The high price of Alabama’s low taxes | #republicans | #Alabama | #GOP

Say this about Alabama’s attitude toward guns: It reveals lawmakers’ priorities.

For instance: when faced last year with a choice between gun access and funding law enforcement, Republican legislators chose gun access. 

This came from a bill that made concealed carry permits optional. There was no mass demand for this. But the National Rifle Association threw a ball, and GOP lawmakers chased it. 

But here’s the problem. Pistol permits were a major source of revenue for Alabama sheriffs. Losing that created a funding problem, as the Alabama Sheriffs’ Association repeatedly pointed out before passage.

Lawmakers tried to address that shortfall with a grant program, which doesn’t restore all the lost income. But as Ralph Chapoco reported in his series on fines and fees last week, they also quietly passed other bills creating or raising existing vehicle and court fees. 

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