Ala. legislative session expected to be combative - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Ala. legislative session expected to be combative

Rep. John Rogers says state Democrats will oppose a rush to pass a bill favored by the GOP. Source: Alan Collins Rep. John Rogers says state Democrats will oppose a rush to pass a bill favored by the GOP. Source: Alan Collins
BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) -

The upcoming session of the Alabama legislature, which starts Tuesday, may be a combative one.

Alabama Republicans are pushing a conservative agenda that includes streamlining state government, more flexibility for state schools and protecting gun rights. Alabama Democrats expect to oppose the Republican agenda.

"Hell of a year in Montgomery. Everybody come down and see the show," Democratic State Rep. John Rogers of Birmingham said.

Rogers said state Democrats will oppose a rush to pass the bill favored by the GOP.

"Going to be a bloody, knockdown, drag out, eye-gouging teeth knock out session. The Republicans are hell bent on a three day work week to front load their bills so they can run over Democrats," Rogers said.

Alabama Democrats favor a ten percent pay hike for teachers, but Republicans believe the pay increase would be too costly. Republicans said the flexibility bill to give local systems waivers from state policies for curriculum, staffing and budgets.

"I think there is going to be a debate on school choice issues. I know the house is more interested in charter schools. I know people in the senate would like to see more of parental choice regardless of where the charter school setup is," Senator Scott Beason of Gardendale said.

Rogers says the flexibility bill will open the state for charter schools to be funded at the cost to public schools. The Democrat says the minority party will be using delaying tactics to stop the rush to pass out the republican agenda.

Even Beason says there should not be a rush to pass big issues.

"Slow the process down. Make sure we know what we are doing. Make sure we don't have unintended consequences. And if you get all fired up you miss things," Beason said.

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