April 2018 Newsletter

Lead Article

Session brings 4 big Arise wins

Transit fund created, ETF funding protected

The Alabama Legislature had a fairly quiet regular session in 2018 – but it was a big year for Arise. Thanks to our members’ dedicated advocacy, we made meaningful breakthroughs on public transportation and criminal justice debt reform. Arise members also led the charge to defeat a proposed state tax break for private school tuition and to prevent the Legislature from creating new barriers to food assistance and health care access.

Sometimes Arise members’ advocacy gets results in a more subtle way – such as making a bad bill a little less bad. That was the case with HB 421, sponsored by Rep. David Sessions, R-Grand Bay. Gov. Kay Ivey signed the new measure, which erodes renters’ rights by reducing the number of curable lease breaches under Alabama law. But the original version was even worse: It would have allowed just three days to correct a lease violation and would have cut the notice period for lease termination from seven days to three. After Arise members flooded representatives with calls and emails against the bill, the House adopted an amendment by Rep. Merika Coleman, D-Birmingham, to delete that language.

The session is over, but our work isn’t. We’re fighting hard against a state plan to take Medicaid away from thousands of parents across Alabama. We’ll also make the case for strong investment in SNAP as Congress considers the Farm Bill this year.