By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
Tuesday, April 11, 2017, the Alabama House of Representatives passed House Bill 334 (HB334) which would allow the home addresses of Law Enforcement officers, District Attorney and Assistant District to be redacted from Statement of Economic Interest reports to the Alabama Ethics Commission so that their personal addresses are not available to the public.
HB334 is sponsored by state Representative Mack Butler (R-Rainbow City). Butler said that under the current law only undercover officers have their home addresses redacted from their Statement of Economic Interest that is filed with the Alabama Ethics Commissioin. Presently the public can look up the ethics form to gather information about an officer, state employee, or elected official and that includes their home address.
State Representative Napoleon Bracy (D-Mobile) expressed concerns that bad cops could be helped if all of the facts about them were not known by the public if something happened.
State Representative Juandalynn Givan (D-Birmingham) said, “I have a problem with making exceptions for one group. I don’t want my address to be known either. That their address is going to be public comes with the job. I have street smarts. I know in the street that this is not going to work.”
Rep. Givan said “We are opening up Pandora’s box. These are the same folks the same people who would arrest you if they had to. They need to be able to be held to the same standard. We need to be passing bills to strengthen forms to be strengthening these laws.”
State Representative Mary Moore (D-Birmingham) questioned why the police and das were entitled to extra protection.
Rep. Butler said, “It s different I served six year on a school board for six years and we made some people mad but nobody ever go mad enough to come and try to kill me.”
Rep. Moore said, “As a legislator I get death threats all the time. It is the time that we live in. Every disagreement is solved with a gun.”
State Representative David Sessions (R-Grand Bay) said, “Anything to do to support law enforcement I am totally for it.”
State Representative John Rogers (D from Birmingham) said, “We get as many death threats as Police do. We should have the same protection.”
Butler said that if this passes then Law Enforcement would be able to do this retroactively to the Ethics forms already on file.
HB334 passed. It now moves on for consideration by the Alabama Senate.