Montgomery Circuit Court Judge Bill Shashy ruled against the plaintiff today in a lawsuit meant to challenge the state’s double-dipping ban, which went into effect November 4, 2014. Senator Jabo Waggoner (R-Vestavia Hills), the original sponsor of the legislation during a 2010 special session on ethics reform, praised the judge’s decision and pointed to a similar ruling by the Alabama Supreme Court relating to the two-year college system’s policy.
“Holding two state jobs at the same time can lead to corruption, which is why we took action to stop the practice when Republicans won the majority in 2010,” said Senator Jabo Waggoner. “The judge upholding our double-dipping ban today is a win for taxpayers and those who want honest government.”
Supporters of the two-state job ban highlighted during the court case that no one is prohibited from serving in the legislature because of the law. Instead, it requires lawmakers to choose between accepting their legislative position or continuing state employment.
“When placed in charge of the state legislature, we made it our first priority to clean up corruption and remove conflicts of interest,” stated Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh (R-Anniston). “The double-dipping ban is just one of the ways we addressed some systemic problems with the way things used to be done in the legislature.”
Alabama’s double-dipping law is consistent with the law of a majority of states. The federal government has prohibited the practice for decades under the provisions of the Hatch Act. The Hatch Act even goes further, prohibiting federal employees from even running for partisan elected office while employed by the government.