News & Updates

February 21, 2014

Week 6- Legislative Update

Some important Committee activity this week included a Public Hearing on a bill to phase out the state sales tax on groceries. The Senate Finance and Taxation-Education Committee held a public hearing, but did not vote. 

The House Health Committee also held a public hearing on a bill that would ban abortion after the fetal heartbeat is detected, but did not vote.

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved a bill to keep the manufacturers and suppliers of drugs for lethal injections private. Goes to Senate.

And the House Ways and Means Committee approved a $1.8 billion General Fund for the 2015 fiscal year. Goes to House.

House of Representatives:

Passed a variety of Alabama sunset bills, which would allow the following departments and agencies to exist and function, including: the Department of Insurance, the Public Service Commission, State Board of Podiatry, the Board of Registration for Foresters, the State Oil and Gas Board and the Alabama State Board of Prosthetists and Orthotists, the State Radiation Control Agency, the Board of Home Medical Equipment Service Providers, the Alabama Manufactured Housing Commission, the Sickle Cell Oversight and Regulatory Commission, the Alabama Athletic Commission, the Alabama Construction Recruitment Institute and the Alabama Surface Mining Commission.

Passed HB 136 which would create a Local Government Health Insurance Board to administer the local government health insurance program.

Passed HB 373 which would subject prepaid wireless services to sales and use tax.

Passed HB 87 which would strengthen consumer protection over preneed contracts and cemetery endowment care funds.

Passed HB 78 which would allow municipal planning commissions to adopt minor subdivision approvals without notice or a public hearing under certain conditions.

Passed HB 45 which is a constitutional amendment that would authorize the display of the Ten Commandments on public property.

Passed HB 319 which would remove the requirement that physicians registering under the Alabama Pain Management Act get criminal background checks.

Passed HB 348 which would allow 18-year-olds to give consent to participate in certain research conducted by a college or university.

Senate:

Debated—but ultimately carried over—HB 105, which would create a new Alabama Tax Appeals Commission.

Passed SB 318 authorizing the Alabama Mental Health Finance Authority to state entities that can sell and lease their property.

Passed HB 155 which would eliminate a complaint process to the Public Service Commission for telecommunications.

Passed SB 319 regarding ignition interlock devices.

Passed SB 85 extending scholarship benefits to veterans who served during peacetime.

Passed SB 79 which would award state contracts of $100,000 or less to state businesses that come within five percent of the lowest reasonable bid.

Passed SB 164 lowering the penalty for falsification or fraud on the application for an Alabama voter ID card from a Class C Felony to a Class A Misdemeanor.

There are 14 legislative meeting days left in the 2014 Session.

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