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January 2016 Group Watch: News & Views from the State House

The new year is here, and the next session will be starting soon, but in the meantime, here are a few of the latest headlines topping the list in Alabama politics news.

Lottery Coming to Alabama?
Republican legislators pre-filed a bill last week that would put the question of a state lottery in the hands of voters. The bill, a constitutional amendment, would make the establishment of a state lottery a yes or no question. The proposal does not lay out mechanics for the operation of a program, how much the state would receive or the spending of the money. If passed by the legislature and approved by the voters, lawmakers could establish a lottery in the 2017 Regular Session. The legislation is permissive, but not mandatory.
Business & Veterans Groups Endorse Shelby
The Business Council of Alabama announced that it has endorsed U.S. Senator Richard Shelby ® for re-election. This endorsement comes just days after a prominent North Alabama veterans group voiced its support for Senator Shelby. Senator Shelby is regarded as the most respected and influential member of the U.S. Senate. The group of Huntsville area veterans said that Senator Shelby has always worked to support those who currently serve in our Armed Forces as well as the veterans who have sacrificed so much to keep us safe. Business leaders tout Senator Shelby’s understanding of and commitment to business. They point specifically to progress in manufacturing, technology and medical science.

Alabama Gas Prices Among Lowest in Nation
The national average for gasoline is at its lowest point in at least seven years. A recent report indicates prices may drop to as low as $1 per gallon. According to AAA, the average price of gasoline in Alabama is the sixth lowest in the country. This information is very significant in Alabama since some key legislator want pas a gasoline tax to allow the state to access more federal dollars for road and bridge repairs. Legislative proposals will likely be tied to pricing. Governor Bentley has said that he will sign the gas tax should the legislature send it to him.

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