The way Welsh Assembly is run will be revamped as part of a "bumper" Queen's Speech for Wales, Welsh Secretary Peter Hain said today.
Mr Hain said the public should "fasten their seatbelts" as there were further reforms in other areas to come.
The government's legislative programme will see a Commissioner for Older People created and more powers over transport devolved to the Assembly, as well as giving Cardiff Bay the power to ban smoking in public places.
But changes to the Assembly itself are likely to prove more controversial. The government was to see the institution become "clearer and more accountable to the public", and the proposed Government of Wales Bill would separate the legislative and executive, change the voting system and provide "enhanced" powers.
The precise meaning of "enhanced" is likely to create tensions within Labour in particular, whose MPs are largely sceptical about the idea of giving Wales similar powers as the Scottish parliament - and idea favoured by First Minister Rhodri Morgan.
Mr Hain said today: "The new Government has truly hit the ground running with up to 40 Bills in a bumper Queen's Speech for Wales in our busiest Welsh legislative programme ever.
"Even in the days before devolution it was unheard of that Wales would stake such a claim on the legislative programme ahead. Not only does this Queen's Speech deliver on quantity but the quality is there too. The trailblazing Commissioner for Older People (Wales) Bill, the Welsh clauses on public smoking in the Health Improvement and Protection Bill and the devolution of transport powers all demonstrate continuing delivery for Wales.
"We will introduce a Bill following publication of a White Paper to develop democratic devolution in Wales, with our clear commitment to enhance the Assembly's powers while reforming its structure and electoral system to make a more accountable legislature for the people of Wales."
He added: "We have a historic Queen's Speech for Wales and it is exciting to think that this is only the first Queen's Speech of this term of office. My advice to the people of Wales would be to fasten your seatbelts, with much more to come as we continue working with the National Assembly to provide a world-class Wales for all."
Welsh Economic Development Minister Andrew Davies said the proposed Transport (Wales) Bill, together with last year's Railways Act, represented the biggest transfer of power to Wales since 1999.
"We have had very few powers to do anything in transport other than encourage people to do things," he said.
"The Transport Wales Bill gives us powers to develop and integrated system in Wales."
It will also enable the Assembly to give financial assistance to develop more air routes into Wales and between North and South Wales.
He said it was "difficult to comment" on proposals to strengthen the Assembly until the relevant White Paper was published.
First Minister Rhodri Morgan said the plans would "give the Assembly the tools to do the job that the people of Wales require - better public services with greater accountability".
Plaid Cymru's Ieuan Wyn Jones said a referendum should be held on giving the Assembly more powers.
"The Assembly should decide the question and the terms of the referendum," he said.
Shadow Secretary of State for Wales Bill Wiggin said: "Mr Hain is right to say the people of Wales should fasten their seatbelts, with Mr Hain at the wheel they're in for a bumpy ride.
"The Government's plans for the next Parliamentary session fail to tackle some of the biggest issues affecting Wales. Wales has been failed by Labour for the past eight years and there is nothing in the Queen's Speech to suggest this is going to change. Wales continues to be neglected and taken for granted by a Government far too complacent on the real issues affecting its people.
"With thousands on waiting lists, students facing tuition fees and further waste of public money the Government does not look set to change direction. Plans to give the assembly more legislative freedom will not alone tackle the problems facing the people of Wales.
"Mr Hain must grant the people of Wales a referendum to allow them to have a say in the matter. Wales deserves better than to be dictated to, and told by the Government what the future of devolution should be."