Governor Bentley pushes tax plan with Madison County Chamber

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - The Huntsville-Madison County Chamber of Commerce rose to their feet to welcome Governor Robert Bentley as he spoke on two important issues for the state. The first? Incentive packages for companies.

"It's an incentive package based on debt, and we want to get away from that," said Governor Bentley.

He wants to instead base it on production. He also spoke at length about desires to offer additional incentives to companies that hire veterans.

"You guys that have been in the military like me, I have a soft spot in my heart for veterans, and I want companies to think about that."

The thrust of his speech asked citizens to encourage their legislators to vote in favor of the governor's proposed revenue plan with many tax increases.

"All I've presented are tax fairness issues, I believe ultimately we could actually have a surplus in the general fund," he said.

He took questions from the audience, which included county commissions, Huntsville and Madison mayors and city councils, and legislators.

He was asked about a potential lottery, to which he explained he does not oppose it, as long as it's done right, and not expected to be a primary source of funds.

"I just don't want gambling to be the way that we solve this problem."

As far as Madison County road projects caught in a billboard battle, he made his point simply.

"I don't want to embarrass any of our legislators by bringing money into their district when they really don't like taxes."

He added Alabama's 60-year financial problems must come tok an end, and that north Alabama has great representation to get it done.

"They may put up a few billboards occasionally but they really do a good job."