House panel votes to remove sales tax from food

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - A proposal to remove the state's 4 percent tax from groceries has passed the first hurdle in the Alabama Legislature.

The bill by Rep. John Knight of Montgomery was approved Thursday morning on a voice vote with several members expressing opposition. A bill to remove the tax from food purchases passed the House last year, but was defeated in the Senate.

The bill is a constitutional amendment and would have to be approved by Alabama voters if it passes the Legislature.

The measure would replace the lost revenue from the sales tax by removing the deduction for federal income taxes paid from some higher income taxpayers. That's a change from last year's bill that would have removed the federal income tax deduction for all taxpayers.

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