Section 40-21-53

Electric, hydroelectric, gas, or any other public utility - License tax - Credit on electric bills for certain persons.

(a) Each person, firm, or corporation, including any corporations operating an electric or hydroelectric public utility; or a gas public utility; or any privately owned and operated wastewater system as defined in Section 22-25B-1 which is required by Chapter 25B of Title 22, to be operated and maintained by a wastewater management entity certified by the Public Service Commission; or any other public or municipal utility now paying the two and two-tenths percent shall be subject to the provisions of this section and shall pay to the state a license tax equal to two and two-tenths percent on each $1 of gross receipts of such public utility for the preceding year; except, that gross receipts from the sale of electricity for resale by such electric or hydroelectric public utilities and gross receipts from the sale of electricity to the persons identified in subsection (b) of this section shall be deducted in computing the amount of tax due hereunder. For the first year's business, where an existing electric public utility is taken over, such license tax payable to the state shall be equal to two and two-tenths percent on each $1 of gross receipts for the preceding year of the electric utility taken over, after deduction of gross receipts derived from sales of electricity for resale and gross receipts from the sale of electricity to the persons identified in subsection (b) of this section and less whatever sum the prior operators shall have paid as such license tax on the gross receipts for that year. Where no existing electric public utility is taken over, the license tax for the first year upon such utility shall be based upon the first year's business, computed as provided hereinabove, but shall in no event be less than $100 for the first year's business. Any person, firm, or corporation establishing a new electric public utility shall pay to the state the sum of $100 and shall also at the same time execute a bond payable to the State of Alabama to insure payment of whatever sum in addition to such $100 may be due when, at the end of the first year the amount of gross receipts for the year is ascertainable. Such license tax shall be paid to the Department of Revenue by check made payable to the Treasurer and shall be paid quarterly, one fourth on October 1, one fourth on January 1, one fourth on April 1 and one fourth on July 1 and shall become delinquent on the fifteenth day of each of said months. Payment shall be accompanied by a statement made by the president or other officer of the public utility or by the owner thereof, giving the name of the person, firm, or corporation owning and operating such public utility and the principal place of business thereof, together with a statement under oath of the amount of gross receipts of such public utility for the preceding year. The books of every person, firm, or corporation operating such public utility shall be at all times open to the inspection of the Department of Revenue. Any person failing to make such sworn statement or willfully making a false statement of the gross receipts of such public utility shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be fined not exceeding $500 and shall also forfeit to the state three times the amount of the license for such public utility, but no license under this schedule shall be paid to the county or counties.

(b)(1) On or after October 1, 1981 any person who is 62 years of age or older or totally and permanently disabled and such person is head of a household and does not share his or her residence with more than one other adult person who is less than 62 years of age and who receives electricity at such residence from a utility which is subject to the 2.2 percent license tax levied in subsection (a) of this section shall be entitled to qualify, in accordance with the provisions of subdivision (2) of this subsection, for a credit on his or her monthly electric bill in the amount of the exemption from the 2.2 percent license tax with respect to sales of electricity to such person provided in subsection (a) of this section; provided that the combined gross incomes of all persons who live at the residence of such person 62 years of age or older or such totally and permanently disabled person shall not exceed $12,000 annually. Eligibility for this credit applies only to the extent and amount that it is billed to the customers as a normal requirement under its rates.

(2) Any person who seeks to qualify for the credit provided in subdivision (1) of this subsection shall make application to the Department of Human Resources in accordance with the rules promulgated by the Department of Human Resources for the implementation and enforcement of this section. The Department of Human Resources shall periodically notify, in writing, each electric utility in the state which is subject to payment of the 2.2 percent license tax levied in subsection (a) of this section regarding those customers who are entitled to receive the monthly credit. Within 45 days after receipt of notification for such monthly credit the electric utility shall commence providing such credit for gross receipts license tax that otherwise would be billed.

(3) Any person who wrongfully qualifies for such exemption by giving false information shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction may be fined not to exceed $500.

(Acts 1935, No. 194, p. 256; Code 1940, T. 51, §178; Acts 1971, No. 1412, p. 2406, §1; Acts 1981, No. 81-867, p. 1659; Act 2009-773, p. 2388, §3.)