Tax Debate

Feb 19, 2014

Alabama legislators are discussing whether to remove the state sales tax on groceries again.  The Senate Finance and Taxation-Education Committee held a public hearing Wednesday on a bill that would phase out the state's 4 percent sales tax on groceries.  It would increase the tax on other purchases to 5 percent to make up the lost revenue.  The bill's sponsor, Republican Sen. Gerald Dial of Lineville, says he's optimistic the committee will approve his bill next week and send it to the Senate.  Dial got the same bill approved by the committee last year and then it died in the Senate.  Dial says he and others have been introducing bills to remove the state sales tax on groceries every year since 1992. 

Abortion Hearing

Speakers lined up at Wednesday's public hearing on four abortion bills before an Alabama House committee.  In short, the various bills would prohibit a physician from performing an abortion if a fetal heartbeat is detected; require a woman to wait 48 hours before having the procedure after being given state-mandated information for a doctor; strengthen identity verification of the person giving parental consent for a minor to receive an abortion; and require that a woman be offered perinatal hospice services in the case of a lethal fetal anomaly.  A vote on the measures will not be taken until next week. 

ASU Student Remembered

The Alabama State University family came together earlier Wednesday to remember the life of a fallen Hornet.  Alexandria Ayers, a standout soccer player at the university, was versatile on the field and now continues to score goal in a different way since losing her battle with Lupus on Sunday.  The Ayers family is asking that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Lupus Foundation.