The Clarion-Ledger, 2/4/8

Today is the deadline for introduction of general bills in the Legislature, but many hot-topic issues already have hit the committee tables and chamber floors.

Funds for Medicaid and education – two of the highest-dollar appropriations – are expected to dominate debate this week.

An election-reform package, a bill placing more restrictions on contracts between the attorney general and private attorneys, and legislation restricting casinos to only seven counties also will be up for discussion.

In the Senate, a bill that would prevent some of the state’s community mental health centers from cutting services is pending in the Appropriations Committee.