They'll be back at the Capitol at noon Tuesday.
The state's top man wants to see public safety at the center of reforms in the capitol this year.
"Make sure we put the victims first. Make sure we have public safety in mind. But to spend taxpayer money wisely when it comes to incarcerating violent offenders and see if there are opportunities for those non-violents," said Governor Phil Bryant in December.
A corrections and criminal justice task force finalized its recommendations on the issues last month. They say it will be a good starting point for crafting legislation.
"I'm optimistic about us being able to put together something for public safety in three months because I don't think it's a partisan issue. Everybody wants the same thing," explained Senator Kenneth Wayne Jones-D who chairs the Legislative Black Caucus.
Meanwhile, education advocates are all ears after Speaker Philip Gunn recently voiced support for across the board teacher pay raises.
"If we're demanding more. I think we should pay them more," said Gunn.
Senator Jones said Monday, "We don't need to get bogged down in the politics of that, give the teachers more money so we can recruit more teachers."
A more controversial issue is waiting in the wings..Common Core. Lawmakers from both sides of the aisle say the governor's order isn't the end of the discussion.
"We're looking at it now. We're pulling back the pages. We're looking at the legality of common core," described Senator Kenneth Wayne Jones.
Others are extending the call for more money to the roads and bridges. Senator Willie Simmons-D led a task force that traveled across the state discussing the infrastructure problems. He thinks a new gas tax could be the answer. Lt. Governor Tate Reeves disagrees.
"We've got to find other areas in the budget to cut to free up resources to do that," said Reeves.
Democrats say they'll start up the Medicaid expansion debate again this year. But know they'll have plenty of opposition.
While you were sleeping, the Internet never stopped… Here's what's trending today. Mobile user? Click here: Wasp nest built on window What would you do if you saw this on your window? It's like somethingMore >>
While you were sleeping, the Internet never stopped. Here's what's trending today.More >>
Monday, September 15 2014 10:55 PM EDT2014-09-16 02:55:55 GMT
Boone Police Officers received a call about the discovery of a dead body around 10:30 a.m. Saturday morning. The body was found in a wooded area adjacent to Poplar Grove Road near Appalachian State University. PoliceMore >>
The body was found in a wooded area adjacent to Poplar Grove Road near Appalachian State University.More >>
Tuesday, September 16 2014 7:31 AM EDT2014-09-16 11:31:48 GMT
(WMC) - A teen who pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the shooting death of this 10-year-old sister will serve several years in a Tennessee Department of Corrections Youth Facility. The teen, whoMore >>
A teen who pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the shooting death of his 10-year-old sister will serve several years in a Tennessee Department of Corrections Youth Facility.More >>
Monday, September 15 2014 5:39 PM EDT2014-09-15 21:39:25 GMT
Horrific details of a southern Indiana homicide were released Monday, including allegations that Joseph Oberhansley ate portions of Tammy Jo Blanton's brain, heart and lungs after stabbing her to death.More >>
Horrific details of a southern Indiana homicide were released Monday, including allegations that Joseph Oberhansley ate portions of Tammy Jo Blanton's brain, heart and lungs after stabbing her to death. More >>
Tuesday, September 16 2014 8:30 PM EDT2014-09-17 00:30:17 GMT
Lincoln County Sheriff Steve Rushing says his office is working a death pending case, involving two bodies found Monday afternoon.Family members went by to check on a mother and son and found both of themMore >>
The cause of death for the Lincoln Co. mother and son is still unknown. An update is provided.
Tuesday, September 16 2014 3:37 PM EDT2014-09-16 19:37:13 GMT
We're trying to get more information now on a body found in Jackson this morning. We have few details available, but JPD confirms a man was found dead around 5 am at I-55 North, near Beasley Road andMore >>
We have few details available, but JPD confirms a man was found dead around 5 am at I-55 North and Beasley Road.
Tuesday, September 16 2014 5:41 PM EDT2014-09-16 21:41:22 GMT
MPD: Woman wearing bra and panties, carrying bat caught trespassing at elementary school A woman wearing her bra and panties is accused of running into the cafeteria at Westside elementary school andMore >>
A woman wearing her bra and panties is accused of running into the cafeteria at Westside elementary school and causing a bizarre disturbance just before more than a hundred children were due to come in for lunch. More >>
Tuesday, September 16 2014 10:11 AM EDT2014-09-16 14:11:21 GMT
An 18-year-old University of Virginia student has been missing since Saturday and police are concerned about her safety. Hannah Elizabeth Graham sent her friends a text message around 1:20 a.m. on Saturday,More >>
An 18-year-old University of Virginia student has been missing since Saturday and police are concerned about her safety.More >>
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