Time is running out. Many bills that sought to reduce the tax burden of Alabamians have officially died. But several tax relief bills remained alive as Wednesday’s committee meetings wrapped up.
Alabama’s government had a more than $3 billion combined budget surplus entering 2023. Yet lawmakers still seem reluctant to give “too much” of that surplus back to its rightful owners.
Alabama continues to be in a unique position to provide substantial permanent tax relief to hard-working citizens. To make that a reality, lawmakers must take larger steps to slow the growth of government spending.
It is clear to see why Alabama voters strongly prefer repealing the state’s sales tax on groceries over receiving a one-time rebate check. Will lawmakers listen to their constituents?
There is enough money available to provide Alabamians with historic tax relief, without jeopardizing future state budgets. The question is, are lawmakers willing to do so?
In fiscal year 2022, Alabama’s state government collected over $13 billion in total revenue. It marked the fourth straight year that the state has had a revenue surplus of at least $600 million.
Is it possible that the elected leadership in Montgomery believes that we don’t have enough revenue? Not at all. The numbers don’t lie, and Alabama has more cash on hand than we’ve ever had.
The argument that an economic recession is coming, and the state must be fiscally responsible to weather that storm, does not line up with the actions of the legislature over the last four years.
How Alabama should handle its budget surplus continues to fuel speculation about the possibility of the Alabama Legislature instituting tax relief in the upcoming quadrennium.
Monday, in a statement marking the end of the fiscal year, Gov. Kay Ivey teased a possible tax relief plan.
State Sen. Arthur Orr (R-Decatur), the Senate Education Budget Committee chairman, had previously floated the idea of one-time tax rebates.
Thirty-two states have enacted some form of tax relief for citizens in 2022. Missouri is poised to become the 33rd.