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Legislature

Alabama 2022 Legislative Report: Week 10

The Legislature will return for day 27 of the regular session on Tuesday, April 5.

The entrance to the Alabama Statehouse on South Union Street.

The Alabama Legislature convened for Day 24 of the Regular Session on Tuesday, March 29, and also met in session on Wednesday and Thursday for Days 25 and 26. Committee meetings were held throughout the week. 

The Legislature will return for Day 27 of the Regular Session on Tuesday, April 5 with the House convening at 1:30 p.m. and the Senate at 2:30 p.m. There are 4 session days remaining in the Regular Session.  

DURING THE WEEK 

The Senate substituted and amended the $8.2 billion Education Budget legislation (HB135 by Representative Danny Garrett). The budget includes funding for raising minimum salaries of teachers and provides for enhanced payment for degrees and experience. Other changes from House version are a 25% increase for prison education, $22 million more for Pre-K, and appropriation increases to the Community College System, Archives, and Examiners of Public Accounts. 

The House and Senate concurred with the Conference Committee report on the $2.7 General Fund Budget (SB106 by Senator Greg Albritton). The bill now goes to the Governor. 

Several resolutions were adopted in the House commending the House members who are not running for re-election. The resolutions outline some of their accomplishments as members of the House and thanks them for serving the citizens of Alabama. 

SIGNIFICANT INTRODUCTIONS THIS WEEK 

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HOUSE 

HB525 by Rep. Mooney: To affirm Alabama’s sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment to the United State Constitution. 

HB530 by Rep. Mooney: To establish the Joint Legislative Committee on the Nullification of Federal Laws to review federal laws, regulations, and executive orders in order to determine their validity, and to authorize the committee to recommend to the Legislature that it enact legislation to nullify a specific federal law, regulation, or executive order. 

SENATE 

SB336 by Sen. Albritton: To establish the South Baldwin Regional Workforce Development Authority and provide for the composition, duties, and meetings of the board of directors of the authority. 

SIGNIFICANT COMMITTEE ACTION THIS WEEK 

HOUSE 

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HB401 by Rep. Meadows: To create the Every Mother Matters Act to support certain services for women before and after childbirth, require physicians to confirm that a woman has received a free resource access assistance offer prior to performing an abortion, and to provide for the provision and contents of the offer (Public Hearing but no vote in House Health Committee). 

HB481 by Rep. Scott: To provide further for what constitutes a blighted or economically distressed area for the purposes of establishing a tax increment district and to allow the redevelopment or revitalization project to continue through the creation of a subsequent tax increment district after expiration of the existing district, but retain the original baseline (Amended in House County and Municipal Government Committee). 

SB182 by Sen. Livingston: To prohibit any governmental entity of the state from adopting rules, requirements, ordinances, or resolutions to prohibit the otherwise lawful operation of motor fuel retailers that are operating in compliance with existing state and federal law, when it is based solely on the type of motor fuel sold, processed, or delivered (House Transportation, Utilities and Infrastructure Committee). 

SB255 by Sen. Orr: To require certain emergency rules, orders, or directives issued by the State Health Officer be approved by the Governor and a copy filed with the Secretary of State before the rule, order, or other directive has the full force and effect of law (House State Government Committee). 

SB260 by Sen. Smitherman: To provide further for what constitutes a blighted or economically distressed area for the purposes of establishing a tax increment district and to allow the redevelopment or revitalization project to continue through the creation of a subsequent tax increment district after expiration of the existing district, but retain the original baseline (House County and Municipal Government Committee). 

SB269 by Sen. Waggoner: To authorize the Governor to appoint honorary generals to the Alabama National Guard (House Military and Veterans Affairs Committee). 

SENATE 

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HB50 by Rep. Hollis: To establish a grant program for awarding funds to public schools to provide no cost feminine hygiene products to students (Senate Finance and Taxation Education Committee). 

HB162 by Rep. Greer: To provide that up to $6,000 of taxable retirement income is exempt from state income tax for individuals 65 and older (Amended in Senate Finance and Taxation Committee). 

HB234 by Rep. Rafferty: To provide for a food truck license in a Class 1 municipality (Birmingham) that would allow a food truck to sell alcoholic beverages for consumption in open containers within a defined boundary in the vicinity of the food truck (Senate Tourism Committee). 

HB315 by Rep. Givan: To create the crime of misrepresenting the police jurisdiction of a municipality and establish penalties for violations (Senate Judiciary Committee). 

SB172 by Sen. Singleton: To provide that a direct wine shipper licensee or wine fulfillment center licensee may ship wine to an Alabama resident in any wet or dry county or municipality in the state (Senate Fiscal Responsibility and Economic Development Committee). 

SB303 by Sen. Orr: To change the reporting date requirements of state agencies which administer economic tax incentives, to establish sunset dates for tax incentive programs, and to establish future sunset dates for extended tax incentive programs (Senate Finance and Taxation Education Committee). 

HB304 by Sen. Baker: To provide that the governing body of a county or municipality has authority to approve or disapprove each new solid waste management site or a modified existing solid waste management site (Senate Fiscal Responsibility and Economic Development Committee). 

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SB315 by Sen. Jones: To provide that a nonprofit organization may apply for and be issued a license to host a wine festival (Amended in Senate Tourism Committee).. 

SB316 by Sen. Melson: To further provide for participation by electronic communication at meetings of governmental bodies (Public Hearing but no vote in Senate Governmental Affairs Committee). 

SB324 by Sen. Stutts: To require a registered certifying physician to obtain a negative pregnancy test from a woman of childbearing age before recommending medical cannabis, to require a medical cannabis dispensary site to require a negative pregnancy test for women of childbearing age before allowing them to purchase medical cannabis, and prohibit breast-feeding women from purchasing medical cannabis unless as a registered caregiver (Amended in Senate Children, Youth and Human Services Committee). 

SIGNIFICANT FLOOR PASSAGE THIS WEEK 

HOUSE 

HB176 by Rep. South: To authorize bussers and servers between the ages of 18 and 20 to serve alcoholic beverages in restaurants provided they do not serve as bartenders. 

HB284 by Rep. Coleman: To further provide for the crime of human trafficking and provide that coercion or deception is not required if the victim is incapable of consent by reason of being incapacitated, and further provide for the meaning of sexual servitude. 

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HB314 by Rep. Robbins: To remove existing code language that provides for custody of a child to be granted to a husband in cases of abandonment by the wife only after the child reaches seven years of age, require parties to submit a parenting plan in all case, and specify additional remedies when a parent fails to adhere to the time sharing schedule. 

HB337 by Rep. Shaver: To include additional activity that would constitute a felony for fleeing or attempting to elude a law enforcement officer. 

HB359 by Rep. C. Brown: To require that every criminal justice agency report certain case data that has been collected from sexual assault cases to the Alabama Criminal Justice Information Center. 

HB389 by Rep. Alexander: To limit the amount of money a municipality may retain from fines and penalties generated from traffic tickets. 

HB433 by Rep. M. Moore: To prohibit the construction or commencement of operation of a crematory within one-half mile of any residence or residential area within a municipality. 

HB442 by Rep. Hurst: To require public K-12 schools or a local school board to accept all forms of payment, including cash, for admission to school-sponsored sporting events that are open to the public. 

HB488 by Rep. Shaver: To provide a COVID-19 death benefit for first responders and authorize the beneficiaries or dependents of deceased emergency medical services personnel to receive the death benefit. 

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HB503 by Rep. Sorrells: To allow certain land owners to register and pay a fee for an earlier deer season start date. 

HB504 by Rep. Pettus: To provide that any state or local law enforcement officer may require and assist in moving a vehicle from the scene of an accident if the disabled vehicle creates a traffic hazard or obstructs traffic. 

HB514 by Rep. McCampbell: To prohibit the operation of a vehicle that contains a false or secret compartment, the purpose of which is to conceal, hide, or prevent discovery of a controlled substance, contraband or a person concealed for an unlawful purpose. 

SB56 by Sen. Orr: To prohibit state or local law enforcement from using facial recognition technology match results as the sole basis for making an arrest or for establishing probable cause in a criminal investigation (Amended in House). 

SB171 by Sen. Orr: To prohibit the use of the Common Core State Standards in public K-12 schools, and to implement steps to improve mathematics proficiency of public school kindergarten to fifth grade students. 

SB207 by Sen. Singleton: To prohibit the operation of a vehicle that contains a false or secret compartment, the purpose of which is to conceal, hide, or prevent discovery of a controlled substance, contraband or a person concealed for an unlawful purpose (Amended in House). 

SENATE 

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HB20 by Rep. Lee: To extend the existing sales and use tax exemption on parts, components, and systems used in the refurbishing of aircraft (Amended in Senate). 

HB134 by Rep. Baker: To modify the retirement benefits for Tier II plan members of the Teachers’ Retirement System by providing 30-year service retirement. 

HB135 by Rep. Garrett: Education Trust Fund Budget. 

HB136 by Rep. Garrett: To provide for a 4 percent pay increase for certain education employees for the fiscal year 2022-2023. 

HB391 by Rep. Clouse: To provide for a reduced minimum business privilege tax of $50 for taxable years beginning after December 31, 2022 and to provide a full exemption from the tax on amounts due of $100 or less for taxable years beginning after December 31, 2023. 

HB395 by Rep. Lovvorn: To create a new type of alcoholic beverage license that would authorize certain public universities that have a hospitality management program to produce, transfer, and sell alcoholic beverages on the licensed premises of the university in furtherance of its academic program (Amended in Senate). 

SB2 by Sen. Allen: To create the Alabama Second Amendment Preservation Act to prohibit the state and political subdivisions of the state, and their law enforcement officers, agents, and employees, from participating in the implementation or enforcement of any federal act, law, order, rule, or regulation relating to firearms, firearm accessories, or ammunition. 

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SB38 by Sen. Jones: A proposed Constitutional Amendment to merge the Office of State Auditor into the Office of State Treasurer after the expiration of the term of office of the State Auditor in January 2031. 

SB272 by Sen. Roberts: To allow licensed physicians to practice telemedicine in the state and allow prescriptions of certain medications without the physician meeting a patient in person. 

SB274 by Sen. Livingston: To exempt from sales taxation producer value added agricultural products that are sold by the producer, the producer’s family or the producer’s employees. 

SB282 by Sen. Gudger: To provide that only 10 percent of a municipalities budget may come from fines and penalties generated from traffic tickets with excess funds to be distributed to the Crime Victims’ Compensation Fund and the Fair Trial Tax Fund. 

SB296 by Sen. Livingston: A proposed Constitutional Amendment that would specify that counties and municipalities are exempt from the prohibition against issuing bonds to acquire real estate for economic and industrial development without a vote of the people. 

SB301 by Sen. Barfoot: To provide for additional criminal offenses that would prohibit a convicted person from owning or possessing a firearm or ammunition. 

SB311 by Sen. Williams: To allow certain land owners to register and pay a fee for an earlier deer season start date. 

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SB313 by Sen. Orr: To prohibit any public official or public employee from expending public funds to advocate in favor of or against statewide and local ballot measures. 

SB321 by Sen. Chesteen: To clarify that a business that provides rental and leasing services in a municipality, but has no other physical presence in the municipality, may be required to purchase a delivery license for not more than $100, with certain exceptions, for delivering rented equipment or property. 

SIGNIFICANT BILLS AWAITING ACTION BY THE GOVERNOR 

HB10 by Rep. C. Brown: To exempt all vessels and equipment used in commercial fishing from ad valorem tax, create a sales and use tax differential of one and one-half percent for the purchase and storage of all vessels and machinery used in the process of commercial fishing, and exempt bait and all materials and equipment used in the process of commercial fishing from sales and use tax. 

HB46 by Rep. Collins: To establish the State Seal of Biliteracy program to recognize graduates who have attained a high level of proficiency in speaking, reading, and writing in one or more languages in addition to English. 

HB70 by Rep. Reynolds: To provide a statutory definition for the phrase “real and present threat of substantial harm to self and others,” and would provide that the threat of substantial harm should be assessed in light of all relevant evidence and not just the individual’s behavior. 

HB335 by Rep. Blackshear: To authorize banks and financial institutions to charge a closing fee in a limited amount on loans of less than $1,500, subject to partial refund upon prepayment of the loan. 

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HB371 by Rep. Ellis: To clarify that the tax collecting official of a county may conduct public tax lien auctions through an online method. 

SB42 by Sen. Elliott: To provide that a homeowner’s association or condominium association may not prohibit the displaying of the flag of the State of Alabama on residential property within the association. 

SB59 by Sen. Singleton: To establish the Prison PREP Pilot Program for Small Business Development under the Board of Pardons and Paroles and the Department of Corrections. 

SB72 by Sen. Williams: To allow local boards of education and any other public educational entity that provides meals under the Child Nutrition Program of the Alabama State Department of Education, during an emergency or unanticipated event affecting public health or safety or causing supply chain disruptions, to purchase goods or services related to the program without advertisement or bidding if recommended by the State Superintendent of Education. 

SB106 by Sen. Albritton: General Fund Budget. 

SB111 by Sen. Albritton: To provide for a funded longevity bonus in addition to the retirement benefits of certain retirees and beneficiaries of the Employees’ Retirement System. 

SB171 by Sen. Orr: To prohibit the use of the Common Core State Standards in public K-12 schools, and to implement steps to improve mathematics proficiency of public school kindergarten to fifth grade students. 

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SB191 by Sen. Albritton: To make supplemental appropriations for the American Rescue Plan Act – State Small Business Credit Initiative Fund for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2022.

AND ON THE LIGHTER SIDE 

The Peanut is awaiting only the Governor’s signature to become the Official State Legume of Alabama (HB350 by Rep. Allen), now that both Houses have passed the bill. While a professor and research scientist at the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama, George Washington Carver developed hundreds of products using peanuts. The peanut will join the Yellowhammer (Official State Bird), the Alabama Red-bellied Turtle (Official State Reptile) and the Black Bear (Official State Mammal), among others, as an Official Symbol of the State of Alabama.

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