1/7/2013 8:36:00 AM Hamilton upbeat as 2013
legislative session begins
Optimism reigned as Rep. Rod Hamilton and Sen. Bill Weber visited with the Cottonwood County board of commissioners recently. However, as Hamilton pointed out, it seems unlikely things could get more difficult than they were last year. "Last session was the most difficult one I've ever been through, and that includes the veto override," said Hamilton, who was first elected in 2004. The veto Hamilton refers to is the gas tax portion of the transportation bill a few years ago. Hamilton was one of a few Republican lawmakers to cross party lines to vote for the bill. In return, he received assurances that the Highway 60 expansion would be completed. Putting politics aside, Hamilton said the most positive thing heading into the session is that all the cash reserves are filled and the state is starting to pay back the funds borrowed through the "education shift." "All of the indicators are positive," Hamilton said. "You have to remember, we were sitting here two years ago looking at a $5.3 billion deficit."