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Thursday, April 30, 2009

House will try to remove grocery tax again

House Speaker Seth Hammett, D-Andalusia, said Thursday that the House plans to make one more run at trying to remove the sales tax from groceries. The bill will be brought up again on Tuesday after Democrats failed on three previous occasions to have enough votes to get the measure onto the floor for debate.
The bill would remove the state's 4 percent sales tax on food by replacing the revenue with a measure that would not allow wealthier Alabamians to deduct the federal income tax they pay from their state income tax.
Removing the sales tax from groceries is the top priority for House Democrats.
Hammett said it is unprecedented for a bill to be brought up four times and for the majority to fail to be able to get anybody in the minority to vote for it.
Not one Republican has voted for bringing the bill up for debate during the previous three attempts.
Hammett said the leadership has told him none of the Republicans plan to vote for the bill.
Alabama Arise is pointing to a recent poll by the Capital Survey Research Center, the polling arm of the Alabama Education Association, that shows about two-thirds of people in the state support the plan.
Republicans have said they are not opposed to removing the sales tax from groceries, but said the change would equate to a tax increase on their constituents.
Single filers with an income of $75,000 would see an increase and joint filers who earn more than $125,000 would see an increase in their taxes.

-- posted by Sebastian Kitchen


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Location: Montgomery, AL, United States

South Union Street is the blog of Montgomery Advertiser political reporters Markeshia Ricks and Sebastian Kitchen. Always check here for the latest on the Legislature, elections and other activities and players in Alabama.

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