By Jon Kuhl
State legislative leaders from across the country gathered in Washington last week for NCSL’s annual legislative leaders meeting. The meeting began with briefings on sequestration and immigration reform; hot topics in Washington and state capitols.
During lunch on Thursday, leaders heard from former Mississippi Governor and Chairman of the Republican National Committee Haley Barbour. Following Barbour’s talk, the leaders visited Capitol Hill for briefings from House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), Congressman Luke Messer (R-Ind.), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Congressman Xavier Becerra (D-Calif.) and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.). In the evening on Thursday, legislative leaders heard about deficit reduction efforts in Canada from Tony Clement, President of the Canadian Treasury Board and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario.briefing from U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. Secretary LaHood was followed by former Vermont Governor and Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean.
Up next was a discussion on technology and the economy with Michael Powell, former FCC Chairman and current President of the National Cable and Telecommunications Association. Following Chairman Powell was a question and answer session with David Agnew, White House Director of Intergovernmental Affairs.