Bill Status and Tracking

Below you will find a report that outlines some of the highlights of the week.  Additionally, at the end of this report, you will find a list of bills that we are tracking for you.  

Alabama Legislative Report

February 12, 2021

Economic Development Incentives

Governor Ivey signed legislation this morning that would extend two important economic development programs to attract business to the state.  HB192, sponsored by Representative Bill Poole and Senator Greg Reed, would renew the Alabama Jobs Act and extend the incentives through July 31, 2023.  The bill would provide additional incentives for critical supply chain companies and underrepresented businesses.  The Jobs Act cap will increase from $300 to $325 million in 2021 and $350 million in 2022.  In addition, the bill will renew the recently expired Growing Alabama Act, which allows tax credits for contributions to economic development organizations.  The cap for the Growing Alabama program will expand from $10 million to $20 million per year.

COVID Liability Protections

Governor Ivey signed legislation this morning that would provide civil liability protection for businesses and other entities in COVID-related lawsuits, provided the entity took proper COVID precautions.  Senator Arthur Orr’s bill, SB30, would provide a safe harbor for many organizations unless reckless or intentional misconduct can be proven.  The bill attempts to strike a balance between businesses impacted by the economic effects of the pandemic and front-line workers at risk of contracting the virus on the job.

COVID/Stimulus Tax Reform

Governor Ivey signed legislation this morning that would exempt federal COVID stimulus aid, including direct payments to individuals and loan forgiveness benefits to businesses under the Paycheck Protection Program, from state income taxes.  HB170, sponsored by Representative Danny Garrett and Senator Dan Roberts, would not only apply to federal relief disbursed in 2020 but was amended to also include any federal relief approved in 2021.  Additionally, HB170 makes a number of changes to the corporate tax income structure in the state, including the following:

  • For most industries, converts our apportionment formula to a single sales factor from the current double-weighted sales factor, effective January 1, 2021.
  • Repeals the throwback rule not only for sales from in-state facilities to private sector customers in other states, but also sales to the U.S. Government.
  • De-couples (retroactively) from the TCJA’s Section 118 amendment taxing new or expanding industries on contributions made by the State or a local government in aid of construction of their plant, access roads, etc.
  • De-couples (retroactively) from the TCJA’s Section 951A “GILTI” rules with respect to income from non-U.S. intangibles such as royalties.
  • Implements a taxpayer favorable approach to the Alabama equivalent of the IRC Section 163(j) business interest limitation. The amendment allows members of a Federal consolidated group subject to Alabama income tax (even if they don’t file an Alabama consolidated return) to offset one member’s business interest expense against another member’s business interest income to achieve a net amount that’s then tested under Section 163(j)(1)(A). The bill does not de-couple from Section 163(j) as some other states have done.
  • Establishes a new alternate tax regime applicable only to electing partnerships/LLCs treated as pass-through entities and to S corporations.

5G Infrastructure

The House unanimously passed legislation Thursday that would create a statewide permitting standard for 5G infrastructure deployment.  Senator Arthur Orr’s “small cell” bill, SB76, would create a uniform permitting system throughout the state and a timeline for approval to expedite the rollout of 5G-related technology (small cells).  SB76 was sent to Governor Ivey’s desk Thursday.

Rental Assistance

The Senate unanimously passed legislation Thursday that would appropriate an estimated $263 million in federal FY21 omnibus funding to administer the Emergency Rental Assistance Program.  The program is designed to assist eligible households unable to pay rent and utilities due to the pandemic.  Representative Steve Clouse’s bill, HB231, was passed by the House last week and was sent to Governor Ivey’s desk Thursday.

Gambling

Senator Del Marsh introduced legislation Thursday that would establish a statewide education lottery and five casinos with table games, sports betting and slot machines.  The bill creates a lottery corporation and gaming commission. As drafted, state revenue generated by the gaming taxes and fees would be distributed primarily to the General Fund for the expansion of broadband and the provision of rural health/mental health services. The Senate began debate on SB214 but is not expected to vote until after next week’s break, which will allow time for Marsh to tailor the bill.  A constitutional amendment approved by Alabama voters would be required to make the change.

Broadband

Senator Marsh also introduced legislation Thursday intended to facilitate the expansion of broadband statewide.  SB215 would create a new authority to oversee and implement the expansion of high-speed internet throughout the state. The authority would be responsible for administering state grant programs and would also have the authority to issue bonds of up to $250 million to finance eligible projects.  Much like the gambling bill, SB215 was carried over until after next week’s break.


HB 0398 | Howard Sanderford

State General Fund, requirement for annual transfers from State Licensing Board for General Contractors, the Alabama Onsite Wastewater Board, the Alabama State Board of Respiratory Therapy, and the Alabama Board of Electrical Contractors removed, Secs. 34-8-25, 34-21A-6, 34-27B-6, 34-36-17 am'd. 

Feb 10, 2021 - Read for the first time and referred to the House of Representatives committee on Ways and Means General Fund 

House Committee:  Ways and Means General Fund 

Senate Committee:     

 

SB 0224 | Donnie Chesteen

Electrical Contractors, Alabama Board of, board membership revised, board authorized to subpoena witnesses and investigate complaints, expiration of licenses, local business licenses texting deleted, Secs. 34-36-3, 34-36-4, 34-36-6, 34-36-7, 34-36-8, 34-36-9, 34-36-13, 34-36-16 am'd. 

Feb 10, 2021 - Read for the first time and referred to the Senate committee on Governmental Affairs 

House Committee:   

Senate Committee:  Governmental Affairs   

 

SB 0220 | Clay Scofield

Highway, roads, and bridges, contracts or subcontracts for public works, provisions requiring a party to indemnify another party for damages caused by the other party prohibited 

Feb 10, 2021 - Read for the first time and referred to the Senate committee on Transportation and Energy 

House Committee:   

Senate Committee:  Transportation and Energy   

 

HB 0384 | Jeff Sorrells

Electrical Contractors, Alabama Board of, board membership revised, board authorized to subpoena witnesses and investigate complaints, expiration of licenses, local business licenses texting deleted, Secs. 34-36-3, 34-36-4, 34-36-6, 34-36-7, 34-36-8, 34-36-9, 34-36-13, 34-36-16 am'd. 

Feb 09, 2021 - Read for the first time and referred to the House of Representatives committee on Boards, Agencies and Commissions 

House Committee:  Boards, Agencies and Commissions 

Senate Committee:     

 

SB 0208 | Andrew Jones

Plumbers and Gas Fitters Examining Board, transferred to new chapter, definitions revised, registration of a principal master for one entity at a time, continuing education and emergency certificates authorized, Secs. 34-37A-1 to 34-37A-19, inclusive, added; Secs. 34-37-1 to 34-37-18, inclusive, repealed 

Feb 09, 2021 - Read for the first time and referred to the Senate committee on Governmental Affairs 

House Committee:   

Senate Committee:  Governmental Affairs   

 

SB 0194 | Donnie Chesteen

Education Dept., state property, Dept. of Edu., has authority to manange the construction and renovation of property that is part of a state educational institution, Secs. 41-4-353, 41-4-400 am'd. 

Feb 04, 2021 - Read for the first time and referred to the Senate committee on Governmental Affairs 

House Committee:   

Senate Committee:  Governmental Affairs   

 

HB 0281 | Victor Gaston

Income tax, historic structures, qualified rehabilitation, tax credits extended to 2029, admin. by Historical Commission, Secs. 40-9F-33, 40-9F-36 am'd. 

Feb 02, 2021 - Read for the first time and referred to the House of Representatives committee on Ways and Means Education 

House Committee:  Ways and Means Education 

Senate Committee:     

 

HB 0220 | Nathaniel Ledbetter

Education Dept., state property, Dept. of Edu., has authority to manange the construction and renovation of property that is part of a state educational institution, Secs. 41-4-353, 41-4-400 am'd. 

Feb 10, 2021 - Pending third reading on day 6 Favorable from Education Policy 

House Committee:  State Government, Ways and Means Education 

Senate Committee:     

 

HB 0192 | William Poole

Economic development, job credit and investment credit for approved projects sunset date extended, incentives for attraction of new and expanding business including rural areas, incentives for high-tech companies Growing Alabama Act, Income tax, tax credits for use of state's port facilities, authorized, Sec. 40-18-376.4 added; Secs. 40-18-370, 40-18-375, 40-18-376.3, 40-18-382, 40-18-383, 40-18-400, 40-18-403 am'd. 

Feb 11, 2021 - Delivered to Governor at 11:42 a.m. on February 11, 2021. 

House Committee:  Ways and Means Education 

Senate Committee:     

 

HB 0121 | Reed Ingram

Lead reduction, revise authority of Dept of Public Health to administer program, Secs. 22-37A-2 to 22-37A-7, inclusive, am'd. 

Feb 02, 2021 - Read for the first time and referred to the House of Representatives committee on Health 

House Committee:  Health 

Senate Committee:     

 

SB 0109 | Garlan Gudger

Competitive bidding, awarding authority allowed to negotiate lowest bidder when all bids exceed available funding, Sec. 39-2-6 am'd. 

Feb 11, 2021 - Read for the first time and referred to the House of Representatives committee on State Government 

House Committee:  State Government 

Senate Committee:  Governmental Affairs   

 

SB 0060 | Will Barfoot

Public contracts, contracts for heating and air conditioning systems, exemption further provided, Sec. 39-2-2 am'd. 

Feb 09, 2021 - Engrossed 

House Committee:   

Senate Committee:  Governmental Affairs   

 

SB 0034 | Will Barfoot

Public contracts, contracts for heating and air conditioning systems, exemption further provided, Sec. 39-2-2 am'd. 

Feb 02, 2021 - Read for the first time and referred to the Senate committee on Governmental Affairs 

House Committee:   

Senate Committee:  Governmental Affairs   

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