With abortion virtually outlawed in Alabama, lawmakers are looking at ways to provide adoption and pregnancy resources for mothers in need.
Sponsored by State Rep. Jamie Kiel (R-Russellville), House Bill 208 (HB208), also called the Pregnancy Resource Act, seeks to offer state tax credits to individuals and businesses that make voluntary cash contributions to an eligible pregnancy center or residential maternity facility.
The Act has already received endorsement from the Alabama Policy Institute.
Pregnancy centers and maternal facilities offer services to pregnant mothers who lack traditional resources. The centers typically serve low-income mothers or those without an adequate support system. The centers offer financial assistance, operate as a clinic, offer birth education, perform ultrasounds and more.
The centers are not-for-profit operations that function off donations from individuals and businesses.
HB208 would require eligible organizations to provide the Department of Revenue with a written statement, under penalty of perjury, that it meets specific criteria.
The organization must be a 501c3 non-profit and not provide abortions or promote, partner or support organizations that encourage abortion or abortifacients.
Increasing pregnancy and adoption resources has been a priority for Alabama Lawmakers since Alabama's abortion ban was enacted in 2022.
Alabama's Human Life Protection Act (HLPA) was signed into law in 2019, but it only went into effect in June 2022 after the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) struck down Roe v. Wade.
The law makes it a felony to perform an abortion except for clearly defined risks to the mother's health.
While lawmakers admit that the HLPA was meant as a challenge to Roe, since the HLPA became the law of the land, lawmakers have expressed a desire to increase assistance to pregnant women.
State Rep. Ginny Shaver (R-Leesburg) recently passed a bill that overhauls the adoption process in the state, designed to make the process more streamlined and affordable, and more adoption-related bills are expected this session.
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