Alabama Legislature

Estes lone abstention on education budget

MONTGOMERY - Marion County Rep. Tracy Estes, R-Winfield, was the lone legislator to abstain from approving the Fiscal Year 2020 Education Trust Fund (ETF) budget.
The Alabama House of Representatives took its final vote on the ETF on Friday, May 31. The budget passed 102-0.
The House District 17 representative told the Journal Record that his abstention was due to him not being provided information regarding Bevill State Community College (BSCC)-Hamilton Campus as requested.

Now well past the initial shock, Estes has gone to work


Hamilton High School’s Natalie Robertson led members of the Alabama House of Representatives in the Pledge of Allegiance to open the session on Thursday, May 7, in Montgomery. Robertson was joined in the chambers by her mother, Denise. The Robertsons were the guest of House District 17 Rep. Tracy Estes, R-Winfield. While in the State Capitol, the Robertsons toured the Alabama State House and visited with various elected officials.

The state’s gasoline tax had just been raised, and Gov. Kay Ivey was being interviewed by a reporter from WSFA-TV when she said something that caught the attention of state Rep. Tracy Estes, R-Winfield. 
“Well, all the freshmen who ran for the House and Senate were indeed briefed on the need for an infrastructure bill well before they were elected, and they were vetted by the House and Senate leadership, and if they were not for increasing the gas tax for infrastructure, they were not encouraged to run,” Ivey said. 

Legislators face backlash, threats after vote for abortion ban

Montgomery - Marion County’s local legislators say they have faced backlash for their decision to vote to ban nearly all abortion in the state
The Alabama State Senate voted 25-6 on Tuesday, May 15, in favor of a near-complete ban on abortions after the state House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved it in April, 74-3.
All three of Marion County’s legislators—Rep. Tracy Estes, R-Winfield, Sen. Garlan Gudger, R-Cullman and Sen. Larry Stutts, R-Tuscumbia—voted in favor of the ban.

Gudger, Stutts vote to ban abortion


Gov. Kay Ivey signs House Bill 314, the Human Life Protection Act, in her office on Wednesday, May 16.

MONTGOMERY - The Alabama State Senate voted 25-6 in favor of a near-complete ban on abortions.
The Senate approved the measurelate Tuesday night, May 15 and Gov. Kay Ivey signed the bill into law the next day, Wednesday, May 16.
The ban bill only allows exceptions to avoid serious health risk to an unborn child’s mother, ectopic pregnancy and if the unborn child has a lethal anomaly.
Both of Marion County’s senators—-District 4 Sen. Garlan Gudger, R-Cullman, and District 6 Sen. Larry Stutts, R-Tuscumbia—voted in favor of the legislation.

 

Senators split vote on medical marijuana

MONTGOMERY - A bill allowing medical marijuana has been passed by the Alabama Senate.
The bill passed quickly on Thursday morning, May 9, less than 24 hours after District 6 Sen. Larry Stutts, R-Tuscumbia, successfully delayed a vote by debating bill sponsor Sen. Tim Melson, R-Florence, until time expired on Wednesday night, May 8.
Stutts said that he and Melson went back and forth for about two hours before the session was dismissed for the day.
When a vote was called immediately the next morning, Stutts said no one had time to do anything.

 

Estes ‘no’ on fantasy sport legislation

Montgomery - A fantasy sports bill has cleared the Alabama House of Representatives.
If passed by the Senate and signed by Gov. Kay Ivey, the bill would make it legal for online fantasy sports leagues, such as FanDuel and DraftKings, to be available for Alabama residents.
 The bill, sponsored by Rep. Kyle South, R-Fayette, passed the House 74-22 and now heads to the state Senate. Marion County’s representative, Tracy Estes, R-Winfield, voted “no” on the issue in what he called a “final-hour” decision due to moral objections.

Stutts ‘no,’ Gudger ‘yes’ on Albritton’s lottery bill

MONTGOMERY -  Alabamians are one step closer to voting on a lottery.
Atmore Sen. Greg Albritton’s paper-only lottery bill passed the Alabama Senate 21-12 on Thursday, April 19, which was the minimum support needed.
Marion County’s two senators were split on the issue. District 4 Sen. Garlan Gudger, R-Cullman, voted “yes,” while District 6 Sen. Larry Stutts, R-Tuscumbia, voted “no.”
The current lottery bill is expected to generate about $167 million annually, according to the Legislative Services Agency.

 

House overwhelming passes abortion ban 74-3

Montgomery - A strict abortion bill expected to challenge the 1973 Roe V. Wade Supreme Court decision has passed the Alabama House of Representatives.
The Alabama House voted 74-3 on Tuesday, April 30, in favor of the bill which would make it a felony for doctors to perform or attempt an abortion unless a mother’s health was at serious stake.
The bill provides no exceptions for pregnancies due to rape or incest.

 

Gudger named to committee overseeing gas tax funds

Montgomery - Sen. Garlan Gudger, R-Cullman, has been selected to serve on a key infrastructure committee that oversees select funds established through the recent Rebuild Alabama 10-cent gas tax increase legislation.
Lt. Gov. Will Ainsworth announced on Wednesday, April 17, that Gudger had selected Gudger to sit on the Alabama Transportation Rehabilitation and Improvement Program (ATRIP-II) Committee, the team tasked with overseeing local road and bridge projects funded by the ATRIP-II fund.

Common Core repeal headed to House

MONTGOMERY - The state Senate has voted 23-7 to repeal Common Core Standards from public school curriculums.
Common Core, also known in Alabama as Alabama College- and Career-Ready Standards, is a set of academic standards for English and math adopted by 41 states.
Both Marion County senators, District 4 Sen. Garlan Gudger, R-Cullman, and District 6 Sen. Larry Stutts, R-Tuscumbia, voted in favor of the repeal, also known as Senate Bill 119.