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Legislature makes it a crime for non-veterans to take parking spaces reserved for military veterans

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Tuesday, the Alabama Legislature awarded final approval to a bill that makes it a crime for those who do not qualify to park in spaces specifically reserved for Purple Heart and medal of valor recipients, former prisoners of war or other military veterans.

House Bill 92 was sponsored by State Rep. Barry Moore, R-Enterprise, who chairs the House Military and Veterans Affairs Committee.

“More and more businesses are setting aside special parking spaces reserved for military veterans who were wounded, taken prisoner, or presented a medal for valor in defense of our country,” Moore said. “It is unconscionable to think that someone who does not fall under these categories would park in a space reserved for our nation’s heroes, but it happens quite often. This new law will ensure that those who display such blatant disrespect will be punished appropriately.”

Any individual who illegally parks in a space reserved for military veterans or active personnel will be subject to a $25 fine for the first offense, a $50 fine for the second offense and $100 for each subsequent offense.

House Bill 92 also states that Purple Heart and medal of valor recipients, former POWs and other veterans who do not possess distinctive state license plates denoting their status may apply to the Alabama Department of Veterans Affairs for a special placard that may be placed in their windshield while utilizing reserved parking.

The bill passed the House during House Military Appreciation Day, which was last Thursday. The Senate passed the bill, though they amended it.

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On Tuesday, the House voted to concur with the Senate. The bill now goes to Gov. Kay Ivey’s desk for her review and signature.

Moore is leaving the House at the end of his current term. He will be running for Congress in the 2nd District as a Republican.  Congresswoman Martha Roby, R-Montgomery, former Congressman Bobby Bright, retired Army Sergeant Major Tommy Amason, and former Alabama court system Administrator Rich Hobson are all running in the Republican primary for Congress.

Audri Scott Williams and Tabitha Isner are running in the Democratic primary.

Both major party primaries are on June 5, 2018.

Brandon Moseley is a former reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter.

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