Pro-life legislation that would spur financial support for dozens of pregnancy resource centers across Alabama was introduced March 23 by Rep. Jamie Kiel, R-Russellville.
The Pregnancy Resource Act (House Bill 208) would provide a state income tax credit to individuals and businesses that contribute to eligible charitable organizations that operate as pregnancy centers or residential maternity facilities. This bill would provide tax credits of up to $10 million each year for the next five years.
In 2019, the Alabama Legislature passed the Human Life Protection Act, which prohibits almost all abortions in Alabama.
“I am very thankful for [the Human Life Protection Act] that now protects babies in the womb from being murdered,” Kiel said. “An awesome result of this law is that we will have more babies and mothers in the state. And with that comes great responsibility to care for the babies and mothers before and after birth.
“The church obviously plays a role in caring for ‘the least of these,’ but we also have pregnancy crisis centers throughout the state that are professionals in the field,” said Kiel, a member of Tharptown Baptist Church in Russellville, where he served as music director for 20 years.
Kiel said his bill would allow taxpayers to voluntarily give up to 50% of their state tax liability to these centers via tax credits.
It would help the centers provide free and low-cost medical, educational and support services to more women.
“It will be an incredible way for us to participate in the great work these centers are doing in 54 locations throughout the state,” he said. “Through this, I am hopeful that churches and their members realize the need for increased giving to the pregnancy resource centers. I am hopeful that we will all increase our giving.”
Bill has support in Senate also
Sen. Gerald Allen, R-Tuscaloosa, a deacon at Gilgal Baptist Church in Duncanville, strongly supports Kiel’s bill.
“Anything we can do to promote the life of a child has my full support,” Allen said. “Rep. Kiel’s bill is important for pregnancy resource centers across Alabama to provide needed equipment and supplies.”
Kiel is asking Alabama pastors and church members to contact their legislators to show their support for the Pregnancy Resource Act, which has been referred to the House Ways and Means Education Committee. Here is a map to use to find your elected officials.
Greg Davis, president and CEO of Alabama Citizens Action Program, which works with Alabama churches to serve as the state’s “moral advocates,” said this bill “is the next pro-life step for Alabama, along with updating our adoption codes.”
Bill to streamline adoption process passes both houses
In related news, after a four-year effort to revamp the state’s adoption code, the Alabama House of Representatives and Senate have approved a bill to overhaul the process.
House Bill 101, sponsored by Rep. Ginny Shaver, R-Leesburg, a member of Tates Chapel Baptist Church in Centre, is designed to make the adoption process quicker, more streamlined and more affordable for adoptive parents in the state.
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