The Alabama Senate on Thursday awarded final passage to a bill by State Rep. Chip Brown, R – Hollinger’s Island, that provides historic and much-needed tax cuts and exemptions to commercial fishing businesses operating throughout Alabama’s Gulf Coast region.
The measure now travels to Gov. Kay Ivey’s desk for signature.
“Alabama law currently provides the agricultural industry with tax exemptions and other benefits that are not currently extended to commercial fishing operations, which also harvest food,” Brown said. “Passage of this new law corrects a lingering injustice by extending the same taxation benefits to farmers and fishermen alike.”
Among the provisions of House Bill 10 are:
- Current Alabama law provides an ad valorem tax exemption only to vessels used in the commercial shrimping industry, but Brown’s bill would extend it to all forms of commercial fishing, including oyster farms operating within the state.
- Bait, equipment, and materials used by the commercial fishing industry would be exempt from both sales and use taxes under Brown’s legislation.
- The sales tax on purchases of commercial fishing vessels and the equipment and machinery used upon them would be reduced to one-and-a-half percent, which is the same rate levied upon purchases of farming and agricultural equipment.
- The excise tax on the “storage, use, or other consumption” of commercial fishing vessels and machinery would be reduced to one-and-a-half percent, which is the same rate levied upon the rest of the agricultural industry.
Once signed into law by the governor, Brown’s bill, which was carried in the Senate by Sen. David Sessions, R – Grand Bay, will take effect on January 1, 2023.