The Alabama House is expected to delay votes on a series of tax bills aimed at solving the state's general fund shortfall.
The House rules committee today proposed a new agenda instead of a number of GOP-backed bills that had divided some members of the party.
The package would raise less than a third of the $541 million requested by Gov. Robert Bentley in a separate tax package. The largest plank of the revenue plan is a 25-cents-per-pack cigarette tax increase.
The Republican leader of the Alabama Senate says he will introduce legislation to authorize a lottery and casino gambling in the state.
Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh says that it is time to let the people of Alabama make a decision on gambling. Flanked by a sign reading, "Let the people vote," Marsh says Alabama is in a dire fiscal situation and the state needs additional revenue. Marsh says Alabama sends money every year across state lines to casinos and lotteries in other states.
Alabama's attorney general says law enforcement agents have seized more than 1,000 gambling machines and cash from casinos in Greene County.
Attorney General Luther Strange said in a news release that the seizures came as law enforcement agents served search warrants at four casinos. He said the action came in response to allegations of illegal gambling operations.
The search warrants were served Monday morning at Greenetrack and Greene Charity in Eutaw, Ala., and at Frontier Bingo and River's Edge in Knoxville, Ala.
A federal prosecutor is opposed to Country Crossing casino developer Ronnie Gilley getting a third delay on when he must report to prison. Justice Department prosecutor Kendall Day filed court papers Tuesday saying the department opposes another delay for medical reasons. Day said the federal prison system can provide Gilley with the post-operative care he might require. Gilley was supposed to report to prison Aug. 27 to serve more than six years for offering bribes. U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson extended that until Sept. 24 to allow time for Gilley to have surgery.
The state's troubled General Fund is getting nearly $550,000 from a raid on a gambling hall in Lowndes County. Attorney General Luther Strange's office announced that Circuit Judge Robert Vance approved the forfeiture of the money to state. Alabama's gambling task force seized the money during a raid on electronic bingo machines at the White Hall Entertainment Center in March 2009. The operators, Cornerstone Community Outreach and Freedom Trail Ventures, recently agreed to forfeit the $549,981. The judge approved it in a one-paragraph order Tuesday.