CNN Week 10 – First-Time Homebuyer Renewal Bill Passes!
April 5, 2022
The Alabama Legislature’s tenth week in regular session is complete, with only four legislative days remaining. Legislative leadership has strongly hinted that this week will be the last week, using four legislative days and ending the session on Friday. That being said, one budget has not passed and the other has not been signed by the Governor, so ending next week is still a possibility.
First-Time Homebuyer Savings Account Renewal Bill Passes
HB 171, the bill renewing the First-Time Homebuyer Savings Account Program, received final passage from the Legislature last week. With a vote of 25-0, senators moved the bill forward, sending it to the Governor for her signature. Thank you to sponsors Representative Kyle South (R-Fayette) and Senator Sam Givhan (R-Huntsville) for carrying the bill through both chambers, as well as Sen. Jabo Waggoner (R-Vestavia Hills), chairman of the Senate Rules committee, for placing the bill on the Senate calendar. Also, we could not have done this without our members who responded to the call for action. Alabama REALTORS® sincerely appreciates your willing and active participation!
Both chambers approved the General Fund budget last week. That bill is now in the hands of the Governor who can sign it, allow it to become law without her signature, or veto in whole or in part. Alabama law allows governors to partially veto only budget bills, called a line-item veto. While the Governor has not indicated what she will do, a veto would result in the bill going back to the Legislature.
The Senate approved the Education Trust Fund (ETF) budget 32-0, adding tiered pay raises for teachers based on years on the job. The pay raises are intended to keep teachers in Alabama and at their jobs longer, as Alabama competes with surrounding states for the best and the brightest. The $8.1 billion ETF budget now goes back to the House tomorrow.
A few other bills of note have updates. A bill to reduce the minimum business privilege tax charged by the state to LLCs and other companies passed both chambers last week. HB 391, sponsored by Rep. Steve Clouse (R-Ozark), reduces the business privilege tax for relevant companies that pay the minimum owed (i.e., make $80,000 or less) to $50 for 2023 and $0 after 2023. You can read more about this bill in last week’s CNN here.
A bill to increase the scope and jurisdiction of the Electrical Contractor’s Board is unlikely to move this session. Alabama REALTORS® has worked with the Board and interested parties to protect from Board licensure property managers and owners who hire a handyman or themselves to do routine electrical work, like installing fixtures or changing out light switches or plugs. Work on the bill will continue as needed to protect our members and private property owners.
The Senate and House convened today at 2:30 and 1:30 respectively. As noted above, the Legislature will likely meet today, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday for a climactic end to a grinding session. Stay tuned next week for what may be the final CNN of the session.