February 2, 2021 Updated: February 2, 2021 1:15 a.m.

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) – Alabama lawmakers will return to Montgomery on Tuesday for the 2021 regular session, which will be conducted differently due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The legislature meets at noon. Republican lawmakers have stated that legislation protecting businesses and others from civil liability during the COVID-19 pandemic will be a top priority in the first few weeks of the session. Other important issues include gambling legislation, a state prison crisis, and medical marijuana legislation.

Legislators must draw new congressional districts this year, but that can be done in a special session later in the year.

Governor Kay Ivey will give lawmakers her annual state of the art speech on Tuesday evening, but lawmakers will be watching remotely.

The governor signed agreements to rent two new state prisons on Monday, which has sparked objections from some lawmakers.

Legislators plan to meet for two weeks and then take a break to review precautions for COVID-19.