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Alabama 2023 Legislative Report: Week 11

Many of the major pieces of legislation that dominated the last weeks of the session are pending action by the governor.

The Alabama Statehouse in Montgomery.
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The Alabama Legislature met for Days 28 and 29 of its 2023 Regular Session this past week. The Legislature will reconvene on Tuesday, June 6 for the final 30th day of the Session. 

Many of the major pieces of legislation that dominated the last weeks of the Session have passed and are pending action by the Governor. The budget bills (General Fund and Education Fund) and the supplemental appropriations bills for this fiscal year have been signed by the Governor. Major issues which have now passed include the grocery sales tax reduction (HB479 by Rep. Garrett), tax cut for overtime pay (HB217 by Rep. Daniels), one-time income tax refund (HB175 by Rep. Garrett), Port incentives (HB293 by Rep. Brown), body cam legislation (HB289 by Rep. Givan), enhanced punishments for criminal enterprises (SB143 by Sen. Barfoot), and School Choice (HB363 by Rep. Collins). 

There are 80 bills which are in position to be considered on the final day of the Legislature. Those include historic tax credit legislation (HB253 by Rep. Clarke), film and music tax incentives (HB429 by Rep. Kiel), ethics commission exculpatory evidence (SB103 by Sen. Orr), vaping restrictions and regulations (HB319 by Rep. Drummond), legislation to require manufacturers of internet enabled devices to activate filters (HB298 by Rep. Sells), legislation regarding food trucks in entertainment districts (HB304 by Rep. Rafferty) and legislation relative to open records (SB196 by Sen. Orr). 



SB56 by Sen. Orr: To require local boards of education to install, maintain, and operate video cameras in certain self-contained classrooms providing special education services, if the funding to do so is available, and to provide protections for the use of video recordings (Enrolled). 

SB99 by Sen. Givhan: To increase the expense allowance and mileage reimbursement paid to jurors by order or rule of the Alabama Supreme Court (Enrolled). 

SB103 by Sen. Orr: To require the State Ethics Commission to provide an alleged violator with certain exculpatory evidence (Conference Committee). 

SB143 by Sen. Barfoot: To identify criminal enterprise members and enhance penalties for criminal enterprise related criminal activities (Enrolled). 

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SB150 by Sen. Givhan: To provide that once a judge of probate vacates a map or plat that is recorded in electronic form, he or she shall issue a certificate indicating that the map or plat has been vacated, and the certificate shall be made a part of the property records to which it pertains (Enrolled). 

SB192 by Sen. Albritton: To provide that industrial access roads constructed by a public corporation and used for secured entry to an industrial facility shall not constitute a taking of public property (Enrolled). 

SB197 by Sen. Orr: To require state agencies to take certain measures to prevent fraud before paying benefits to recipients (Enrolled). 

SB205 by Sen. Orr: To add additional entities, including tax increment districts, improvement districts and cooperative improvement districts, as government units that may receive loans or financial assistance from the Alabama Transportation Infrastructure Bank (Enrolled). 

SB206 by Sen. Chambliss: To establish the crime of retail theft that is committed when a person uses various means to deprive a merchant of all or part of the value of merchandise, including concealing merchandise on his or her person, altering or removing price tags, concealing merchandise in other containers, failing to scan items or otherwise pay for items at self-checkout registers, and other means, with penalties for a violation being contingent upon the aggregate value of the items stolen (Enrolled). 

SB223 by Sen. Figures: To include a child witness in the definition of “a physical offense, sexual offense, or violent offense” for the purpose of the Child Physical and Sexual Abuse Victim Protection Act (Enrolled). 

SB224 by Sen. Figures: To clarify that for the purpose of the crime of transmitting obscene material to a child, a child is a person who is under 16 years of age, and to provide that a violation of incest when the victim is under 16 years of age is a Class A felony (Enrolled). 

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SB258 by Rep. Jones: To authorize the Department of Examiners of Public Accounts to conduct a one-time audit of a public corporation organized under Article 9 of Chapter 50 of Title 11, Code of Alabama 1975, providing water service if the department suspects fraud or mismanagement of funds (Enrolled). 

SB261 by Sen. Roberts: To prohibit a governmental entity from entering into a public contract for goods or services with certain companies or businesses that engage in the economic boycott of businesses in certain sectors and industries, that fail to meet or commit to meet certain environmental standards, that fail to meet or commit to meet certain corporate governance criteria, or that fail to facilitate certain activities (Enrolled). 

SB263 by Sen. Chesteen: To change the terms failing school and nonfailing school to priority school and qualifying school, respectively, to revise or add definitions relating to educational service providers, poverty threshold for eligible students, eligible students with unique needs, qualifying expenses for those students, private tutoring, resident school district, and expand scholarships for eligible students attending priority or qualifying schools (Enrolled). 

SB281 by Rep. Albritton: To allow former and current chairs of the USS Alabama Battleship Commission to use the USS Alabama Distinctive license plate (Enrolled). 

SB285 by Sen. Jones: To provide that a nonprofit organization may be issued a license to host a wine festival (Enrolled). 

SB292 by Sen. Roberts: To provide for the Department of Revenue to grant certificates of exemption from sales and use taxes to contractors and subcontractors licensed by the State Licensing Board for General Contractors for the purchase of building materials and construction materials to be used in the construction of a project for an entity that is exempt by law from paying sales and use taxes (Enrolled). 

SB309 by Sen. Chambliss: To require state entities procuring the professional services of architects, landscape architects, engineers, land surveyors, geoscientists, and other similar professionals to procure the contracts based on a qualification-based selection process (Enrolled). 

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SB313 by Sen. Butler: To require the Department of Economic and Community Affairs to oversee the design, construction, and installation of a replica Saturn 1B Rocket, if the original rocket is beyond restoration or repair, at the most northern I-65 rest stop in the state (Enrolled). 


HB23 by Rep. Brown: To permit volunteer fire departments and rescue squads to use restricted funds to buy kitchen equipment and food for the fire station, and authorize mileage reimbursement to members for travel to and from a call (Enrolled). 

HB153 by Rep. Treadaway: To make it a crime to place an electronic tracking devise on the property of another person without the consent of the owner (Enrolled). 

HB168 by Rep. Underwood: To increase various threshold dollar amounts for which competitive bidding is generally required and to authorize those dollar amounts to be further increased based on increases in the Consumer Price Index (Enrolled). 

HB175 by Rep. Garrett: To provide a one-time payment to each qualified taxpayer and provide that it shall not be taxable for Alabama income tax purposes (Enrolled). 

HB217 by Rep. Daniels: To exclude work performed in excess of 40 hours in any week from being included in the calculation of gross income for tax purposes beginning January 1, 2024 and ending December 31, 2026 (Enrolled). 

HB272 by Rep. Shaver: To include additional activity that would constitute a felony for fleeing or attempting to elude a law enforcement officer (Needs House Concurrence). 

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HB289 by Rep. Givan: To provide for circumstances and procedures to disclose or release recordings made by body-worn cameras or dashboard cameras used by law enforcement agencies, and to provide who may request disclosure or release of recordings (Enrolled). 

HB293 by Rep. Brown: To expand tax incentives for business and enterprises who increase their cargo volume through Alabama public ports (Enrolled). 

HB320 by Rep. Bedsole: To appropriate $5 million to the Sheriffs’ Advancement in Education, Technology, and Training Fund, every year for five years beginning October 1, 2023 (Enrolled). 

HB339 by Rep. Pringle: To provide that only during the 2024 election cycle, the runoff primary election would be held six weeks after the primary election, instead of the usual 4 weeks, as the 4 week date would place the runoff primary election 2 days after Easter (Enrolled). 

HB363 by Rep. Collins: To change the appointment process for the Alabama Public Charter School Commission, require commissioners to receive annual training, provide additional guidelines for the authorizing and application review process, provide further for the operational and categorical funding of public charter schools in their first year of operation, clarify that conversion public charter schools receive the full per pupil federal, state, and local revenue intended to support the conversion public charter school and its educational responsibilities to students (Enrolled). 

HB432 by Rep. Smith: To reduce the minimum time period for which Alabama licenses may be issued to a foreign national (Enrolled). 

HB471 by Rep. Garrett: To authorize a Class 8 municipality with a population of 25,000 or more according to the last decennial census and that has a corporate limit lying in two counties to opt out of the county personnel board’s jurisdiction after six months notice, and to opt back in to the jurisdiction of the county personnel board not less than 10 years thereafter at the sole discretion of the municipality (Enrolled). 

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HB473 by Rep. Givens: To provide for the surrender of an infant to an emergency medical services probider or a hospital, to provide for the surrender of an infant in a baby safety device that meets certain requirements, and to provide for an investigation into whether a surrendered infant is a missing child (Enrolled). 

HB479 by Rep. Garrett: To define “food” and begin reducing the state sales and use tax on September 1, 2023, to require certain growth targets in the Education Trust Fund for future sales tax reductions on food, to establish the sales and use tax rate on food for purposes of county and municipal sales and use taxes as the existing general or retail sales and use tax rate, and to authorize a county or municipality to reduce the sales and use tax rate or exempt food from local sales and use taxes (Enrolled). 

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