Goat Hill Report Week Ending April 15, 2016

Road and Bridge Fund Accountability Bill on Governor’s Desk

A proposed increase in gasoline taxes (HB394) hasn’t yet received approval, but the bill that will make sure new revenue coming in for roads and bridges gets spent on the state’s transportation infrastructure is on the Governor’s desk. The House on Tuesday amended and approved SB180 by Senator Gerald Dial, R-Lineville, and the Senate concurred with the changes, sending the bill to the governor. The Alabama Department of Transportation, counties and municipalities would be required to use funds on road and bridge projects and not on salaries or administrative expenses. The Transportation Department also would be required to announce annual projects and post quarterly progress reports on its website. If the Governor signs SB180 into law and the Legislature does not appropriate any new revenue for roads and bridges in the next two years, the accountability bill becomes null and void.

HB394 by Representative Mac McCutcheon is likely to be debated by the House this week. Please call your Representative and ask them to vote yes on the legislation. The House phone number is (334) 242-7600.

Concrete Truck Weight Bill Still Awaiting Final Passage

Legislation to increase allowable concrete truck weights when adding a fourth axle was once again on the special order calendar for Tuesday. SB77 by Gerald Dial was listed as the 13th bill to be addressed by the Senate. Unfortunately things did not go as hoped and the Senate was only able to address 5 bills on the calendar before calling it a day. The Senate met again on Wednesday of last week but only addressed the Education Trust Fund Budget. It is our hope that passage of the ETF Budget will free the Senate up to begin deliberating more non-controversial bills.

Mega Prison Construction Legislation Has Public Hearing in House           

Senate bill 287 by Senator Tripp Pittman was on the agenda of the House Ways and Means General Fund Committee Wednesday. As was the case in the House, representatives from the design and construction committee voiced opposition to the design build component of the bill. The committee did not vote on the bill but will do so this week. It is likely the bill will be approved by the committee and awaits final approval in the House.

The Legislature will reconvene on Tuesday, April 19th for the 23rd legislative day of the session. There are 8 days left in the 2016 session.

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