Montgomery – Alabama Speaker of the House Mike Hubbard (R – Auburn) was joined by House Majority Leader Micky Hammon (R – Decatur), Agenda Platform Committee Chair Representative Randy Davis (R – Daphne) and several other House Republican Caucus Members on Thursday as they unveiled the bills and initiatives included in the Republican Caucus’ 2014 “Commonsense Conservative” legislative agenda.
“Our agenda earned its label because each of these bills are commonsense measures that represent the conservative beliefs and principles that Republicans embrace,” Hubbard said. “They continue the record of fundamental reforms, constitutional rights protections, and pro-business, job growth initiatives that Republicans have passed since taking control of the Legislature almost four years ago.”
Hammon said that as the agenda took shape, it became apparent that Republican lawmakers had taxpayer relief foremost in their minds.
“As opposed to the tax and spend Democrats in D.C., a review of our ‘Commonsense Conservative’ agenda shows that House Republicans want to make 2014 the ‘Year of Taxpayer Relief’ in Alabama,” Hammon said. “It also reflects our deep commitment to social issues like protecting unborn life and preserving personal religious and moral freedoms from federal mandates.”
Davis, who chaired the House Republican Caucus Platform Committee that was responsible for crafting the agenda, said every GOP House member was invited to submit bills for consideration in order to gather the broadest selection from which to choose.
“When we brought the agenda before the full Caucus, it was approved unanimously because it truly reflects the bedrock conservative beliefs of most Republicans,” Davis said. “I am confident that the bills in our ‘Commonsense Conservative’ agenda will secure quick approval when brought up for consideration on the House floor.”
This year, business owners will receive immediate tax relief and will find their filing process made dramatically easier through the agenda’s Small Business Tax Relief Act and the Business Tax Streamlining Act.
Working with Governor Bentley and the Department of Revenue, the agenda’s Tax Elimination Act, will dissolve taxes that cost more to collect than they take in. The Alabama Taxpayer Audit Protection Act will ensure that the Internal Revenue Service’s targeting of individuals for audit based upon political beliefs cannot occur on the state government level, and the Taxpayer Bill of Rights will make the tax appeals process more balanced and fair for business and individuals alike.
The Revolving Door Act being proposed by Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh (R – Anniston) has garnered widespread support from House Republicans and will prevent lawmakers from lobbying either legislative body for at least two years after leaving office.
The agenda also includes the Healthcare Right of Conscience Act, which prevents healthcare professionals from being forced to provide services that violate their conscience and moral beliefs, and an Adoption Tax Credit that will help provide more Alabama children with secure and loving homes.
State employees, officials, and education workers will receive clear cut and codified immunity from being sued while acting in their official capacity with passage of the Statutory Immunity for Teachers and State Employees Act.
The leaders also said that economic development and job creation remains the major focus for the Republican Caucus, and the details surrounding a major Workforce Development Initiative also included in the agenda will be announced as the session’s January 14, 2014 start date draws near.
Read more about the Commonsense Conservative Agenda here:Commonsense Conservative Agenda Overview (1094)