MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Alabama joined over 20 other states in making it legal to carry a weapon without a background check or permit on Jan. 1, 2023. Passing the Alabama House or Representatives and Senate in February, House Bill 272, commonly known as the “Constitutional Carry Bill,” was signed into law immediately by Governor Kay Ivey who said at the time, “Unlike states who are doing everything in their power to make it harder for law abiding citizens, Alabama is reaffirming our commitment to defending our Second Amendment rights. I have always stood up for the rights of law-abiding gun owners, and I am proud to do that again today.”
The law held onto “duty to declare,” a resident’s obligation to inform law enforcement of a firearm in his or her vehicle or on his or her person. It also allows for a law enforcement officer to disarm a resident on the grounds of “reasonable suspicion” the person plans to commit or has committed a crime. The resident can also be relieved of a weapon if posing a threat to themselves, the public or the officer. A home or property owner still reserves the right to prohibit a resident from bringing a firearm onto private property.
The Alabama Sheriffs Association, Alabama Association of School Resource Officers and Associations of County Commissions of Alabama voiced opposition to the law in 2022 due to the potential threat to the public and law enforcement officers.
Other bills becoming law include:
- House Bill 17: The Bill Clardy Act allows the use of court-ordered wiretaps by law enforcement in drug investigations and other situations. The act will become law in February 2023.
- House Bill 513: Redefines a shotgun as a weapon that is “made or remade, and intended to be fired from the shoulder and designed or redesigned and made or remade to use the energy of the explosive in a fixed shotgun shell to fire through a smooth bore either a number of ball shot or a single projectile for each single pull of the trigger.”
- House Bill 82: The Small Business Relief and Revitalization Act of 2022 provides both corporate and income tax relief provisions. Additionally, it allows for small business sales tax and business personal property tax relief. Specific tax relief for farmers is included by not including the loan forgiveness given by the American Rescue Plan as taxable income nor will it be a part of the income tax deduction figures. Also included is the reduction of estimated sales tax payments for over 2,400 small businesses.
- House Bill 284: The state law amendment on human trafficking includes the specification of the “use or threatened use of a law or legal process, whether administrative, civil, or criminal, in any manner for any purpose for which the law was not designed, in order to exert pressure on another person to cause that person or another person to take some action or refrain from taking some action.”
- Senate Bill 216: The amendment to state law to create more thorough and accurate tracking of Alabama tobacco tax by the Alabama Department of Revenue
- Senate Bill 224: The state law amendment will require recipients of unemployment compensation to contact no less than three potential employers per week in order to receive benefits.