AAR Priority Opposed Legislation that Failed to Pass
June 14, 2017
AAR Priority Opposed Legislation that Failed to Pass:
- Defeated legislation that would adversely affect private property rights in Alabama
- SB 266/ HB 369, by Sen. Linda Coleman-Madison and by Rep. Jack Williams, commonly known as “Doughnut Hole Annexation Legislation,” would have authorized an additional annexation method to allow municipalities to annex unincorporated territory that is 15 acres in size or less and that has been enclosed within the corporate limits of municipality for a period of one year or more. Alabama REALTORS® oppose the forced annexation of private property by municipal and regulatory bodies into zoning or municipal boundaries without the property owner’s consent. AAR has flagged and opposed this legislation for several years and its potential negative impact on private property rights in Alabama. SB 266 did not pass.
- Defeated legislative efforts to double the mortgage and deed recording fees and impose fees on the consumer.
- HB 159, sponsored by Rep. Patricia Todd, was once again defeated. This bill gained momentum in the 2015 Legislative Session and did not pass committee in the 2015, 2016 or in the 2017 session. This bill would have raised the mortgage recording fee from 15 cents per $100 of indebtedness to 30 cents per $100 of indebtedness. HB 159 did not pass.
Legislation Opposed or Amended by AAR:
- SB 67, by Sen. Linda Coleman-Madison, would have required unitary combined reporting for business entities. It was intended to capture more revenue from industries that conduct business in Alabama but have locations in other states and countries. It would have required companies and their affiliates to file all of their income with the Alabama Department of Revenue even if the income was not earned within the State of Alabama. The Department would determine the amount of taxes owed. Alabama REALTORS® have opposed this legislation for several years and the negative impact it would have on the real estate industry. SB 67 did not pass.
- HB 219, by Rep. Ken Johnson, would further define transient and clarify the exemption provided to transactions administered by the Residential and Landlord Tenant Act. Alabama REALTORS® flagged this bill last year and the potential negative impact the bill’s vague language could have on property management and landlord-tenant issues. Rep. Johnson and the Department of Revenue worked with Alabama REALTORS® to address these concerns. HB 219 did not pass.
- SB 395, sponsored by Sen. Arthur Orr, would establish procedures by which the state Medicaid Agency could place liens on real and personal property to recover medical assistance payments for services rendered. Medicaid liens already exist in Alabama and federal law, but the process is clouded in ambiguity, affecting and clouding future transfer and title issues on these parcels of property.
AAR opposed the bill over concerns that the lien process would further complicate land transfers and increase liability for real estate professionals and title insurance companies, as well as potentially place even more properties into the inactive and non-tax generating hands of state government. To resolve this issue, AAR worked with the sponsor and stakeholders to add friendly amendments to address many of these concerns as well as allow Medicaid to recover lawful liens for lawfully rendered medical services. SB 395 did not pass.
- HB 194, sponsored by Rep. Matt Fridy, would have brought consistency to the statute of limitations period for inverse condemnation proceedings against municipalities, counties or the state and provide that actions for inverse condemnation must be commenced within two years from the date the property was appropriated for public use. AAR worked with the bill sponsor to offer a friendly amendment that would better explain the intent of the legislation, provide greater notice to property owners and clarify when the taking occurs. HB 194 did not pass.
- SB 353, sponsored by Sen. Vivian Figures, would have authorized a constitutional amendment to levy an additional five mill of state ad valorem tax with net proceeds to be distributed to the State General Fund for Medicaid purposes. SB 353 did not pass.
- SB 91, sponsored by Sen. Arthur Orr, related to consumer protection and would have required some entities to take measures to protect and secure data containing sensitive personally identifying information; would have required the entities to notify the Attorney General of data security breaches; would have provided for enforcement actions by the Attorney General; and would have authorized civil penalties. SB 91 did not pass.