ST. PAUL (AP) -- People would have to give permission to banks, doctors or telephone companies to allow them to share personal information with their subsidiaries, telemarketers or even the state Department of Health.
Requiring such permission is the guiding principle behind four new DFL-sponsored privacy protection bills that will be introduced in the Legislature this week.
DFL lawmakers and Attorney General Mike Hatch sought to bring attention to the issue in a news conference Monday.
For the most part, the bills mirror proposals that were introduced -- but not passed -- last session.
Democrats blame Republicans for that failure, but said they hope to work together this year.
Republicans, meanwhile, said they aren't opposed to passing privacy laws and expect to have several of their own.
House Majority Leader Tim Pawlenty, R-Eagan, said he called Hatch to discuss the topic last week. He said his phone calls were not returned.
"They were preparing for a press conference, not a discussion," Pawlenty said.
Both sides said there is broad popular concern around the issue, though they differ on specifics.
Last year, Republican offered a package that allowed people to opt out of having their information shared or sold, but did not require businesses to specifically seek permission to do so.
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