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AL Senate Democrats release legislative agenda

Updated: Feb. 6, 2017 at 5:17 PM CST
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MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Alabama's Democratic state senators have released their 2017 legislative agenda which they are calling, "Restoring Dignity and Prosperity to Working Families."

The Democratic caucus says it will fight to ensure working families have the services they depend on. Those services include; education, healthcare, law enforcement, law enforcement, senior services, human resources and our court system.

Here's the agenda, as released by the caucus:

Revenue Generating Bills

  • Combined Reporting Act: Sponsored by Sen. Linda Coleman (D-Birmingham), the bill would streamline how out-of-state entities, doing business in Alabama, pay taxes. It would generate a low estimate of $30-$50 million and a high estimate of as much as $150 million (according to the Alabama Legislative Fiscal Office) for the state by eliminating this corporate loophole, which has existed for decades.
  • Gaming/Lottery: This legislation would incorporate casinos and lottery funding into both the General Fund and the Education Trust Fund. It is important to include casinos because they create jobs by employing people and creating opportunities for new businesses in the vicinity of each casino. Property Tax Increase:  Sponsored by Sen. Vivian Davis Figures, this legislation would raise property taxes by 5-mills or $15 for every $50,000 of property owned.
  • Property Tax Increase:  Sponsored by Sen. Vivian Davis Figures, this legislation would raise property taxes by 5-mills or $15 for every $50,000 of property owned.

Workers' Rights Legislation

  • “Ban the Box” Bill:  Sponsored by Sen. Quinton T. Ross Jr. (D-Montgomery), this bill would allow job applicants to wait until a job is conditionally offered before disclosing their criminal background.

Voters' Rights Legislation

  • Repeal Photo Voter I.D. Bill:  Sponsored by Sen. Hank Sanders (D-Selma), this bill would repeal Alabama Act Number 2011-673, which requires photo identification in order to vote.
  • Automatic Voter Registration: Sponsored by Sen. Linda Coleman-Madison (D-Birmingham), this bill would allow those with valid driver’s licenses to automatically be registered to vote.
  • Early Voting: Sponsored by Sen. Rodger Smitherman (D-Birmingham), this bill would provide Alabamians the right to vote before Election Day to ensure more people have the opportunity to participate in the electoral process.

Criminal Justice Reform Legislation

  • Racial Profiling Bill: Sponsored by Sen. Rodger Smitherman (D-Birmingham), this bill would define racial profiling while also prohibiting Alabama law enforcement officers from engaging in the practice.

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