A bill that would allow North Alabama counties to keep all the money paid by TVA in lieu of taxes recently won final passage in the Alabama Legislature. As you may recall, the Governor let it die without his signature during the last session. There wasn’t time then for a veto to be overridden. Rep. Jeff McLaughlin’s bill would repeal a 1978 law that allows 5% of the money paid by the Tennessee Valley Authority to be distributed to “dry” counties and cities that are not served by TVA and which ban the sale of alcoholic beverages.
During the Senate debate, Senator Bobby Denton, D-Muscle Shoals, explained that in 1930, 100% of TVA funds went to the state’s General Fund budget. A legislative deal brokered in 1978 by Governor George C. Wallace began a schedule that slowly transferred most of the funds back to TVA counties. Senator Lowell Barron, D-Fyffe, had this to say about the issue:
Fifty years ago, 100% of all of that money generated in the northern 16 counties came to the General Fund, which was very unfair. The local cities and the local counties got not one penny of property tax money from the TVA.
It will be interesting to see if Governor Riley does veto this bill which definitely helps North Alabama, and if he does, what happens on the override votes in the House and Senate. I really hope that there will be no veto this time.
Source: Huntsville Times
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