In an interview that aired on this week's broadcast of Alabama Public Television's "Capitol Journal," State Senate Pro-Tem Greg Reed (R-Jasper) offered a preview of what to expect in the early stages of this year's legislative session.

Reed told "Capitol Journal" host Todd Stacy during the interview at last month's Innovate Alabama event in Birmingham that school choice and election legislation were possibilities.

"Well, I think that we've done a lot of preparation," he said. "You know, I was pleased to have some discussions with the majority leader and others talking about our planning has been sooner this year. You know, if you think back to the first year of the quadrennium, last year, we had the elections, inauguration, and organizational session. A lot of things going on, then wow, we were ready for the first session of the new quadrennium. I think you're going to see some legislation that's been well thought out."

"We've been able to plan some more, and I think that's wise," Reed continued. "I think there are going to be several elements here. There may be some elements that were very important to legislators that we did not deal with last year that may in some ways be deemed controversial — some topics associated with elections, issues associated with school choice. Some of those issues we may hear about again."

SEE ALSO: Ivey says education savings account bill in works for next session — 'My goal is for Alabama to be the most school choice-friendly state in the nation'

The Walker County Republican also teased more economic development expansion on the heels of a 2023 special session within the regular session that renewed existing law.

"I think there is going to be more economic development news. There's going to be more economic development opportunities to where we are adding things to 'The Game Plan,' to be able to take the next step," Reed said. "A lot of that is being developed now. I think the thought that that's going to be important, again more of a bipartisan kind of approach. And then we've got a great economy in Alabama. That's yielded great budget receipts. So, we're going to have some additional surpluses and carry-forwards in the budget. We're going to have to decide what to do with those. That's going to be real important. It's going to be a very busy session with a lot going on right from the get-go."

Jeff Poor is the editor in chief of 1819 News and host of "The Jeff Poor Show," heard Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-noon on Mobile's FM Talk 106.5. To connect or comment, email [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @jeff_poor.

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