MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Alabama Senate Rules Chair Senator Jabo Waggoner (R-Vestavia Hills) thanked the Alabama House of Representatives for Tuesday’s final passage of Senate Bill 311, which he sponsored and which was handled in the House of Representatives by Representative Jack Williams (R-Vestavia Hills).
“In recent years, Birmingham has not been as competitive with other major cities in the south as we used to be. Our legislation is a bold statement that Birmingham will again strongly compete for tourism dollars,” Waggoner said.
“Tourism is an important economic engine to our state and particularly to Birmingham. By final passage of Senate Bill 311, we are making a bold statement that we can and will be competitive again for tourism and convention business,” Waggoner said.
Waggoner pointed out that just in the short-term, the expansion and modernization of the BJCC (Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Center) during construction is projected to generate over $325 million in economic impact, over $130 million in wages, and employ over 3,700 people.
“The upgrade and expansion of the BJCC will allow us to attract and accommodate marquee sporting events, concerts, and conventions – it’s that simple,” Waggoner noted.
“Our goal has been for day one to enhance the success and long-term marketability of the BJCC as critical to economic impact and growth benefiting the Birmingham area,” Waggoner said.
Combined with existing operations of the BJCC, the total annual economic impact generated by the operations of the BJCC will be over a quarter of a billion dollars to the Birmingham area annually, Waggoner said.
“You just have to look at the economic revitalization and transformation of Regions Field, Railroad Park and Norwood have done for the south side. Passage of Senate Bill 311 will do the same for the long-term economic impact and revitalization of neighborhoods around the BJCC,” Waggoner said.
The bill now goes to Governor Ivey for her signature.
Senator Jabo Waggoner is a Republican representing portions of Jefferson County in the Alabama State Senate. He is the chairman of the Senate Rules Committee, which sets the agenda of bills to be considered. Senator Waggoner and his wife reside in Vestavia Hills.