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Legislative Summary

Fine Geddie & Associates provides a newsletter of candid assessment and background information on bills currently in the Alabama Legislature. The newsletter is published during the Regular Session. Special Reports are published during elections and special sessions.

2021 Special Report | May 18, 2021
Medical Marijuana Receives Governor's Signature, Rural Economic Development Bill Wins Final Passage and Budgets Finalized on Session's Last Day

On the final day of the 2021 regular session, the biggest news came in the early afternoon when Gov. Kay Ivey announced that she had signed medical marijuana legislation into law. After thorough and extended consideration in the legislature, SB46 had been pending with the governor since May 6. Read more >

WEEK FOURTEEN: Bill Tracking Report

2021 Special Report | May 7, 2021

Medical Marijuana Wins Final Passage, but Gambling Stalls in Week of Long Days, Late Nights

With time running out on the 2021 regular session, all eyes were on the House of Representatives this week. After a day and a half of floor debate and multiple amendments, a bipartisan House voted 68-34 to pass SB46 authorizing medical marijuana in the state. Read more >

WEEK THIRTEEN: Bill Tracking Report

2021 Special Report | April 30, 2021
State Budgets Dominate as Session Speeds Towards Conclusion

As the regular session nears the home stretch, the House Ways and Means Committee on Education approved a substitute version of the Education Trust Fund Budget Thursday. The committee shaved about $3 million off the Senate-passed version, for a grand total of $7.670 billion for the 2021-2022 fiscal year. Representing a $452 million increase over the current year, it would be the largest education budget in Alabama history. Read more >

WEEK TWELVE: Bill Tracking Report

2021 Special Report | April 30, 2021
Education budget advances in the House; Senate focuses on election reform

The state's two major operating budgets made major progress this week, starting with the House's passage Tuesday of a $7.67 billion Education Trust Fund Budget for the upcoming year, representing a $455 million increase above the current year. Read more >

WEEK ELEVEN: Bill Tracking Report

2021 Special Report | April 16, 2021
More Progress for Medical Marijuana in House, Senates Revives Hope for Lottery & Casinos

The Alabama Legislature recorded another productive week, highlighted by advancement for medical marijuana and gambling. Generally, senators worked together smoothly, although friction slowed work on the House floor occasionally. Read more >

WEEK TEN: Bill Tracking Report

2021 Special Report | April 9, 2021
Progress on Medical Marijuana, Pharmacy Benefit Management and State Lottery, Open Records Discussions are Ongoing

Both chambers tackled high-profile issues in an eventful week as work began to accelerate in the session's waning days. Proposals advanced regarding medical marijuana, pharmacy benefit management and a state lottery, and work continued on a controversial rewrite of the state's open records law. Read more >

WEEK NINE: Bill Tracking Report

2021 Special Report | April 2, 2021
Open Records Reform Advances Medical Marijuana Delayed Another Week

Following a spring break recess, the House of Representatives resumed brisk productivity this week, but action on the Senate floor slowed, with filibustering and frequent need to cut off debate and force votes. Read more >

WEEK EIGHT: Bill Tracking Report

2021 Special Report | March 23, 2021
Supplemental Emergency Proclamation reflecting update school recommendations from the CDC

Monday, March 22, Governor Kay Ivey issued her 25th Supplemental Emergency Proclamation to further amend the recently extended Safer at Home Order. Monday’s order amends paragraph 14 (“Educational institutions”) to reflect updated recommendations from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) concerning social distancing in elementary, middle and high schools. Read more >

2021 Regular Session | March 19, 2021
Senate Approves Education Budget Ahead of Recess

With the Senate’s passage of a $7.673 billion education budget, lawmakers hit another milestone in this fast-paced session before departing Montgomery for their one- week spring break. Representing a $455 million increase over the current fiscal year, the Senate-passed budget is the largest education budget in Alabama history. Read more >


WEEK SEVEN: Bill Tracking Report

2021 Regular Session | March 12, 2021
House Approves General Fund Budget, Pharmacy Benefits Manager Bill Hits Opposition in Senate Committee, Omnibus Public Records Bill Held for Further Review
Legislators continued their steady progress this week, highlighted by the House's passage of the $2.474 billion General Fund budget on Tuesday, with the figure representing a slight increase over prior years appropriations. Read more >

WEEK SIX: Bill Tracking Report

2021 Regular Session | March 5, 2021
Broadband Expansion in Focus During Another Productive Week
This week the Senate passed a sweeping, multi-pronged proposal from Sen. Del Marsh (R-Anniston) to expand broadband access in Alabama. As it passed the Senate, SB215 creates a new state agency to oversee expansion and award grants, an advisory board to guide the effort, a research alliance of higher education and a finance corporation, authorized to issue up to $250 million in bonds annually. Read more >

WEEK FIVE: Bill Tracking Report

2021 Regular Session | February 26, 2021
Medical Marijuana Passes Senate
Legislators made steady, business-like progress throughout the week, and while medical marijuana and looming gambling issues have been reliable--and disruptive--hot-button issues in the years past, they did not disrupt the flow of work. Read more >

WEEK FOUR: Bill Tracking Report

2021 Regular Session | February 19, 2021
Lawmakers to Resume Aggressive Workload
The Alabama Legislature began the annual session at a fast clip, and legislators are expected to maintain their momentum when they return to Montgomery on Tuesday, February 23, after a one-week recess. The full Senate is expected to continue debating the comprehensive gambling proposal from Sen. Del March (R-Anniston). Read more >

2021 Regular Session | February 12, 2021
Fast-Paced Productivity Again in Week Two
Governor Kay Ivey signed three major legislative measures into law this week. The bills below were identified as the key legislative priorities for the session and the swift approval of each reflects the highly productive posture in which the Alabama Legislature has operated the past two weeks. Read more >

WEEK TWO: Bill Tracking Report

2021 Regular Session | February 5, 2021
Productive Week Despite Unusual Circumstances
The Alabama Legislature got down to business immediately in the 2021 session's first week; both chambers moved major legislation, seemingly unhindered by social distancing and other virus-related precautions. Gov. Kay Ivey matched their pace, delivering her annual State of the State virtually on Tuesday and submitting her budget recommendations the next day. Read more >

WEEK ONE: Bill Tracking Report


2021 Regular Session | February 2, 2021
Outlook for Opening Day
The Alabama Legislature convened in Regular Session at noon Tuesday, February 2, with the public excluded from both legislative chambers. Proceedings will be viewable by livestream. Likewise, committee hearings may be observed via livestream through the Legislature’s website. Read more >

2021 Regular Session Preview | January 28, 2021
Alabama Legislature to Convene on February 2
The 2021 Regular Legislative Session will commence at noon Tuesday, February 2, through logistics and procedures have been altered substantially due to COVID-19. It remains to be seen if lawmakers will begin the 15-week session with two long work weeks followed by a short COVID-19 recess as has been discussed. Read more >