Lawmakers Vow to Put Differences Aside

Lawmakers Vow to Put Differences Aside

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Govenor Leavitt delivers his annual State of the State address tonight. He's expected to address this year's large budget shortfall.

The speech comes a day after the opening session of the State Legislature. News Specialist Kimberly Houk reports on how the first day went.

It was a day where all lawmakers vowed to put their differences behind them for the next 45 days, to come together to get things done for Utah.

But that might be difficult to do with the many tough issues state lawmakers face this year.

They have more than $300-million less to work with in this year's budget, which has lobby groups vowing to spend every day on the hill fighting to save their programs.

From the Utah Education Association to Medicaid recipients, all are fearful of the difference the cuts will make in their lives.

Medicaid recipient Tina Johnson says, "It scares me to death. I don't want to go into a nursing home. And I don't think that's what we should have to do."

Other tough issues are banks wanting to tax credit unions, plans to restrict the state's abortion law, a tuition tax credit for parents who want to send their students to private schools, and regulating hazardous and radioactive waste.

The legislature has the next 45 days to resolve these issues. It's not going to be easy and many leaders are already pleading for civility from all throughout the process.

The next 45 days in session includes weekends.

The State of the State address will be carried live on KSL starting tonight at 6:00.

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