House Democrats lay out 2023 legislative priorities

The state legislative session is getting underway, and lawmakers are are starting to lay out their priorities.
Published: Mar. 6, 2023 at 8:44 PM CST
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Alabama House Democrats have announced their 2023 agenda named “Plan for Prosperity.”

Leader of the party, Rep. Anthony Daniels, D-Madison County, calls this agenda very bold and practical. He says they want their bills to have a direct and meaningful impact on Alabamians.

“From removing the sales tax off groceries to eliminating the tax on overtime to strengthening our schools to criminal justice reform to voting rights,” said Daniels.

Those are the areas Alabama House Democrats are focused on in their “Plan for Prosperity.” Part of their 2023 legislative agenda supports increasing money for public education, specifically for teachers to use at underperforming and poorer schools.

“Making sure that those individuals that are teaching those young people, that they are paid a good salary so that they will want to remain in the classroom,” said Rep. Laura Hall, D-Madison County.

House Democrats want to expand Medicaid for the poorest Alabamians.

“Eligibility for postpartum care, as well as preventive services, such as cancer screening and dietary assessment,” said Rep. Mary Moore, D-Jefferson County.

They also want to add exceptions for rape and incest to the state’s abortion ban, among other priorities.

“We must enact legislation to allow for automatic voter registration at the age of 18, curbside voting, early voting and guaranteed absentee voting,” said Rep. Kentatte Hassell, D-Montgomery County.

“Legislation and policies that allow for compassionate early release when an inmate is terminally ill, elderly and poses no threat to society, and implementing a legitimate process for appeals when those are denied,” said Rep. Phillip Ensler, D-Montgomery County.

But implementing a state lottery is something they may not touch.

“We have a number of legislators in the House that are working on model legislation that we’ll be able to look in that and then meet with the other side and figure out a way, if there’s a compromise, is there a way for us to move forward, and we’ll make a decision at that particular point,” said Daniels

Republicans in both chambers do not have a list of priorities but are focused on economic development.

Lawmakers will gavel in at noon Tuesday followed by Gov. Kay Ivey’s State of the State address later that evening.

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