Jeffco lawmaker offers occupational tax with a twist | News
On Monday, a Jefferson County lawmaker will offer what he believes could be the answer to the county's financial crisis. Vestavia Hills Representative Jack Williams will be introducing a new occupational tax bill in the state legislature, but there will be a twist to it.
Representative Williams is alarmed the county voted last week not to make a $15-million debt payment on its general obligation bonds. Williams fears this could make it harder for all counties in Alabama to get bond deals in the future for their projects.
Currently, Jefferson County is a facing a funding crisis since the old job tax was struck down in court, a ruling that would cost the county $70-million. This has lead to job cuts and it has contributed to those hours of waiting in line to do business with the county. County commissioner say without a new job tax they will be cutting more jobs and services.
Williams is looking to install a new job tax. Most of the money would go to the county but UAB would get about 20% of the tax. That money could be used by the school to land federal research projects and create more jobs in Birmingham. Williams would phase out the tax once the county pays off its education bonds. Williams would like to see some of the indigent care fund, which all goes to Cooper Green Mercy Hospital, be freed up so some could go to other county needs.
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