After four years of hard work, Governor Kay Ivey on Wednesday signed the Rebuild Alabama Act into law. The Alabama Senate had voted to approve the infrastructure plan on a bipartisan 28-6 vote earlier in the day, and the Alabama House of Representatives passed it with a bipartisan 84-20 vote last week.
Because of Governor Kay Ivey’s unwavering support, bill sponsors Rep. Bill Poole and Sen. Clyde Chambliss, and the bipartisan effort led by Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh, Senate Majority Leader Greg Reed, Senate Minority Leader Bobby Singleton, House Speaker Mac McCutcheon, House Majority Leader Nathaniel Ledbetter, and House Minority Leader Anthony Daniels, the Rebuild Alabama Act is now law.
As Gov. Ivey stood with these legislators in the Old House Chamber, she called it a historic day for the state of Alabama. “What the members of the Alabama Legislature have done today is to improve Alabama’s infrastructure for generations to come,” she said.
Following the bill signing, BCA President and CEO Katie Boyd Britt released a statement saying, “During this Special Session, the Alabama Legislature recognized that passing the Rebuild Alabama Plan was simply the right thing to do for the future of our state. Anyone who drives the roads of Alabama – whether on urban Interstates or rural, two-lane highways – knows the state is currently unable to maintain, improve, and construct a transportation system that adequately meets the needs of its citizens and the industries that are located here. But no longer.”
The 10-cents-per-gallon tax increase will be implemented incrementally over three years, beginning with an increase of six cents on September 1, 2019. Once fully implemented, the total tax increase will cost the average driver $4.58 a month.
The state tax will be adjusted up or down with the National Highway Construction Cost Index and could increase up to a penny every two years. Electric vehicles will now pay an annual registration fee of $200 and plug-in hybrid vehicles will pay $100.
The bill also sets aside up to $11.7 million of the revenue to be used for a bond issue for improvements at the Alabama State Docks. These funds will finance 25 percent of the improvement project at the Port of Mobile and the remaining 75 percent portion will be financed through a federal match.
“This plan provides unprecedented accountability and oversight of revenues for transportation and will ensure all money raised by the plan goes only to transportation projects,” Britt said. “Alabama has been idling while our surrounding states have passed us by and provided funding for their roads and bridges. It’s hard to convince others to invest in Alabama if we aren’t first willing to invest in ourselves. Thanks to this legislation, we are showing the world that Alabama is open for business and will remain competitive in recruiting jobs and industry to our state.”
The quality of our infrastructure system affects everyone, every single day. From our safety to jobs and prosperity, we know that the road to our future must be paved, and now it will be.
Lt. Gov. Ainsworth speaking to the BCA on Tuesday
The next meeting of the BCA’s Governmental Affairs Committee will feature Lt. Governor Will Ainsworth and will be Tuesday, March 19 at 8:30 a.m. in the first floor auditorium of the Business Center of Alabama, 2 North Jackson Street, Montgomery. Please RSVP to Anna Dobbins for this briefing.
Please join us for our 2019 Legislative Reception
The 2019 Legislative Reception will be April 2 at the Renaissance Montgomery Hotel & Spa. RSVP to Anna Dobbins by March 29. Looking forward to seeing you there!
If you have any questions regarding the legislative session, please contact BCA’s Senior Vice President for Governmental Affairs David Cole or BCA’s Vice President for Governmental Affairs Molly Cagle.