Major Issues: 2021 Legislative Session

Notice to Readers
Every year, the Office of Legislative Research (OLR) identifies and provides brief descriptions of important issues the General Assembly may face in the upcoming session. This report does not represent staff suggestions or recommendations. The office identifies issues based on interim studies; research requests; non-confidential discussions with legislators, other legislative participants, and executive branch agencies; as well as our general subject matter knowledge. We also consult with the Office of Fiscal Analysis (OFA) and the Legislative Commissioners’ Office (LCO) when selecting issues. The report is organized according to the committee that has primary jurisdiction over an issue. Because more than one committee may consider aspects of the same issue, descriptions may overlap. Where appropriate, we provide links to OLR reports and other documents that contain additional information.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the regular 2020 legislative session was effectively suspended on March 12 until it was adjourned sine die on May 6. The pandemic is anticipated to continue well into 2021 and will likely necessitate a number of significant logistical changes to the legislative process (e.g., virtual committee meetings). At this time, it is unclear what impact, if any, these changes will have on the substance and volume of legislation. In light of the circumstances, we especially caution readers not to interpret this document as a potential session agenda. Rather, the topics we have identified, apart from those directly related to the pandemic, are those that we believe would be applicable under normal circumstances.

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