Friday, August 14, 2009

Riley, French, Waggoner hold press conference

Governor Riley held a press conference with Senators Waggoner and French. During the discussion Senator French said he is putting the Jefferson County Commission on notice. French said that if the county commission does not get their spending under control, they should not come back to the legislature to fix their problems again.

Governor Riley stated that he thinks the legislation passed today is great. He also noted that he believes the two bills provide the right amount of accountability for the county commission. Riley said that Jefferson County is now in control of their fate. Riley would not say when he expected to sign the bills, but it is anticipated to be sometime within a week.

Legislature passes JeffCo bills

The House and Senate convened this morning to pass legislation relating to Jefferson County which was the foundation of the first special session of 2009. HB13, which would enact a .0045 percent occupational tax on the net income of all business activity conducted in Jefferson County, passed the Senate with a vote of 12 to 9. Immediately following, the senate debated HB16, the Jefferson County Accountability Act. HB16 was substituted by Senator Smitherman in committee yesterday. The new bill removes the requirement for the Jefferson County Commission to hire a comptroller. With a much easier vote of 30 to 0, HB16 as substituted passed the Senate.

HB13 traveled directly to Governor Riley from the senate, but HB16 went back to the House for concurrence. With a vote of 36 to 2 the House voted to concur with the Senate on the Jefferson County Accountability Act sending the bill to Governor Riley’s desk.

HB16 with substitute passes the Senate

HB16 passed the Senate this morning with a vote of 30 to 0. HB16 received a substitute in committee that removes the requirement for the Jefferson County Commission to hire a comptroller. The substitute was offered by Senator Smitherman and adopted by the full body with a vote of 18 to 11.

HB16 will now go to the House for concurrence on the bill.

HB13-Jeffco occupational tax passes the Senate

The senate convened this morning at 9:00 am. First on the special order calendar was HB13, relating to the occupational tax for Jefferson County. After debating the bill for forty-five minutes the senate passed the bill with a vote of 12 to 9. Now HB13 will head to Governor Riley’s office where he is expected to sign it into law.

Next on the special order calendar is HB16, the Jefferson County accountability act.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Senate LL2 committee report

The Senate LL2 committee met this afternoon at 4:00 pm. During the thirty minute meeting the committee gave favorable reports to HB13, HB16 with substitute, and HB4. HB16’s substitute offered by Senator Smitherman would remove the office of comptroller from the Jefferson County Accountability Act. Senator Beason offered an amendment to HB13 which did not receive a favorable report from the committee.

Pot in the Alabama state house

Watch WSFA's coverage of the House Legislative Council meeting where legislators met with House Clerk, Greg Pappas. Pappas was questioned at the meeting about an incident involving a former state house employee accused of bringing marijuana to work.

Smitherman: I probably will not make changes to tax bill

Watch Senate President Pro Tempore Rodger Smitherman's interview this morning on WBRC with Rick Journey.