Volume 20 Number 10 – June 3, 2019
25th, 26th, 27th & 28th legislative days
Legislature Approves Constitutional Amendment for Appointed State School Board, Adjourns Sine Die
Late Friday afternoon, the Alabama legislature adjourned sine die for the 2019 legislative session.
On the final day, the House approved an amendment to the state constitution to replace the state’s elected Board of Education with an education commission appointed by the governor and confirmed by the state Senate.
Under the plan, the… Continue reading
Volume 20 Number 9 – May 24, 2019
22nd, 23rd & 24th legislative days
Senate Approves General Fund Budget; House Committee Approves Education Trust Fund Budget
On Tuesday, the Senate approved the $2.1 billion state general fund budget by a unanimous vote. The House moved to non-concur on the budget, so it now goes to conference committee.
The budget sets aside an extra $7 million for the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency (ALEA) to hire 50 new state troopers, increases the… Continue reading
Volume 20 Number 8 – May 17, 2019
19th, 20th & 21st legislative days
Senate Passes Bill to Allow Birmingham Economic Development Project to Move Forward
Monday Night Brewing, a craft brewery based in Atlanta and new client of Christie Strategy Group, has signed a contingent lease as part of the Denham Building project in downtown Birmingham. Unfortunately, Alabama law prevents a manufacturer from owning a brewpub; SB 404 by Sen. Rodger Smitherman (D – Birmingham) would change that.
The… Continue reading
Volume 20 Number 7 – May 10, 2019
16th, 17th & 18th legislative days
Bill to Change Broadband Grant Program Approved by Full Senate
SB 90 by Sen. Clay Scofield (R – Guntersville) would make changes to the Alabama Broadband Accessibility Act by expanding the definition of an “unserved area,” increasing the percentage of project costs eligible for grant funding, and allowing for “middle mile” projects.
The bill was approved by the full Senate on Wednesday by a vote of… Continue reading
Volume 20 Number 6 – May 3, 2019
14th & 15th legislative days
Legislation to Allow Electric Utilities to Provide Broadband Approved by House of Representatives
After extended debate on Thursday, the House approved HB400 by Rep. Randall Shedd (R – Cullman), which will allow electric co-ops, municipal electric companies, and Alabama Power Company to offer broadband service. The final vote count for approval was 92 – 2.
The bill was first on the Special Order calendar, chosen by the… Continue reading
Volume 20 Number 5 – April 26, 2019
12th & 13th legislative days
Lottery Bill Approved by Senate
Late Thursday afternoon, the Senate approved a constitutional amendment calling for a statewide vote on the lottery.
SB 220 by Sen. Greg Albritton (R – Atmore) calls for a paper lottery and allows Alabamians to participate in Mega Millions jackpots. If approved by the House, the proposal will appear on the March 2020 primary election ballot.
One significant amendment offered by Sen.… Continue reading
Volume 20 Number 4 – April 19, 2019
10th & 11th legislative days
Bill to Freeze Police Jurisdictions Approved by the Senate
On Thursday, the Senate passed the committee substitute to SB 23, by Sen. Chris Elliott (R – Fairhope). This legislation restricts the extraterritorial jurisdiction that can be exercised by municipal governments.
Working with representatives of the Alabama League of Municipalities and other organizations, Sen. Elliott offered a substitute to this bill in committee earlier in the process. The… Continue reading
Volume 20 Number 3 – April 12, 2019
8th & 9th legislative days
Ethics Bill Stalls in Committee
The Senate Judiciary Committee discussed but did not take action on SB 230, which would overhaul the state’s ethics law.
The bill would make changes to the current ethics law, including eliminating an existing ban on gifts and instead requiring lobbyists to report everything they give.
The Ethics Commission Executive Director and Attorney General oppose the bill because they say it will… Continue reading
Volume 20 Number 2 – April 5, 2019
5th, 6th & 7th legislative days
House Approves Bill to Exempt Economic Developers from Ethics Requirements
On Thursday, the House approved HB 289 by Rep. Alan Baker (R – Brewton) by a vote of 94 – 4. Under the bill, economic developers would not be considered lobbyists and would not be required to register with the state or disclose their employers and activity.
A similar bill was signed into law last year,… Continue reading
Volume 20 Number 1 – March 22, 2019
2nd, 3rd & 4th legislative days
Regular Session Restarts
The legislature reconvened the regular session on Tuesday after approving the Rebuild Alabama infrastructure funding program and adjourning the special session last week.
Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh (R – Anniston) started the session off with a bang by moving his bill to allow for Alabamians to donate a portion of their state income tax returns to “We Build the Wall, Inc.”… Continue reading