Legislation to help Jefferson County move forward out of bankruptcy (SB 567 Jabo Waggoner) is scheduled for a vote Tuesday morning in a House committee. Jefferson County’s financial problems make it harder and more expensive for any county in Alabama to borrow money, so all counties would benefit if this one struggling county could get back on its feet. Ask the committee to SUPPORT SB 567 because Jefferson County leaders need this home rule authority to address their problems. House County and Municipal Government Committee: McMillan, chair; Wood, vice chair; Demetrius Newton, ranking minority member, Bandy, Boothe, Bracy, Drake, Farley, Oden, Todd, Dan Williams.
The substitute to the proposals to create a tax court outside the Department of Revenue and alter the Taxpayers Bill of Rights includes one significantly negative change from the county perspective. It shifts the burden of proof from the taxpayer to the county, which will make it much more difficult to collect revenue on sales tax audits. Identical versions of this bill are moving in the House and Senate. Ask your senators to oppose HB 105 unless county concerns are addressed. Ask the House Judiciary Committee to oppose SB 549 unless county concerns are addressed. Committee: DeMarco, chair; Sanderford, vice chair; McClammy, ranking minority member; Beckman, Ball, Farley, Burdine, England, Givan, Greeson, Wayne Johnson, Jones, Poole, John Robinson, Treadaway.
County funding from the Alabama Trust Fund
A dangerous amendment to a positive bill affecting the Alabama Trust Fund (SB 147 Arthur Orr) has not yet been offered, and ACCA is still unsure about what legislative leaders are planning on this issue. As passed by the Senate, the bill would revise the annual payments counties and the state receive from the Alabama Trust Fund without reducing county revenue in any way, and that’s how the bill should stay. Procedurally, this bill could come up at any time without warning. Ask your House members to pass SB 147 WITHOUT AMENDMENT.