NWRA State Update: Alabama Provides Update on the Final Days of the 2021 Legislative Session

NWRA State Update: Alabama Provides Update on the Final Days of the 2021 Legislative Session

On Monday, May 17, the Alabama Legislature convened for the 30th and final day of the 2021 legislative session. The House passed and the Senate concurred in the much-awaited general fund budget. The $2.4 billion budget is a 3.6 percent increase and includes a 2 percent pay raise for state employees. The budget has been forwarded to the governor for her consideration. The House then moved to the first of two special order calendars for that day. Both calendars contained all Senate bills, and despite a lot of debate and procedural delays, many bills managed to receive final passage, while several other controversial bills perished. The House produced a third special order calendar to adopt late in the evening, but time ran out on this year’s legislative session before it could be voted on.

House Bill 232 sponsored by Rep. Matt Simpson (R-1) was delivered to the governor on May 17. This bill would relate to any Class 2 municipality and would require all courts in this state to take judicial notice of all municipal ordinances of the municipality.

Senate Bill 59 sponsored by Sen. Tim Melson (R-1) passed on May 17 with a vote of 30 to 0 and was delivered to the governor’s desk. This bill would allow a municipality to authorize a law enforcement officer of the municipality to issue a summons and complaint in lieu of custodial arrest for certain criminal offenses.

The Senate, on the final legislative day, also adopted two special order calendars that contained all House bills. Before completing its first calendar, the Senate adopted a second special order calendar that contained several controversial bills, much to the dismay of several Senators, leading to prolonged filibustering and significantly slowing the Senate down.

The Senate did, however, manage to pass many bills in the process during the day. Like the House, the Senate also had a third special order calendar but ran out of time before it could be adopted.