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Category: Press Releases

Alabama Power offers payment plans for customers affected by COVID-19

  • August 19th, 2020

By Alabama NewsCenter Staff // August 18, 2020

Supporting customers affected by COVID-19 with tailored, customized solutions to meet their needs remains a priority as Alabama Power continues to navigate the pandemic. In a time that presents unique challenges, the company’s support of its customers and the communities it calls home has not wavered.

As part of continued customer support, Alabama Power is offering a new, easy-to-use payment plan service to help customers facing economic or medical hardships due to COVID-19. Payment plans allow customers to spread out energy bill balances over several months.

To enroll, customers can visit AlabamaPower.com/PaymentPlan or use the automated system at 1-800-245-2244 to check eligibility and set up a plan in a few simple steps.

Alabama Power will return to standard business operations for customers on Sept. 28. In addition to continuing to support organizations in the state through the Alabama Power Foundation’s $1 million pledge, standard business operations include the following services for residential and business customers:

Responsibly reopening walk-in services at Alabama Power business offices and Appliance Centers.
Continuing to work individually with customers on payment assistance resources.
Using multiple channels to notify customers behind on payments options to maintain service.
Since the state of emergency was declared in March, Alabama Power has not disconnected or charged late fees to any customer affected by COVID-19 and will extend the disconnect suspension to Sept. 28 when standard business operations resume.

As it always does, the company’s customer service team stands ready to work individually with customers who need help. Customers are encouraged to reach out for support online at AlabamaPower.com or call 1-800-245-2244.

Alabama Power will provide additional relief to customers adversely affected by COVID-19, with the typical customer set to receive a $25 credit on October bills due to lower fuel expenses. Credits will depend on energy use and could vary.

Alabama Power also offers several programs designed to help low-income, elderly or disabled customers with energy bills:

  • Project SHARE: A program in partnership with the Salvation Army, Project SHARE helps pay energy bills of low-income Alabamians who are age 60 or older and/or disabled. Customers who want to request energy assistance can apply at their local Salvation Army office or by calling 205-328-2420. Alabama Power customers who want to help others can donate by checking the Project SHARE box on their Alabama Power bill.
  • The Alabama Business Charitable Trust Fund: The ABC Trust works with local community action agencies to help cover the cost of heating and cooling for low-income families and those struggling with temporary financial problems. Customers who are interested can contact the community action agency in their county. For more information, visit PowerofGood.com. Click the “What We Do” tab, “Community Support” and then “ABC Trust.”
  • Energy bill discounts: Discounts are available for customers receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Medicaid for Low Income Families (MLIF). The discount includes $14.50 toward the customer charge. Eligible customers can sign up at any Alabama Power business office or by phone at 1-800-245-2244.

Alabama Power is preparing in compliance with safety best practices to responsibly adjust operations at business offices and Appliance Centers as part of normal business to provide walk-in service options for customers. Customers should comply with signs in the offices to ensure Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines are followed to protect the safety and health of fellow customers and employees. Limited customer capacity at offices will also be implemented.

While walk-in operations will be available for service, customers are encouraged to use 24/7 payment kiosks, drop boxes and drive-thru options where available. Customers have one or more service options available at each office.

Customers who prefer to transact business with Alabama Power through the company’s digital options or by phone can visit AlabamaPower.com/MyPayment, use its automated system at 1-800-245-2244, or pay through Bill Matrix at 1-800-835-2702.

Another option is visiting one of many Authorized Payment Locations, including grocery stores, drug stores and banks, where bills can be paid with cash. Customers are encouraged to find the location most convenient to them at AlabamaPower.com/PayinPerson.

Learn More

NEW ON-LINE SYSTEM AVAILABLE FOR CONSUMERS TO REPORT UNSOLICITED SEED PACKAGES FROM CHINA

  • July 29th, 2020

MONTGOMERY, Ala. – The Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries (ADAI) continues to collect reports from citizens who received unsolicited packages from China containing seeds. ADAI has established an on-line reporting system for Alabama residents who received suspicious seeds they did not order. Please visit www.agi.alabama.gov/reportseeds and provide the requested information. At the end of the on-line form, consumers will be given directions on how to store the seeds properly until contacted by ADAI.

Currently, there is not any evidence indicating this is something other than a “brushing scam” where people receive unsolicited items from a seller who then posts false customer reviews to boost sales.

ADAI is currently collecting seed packages from recipients and is testing their contents for unknown compounds, noxious weed seed, and invasive species. This testing will determine if they contain anything that could negatively impact U.S. agriculture or the environment.

Please remember to hold onto the seeds and packaging, including the mailing label, until someone from ADAI contacts you with further instructions. DO NOT open the packaging or plant the seeds.

For more information, contact ADAI’s Ag Compliance section at 334-240-7304.

Learn More

Secretary Merrill Warns of Misleading Letter Being Circulated Through Business Community

  • June 26th, 2020

Thursday, December 19, 2019 – MONTGOMERY – Secretary of State John H. Merrill warns the business community of a misleading letter from the “AL Certificate Service” being circulated across the state.

After receiving numerous constituency concerns related to the authenticity of this group sending out “Certificate of Existence” request forms, Secretary Merrill cautions business owners to be wary of information sent by non-state agencies.

Secretary Merrill warned, “This group is not associated with the state. Business entities looking to obtain their official Certificate of Existence should contact our office directly at (334) 242-5324.”

The Office of the Secretary of State has been working to stop the spread of this misleading and potentially deceptive information and has reported this organization to the Office of the Attorney General.

Our Office will continue to actively monitor the situation to ensure Alabamians are provided with accurate and up-to-date information.

Learn More

Secretary Merrill Announces Three Consecutive Years of Same-Day Business Filings

  • June 21st, 2019

Friday, June 21, 2019 – MONTGOMERY –Today marks three consecutive years of same-day business filings by the Alabama Secretary of State’s Office.

“Today, we have reached a great milestone in modernizing the business filings process for all corporate filings,” said Secretary Merrill.

“When I took office January 19, 2015, the business filing process where corporations were recorded took up to 7 months. Not only is the business harmed, but some business owners had to wait 7 months to open a simple business bank account, obtain a line of credit or bank loan, or have appropriate resources to meet their first payroll. Bureaucracy does not care if your small business is your only source of income. The system was covered in red tape that had significant impacts for all hard-working business owners.

“I am proud to say that now, business owners will never have to wait longer than the one-day speed our office so efficiently provides,” said Merrill. He added, “We no longer operate at the speed of government, we are operating at the speed of business!”

“Government should be working for the people and helping businesses grow and thrive, not burdening them with endless processing times that inhibit a business’s ability to provide goods and services,” said Business Council of Alabama President and CEO Katie Boyd Britt. “I commend the Secretary of State’s Office for their dedication and service to the people of Alabama.”

Since implementing the same-day policy, filings are made significantly more helpful to the business community and Alabama’s economy.

“I have not received a complaint about the business filings procedure or turnaround time since Secretary Merrill has had this policy in place,” said Rosemary Elebash, National Federation of Independent Business Alabama State Director. “Starting a business is time-consuming enough, whether someone is starting a new business or changing their current business. When you’re made to wait on a process outside your control, you are not producing anything, hiring anyone, or earning income. Therefore, it is so important to get this done in a timely manner. What a great accomplishment it is to have so consistently served Alabama business people this way.”

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Read the original press release at the Alabama Secretary of State website.

Deadline Approaching in Alabama for SBA Working Capital Loans for Drought

  • October 16th, 2018

ATLANTA – The U.S. Small Business Administration is reminding small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and most private nonprofit organizations that Nov. 15 is the filing deadline for federal economic injury disaster loans in Alabama as a result of drought that began on Jan. 30, 2018.

The SBA’s disaster declaration includes the following counties: Bibb, Blount, Calhoun, Chilton, Coosa, Cullman, Etowah, Fayette, Greene, Hale, Jefferson, Lamar, Marion, Perry, Pickens, Saint Clair, Shelby, Sumter, Talladega, Tuscaloosa, Walker and Winston in Alabama.

Under this declaration, the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program is available to eligible farm-related and nonfarm-related entities that suffered financial losses as a direct result of this disaster. With the exception of aquaculture enterprises, SBA cannot provide disaster loans to agricultural producers, farmers, or ranchers. Nurseries are eligible to apply for economic injury disaster loans for losses caused by drought conditions.

The loans are for working capital and can be up to $2 million with interest rates of 3.58 percent for eligible small businesses and 2.5 percent for nonprofit organizations, and terms up to 30 years.
Applicants may apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) via SBA’s secure website at DisasterLoan.sba.gov.

Disaster loan information and application forms may also be obtained by calling the SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing) or by sending an email to disastercustomerservice@sba.gov. Loan applications can be downloaded from the SBA’s website at www.sba.gov. Completed applications should be mailed to: U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.

Completed loan applications must be returned to SBA no later than Nov. 15, 2018.

View the original press release here.

Own a Business in Alabama? Be ADOR’s B.E.S.T.

  • September 4th, 2018
Check out ADOR’s Auburn/Opelika-area State Tax Seminar on Sept. 13
 
AUBURN, Aug. 30, 2018 – State tax obligations for business owners – licenses, sales tax, property tax, withholding, etc. – are a lot to be responsible for. To help Alabama business owners better understand and master these requirements, the Alabama Department of Revenue (ADOR) invites business owners to ADOR’s free Business Essentials for State Taxpayers (B.E.S.T.) Seminar on Thursday, Sept. 13, at 10 a.m. in Auburn.

The seminar will be held at the CASIC Building, room 109, 559 Devall Drive.

B.E.S.T. Seminars help new business owners navigate through unfamiliar tax complexities while updating current business owners on tax law changes. Conducted by ADOR specialists, B.E.S.T. Seminars offer a brief but comprehensive overview of Alabama’s business taxes, the business owner’s tax obligations, the necessary forms, and other requirements. Seminar attendees also receive information on electronic filing and Alabama’s ONE SPOT (https://revenue.alabama.gov/sales-use/one-spot/), a free Internet portal that allows business taxpayers to file and pay state, county, and city sales, use, and rental taxes all in one place!

While there is no charge to attend the B.E.S.T. Seminars, reservations are required to ensure adequate space is available. Reserve your spot online. Each attendee must register individually, even if they are from the same company. Once you’ve registered online, you will receive an email confirmation. If you have any questions, please call Marcia Sanders at 334-887-9549, ext. 221.

For more information on B.E.S.T. Seminars and other B.E.S.T. resources, visit our website at https://revenue.alabama.gov/taxpayer-advocacy/b-e-s-t-seminars/. B.E.S.T. Seminars are two hours long plus additional time for questions and answers. Please plan to arrive at least 15 minutes prior to the scheduled seminar.

Own a Business in Alabama? Be ADOR’s B.E.S.T.

  • September 4th, 2018
Check out ADOR’s Birmingham-area State Tax Seminar on Sept. 11
 
BIRMINGHAM, Aug. 28, 2018 – State tax obligations for business owners – licenses, sales tax, property tax, withholding, etc. – are a lot to be responsible for. To help Alabama business owners better understand and master these requirements, the Alabama Department of Revenue (ADOR) invites business owners to ADOR’s free Business Essentials for State Taxpayers (B.E.S.T.) Seminar on Tuesday, Sept. 11, at 10 a.m. in Birmingham.

The seminar will be held at the Jefferson/Shelby Taxpayer Service Center, 2020 Valleydale Road, Suite 280.

B.E.S.T. Seminars help new business owners navigate through unfamiliar tax complexities while updating current business owners on tax law changes. Conducted by ADOR specialists, B.E.S.T. Seminars offer a brief but comprehensive overview of Alabama’s business taxes, the business owner’s tax obligations, the necessary forms, and other requirements. Seminar attendees also receive information on electronic filing and Alabama’s ONE SPOT (https://revenue.alabama.gov/sales-use/one-spot/), a free Internet portal that allows business taxpayers to file and pay state, county, and city sales, use, and rental taxes all in one place!

While there is no charge to attend the B.E.S.T. Seminars, reservations are required to ensure adequate space is available. Reserve your spot online. Each attendee must register individually, even if they are from the same company. Once you’ve registered online, you will receive an email confirmation. If you have any questions, please call Lakanjala Roberts at 205-733-2740.

For more information on B.E.S.T. Seminars and other B.E.S.T. resources, visit our website at https://revenue.alabama.gov/taxpayer-advocacy/b-e-s-t-seminars/. B.E.S.T. Seminars are two hours long plus additional time for questions and answers. Please plan to arrive at least 15 minutes prior to the scheduled seminar.

Own a Business in Alabama? Be ADOR’s B.E.S.T.

  • August 23rd, 2018
Check out ADOR’s Dothan-area State Tax Seminar on Sept. 6
 
DOTHAN, Aug. 23, 2018 – State tax obligations for business owners – licenses, sales tax, property tax, withholding, etc. – are a lot to be responsible for. To help Alabama business owners better understand and master these requirements, the Alabama Department of Revenue (ADOR) invites business owners to ADOR’s free Business Essentials for State Taxpayers (B.E.S.T.) Seminar on Thursday, Sept. 6, at 11 a.m. in Dothan.

The seminar will be held at the Dothan Area Chamber of Commerce, 102 Jamestown Blvd.

B.E.S.T. Seminars help new business owners navigate through unfamiliar tax complexities while updating current business owners on tax law changes. Conducted by ADOR specialists, B.E.S.T. Seminars offer a brief but comprehensive overview of Alabama’s business taxes, the business owner’s tax obligations, the necessary forms, and other requirements. Seminar attendees also receive information on electronic filing and Alabama’s ONE SPOT (https://revenue.alabama.gov/sales-use/one-spot/), a free Internet portal that allows business taxpayers to file and pay state, county, and city sales, use, and rental taxes all in one place!

While there is no charge to attend the B.E.S.T. Seminars, reservations are required to ensure adequate space is available. Reserve your spot online. Each attendee must register individually, even if they are from the same company. Once you’ve registered online, you will receive an email confirmation. If you have any questions, please call Kathy Clements or Jennifer Townsend at 334-793-5803, ext. 0.

For more information on B.E.S.T. Seminars and other B.E.S.T. resources, visit our website at https://revenue.alabama.gov/taxpayer-advocacy/b-e-s-t-seminars/. B.E.S.T. Seminars are two hours long plus additional time for questions and answers. Please plan to arrive at least 15 minutes prior to the scheduled seminar.

ADOR Publishes Guidance Related to the Federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

  • August 1st, 2018
ADOR Publishes Guidance Related to the Federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act
 
MONTGOMERY, July 31, 2018 – The Alabama Department of Revenue has issued its preliminary guidance on the impact of the provisions of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA). Signed by President Donald Trump on Dec. 22, 2017, the TCJA enacted changes across the board to the federal tax system for both businesses and individuals, primarily for tax years beginning on or after Jan. 1, 2018.

The Department’s guidance addresses whether and how the provisions of the TCJA are tied to Alabama’s taxing regime, as they relate to individuals (including sole proprietors), corporations, and financial institutions.

This guidance is preliminary and subject to revision as more information becomes available, including additional federal guidance and input from other tax administrative agencies and/or the private sector.

For up-to-date TCJA guidance, visit https://revenue.alabama.gov/audience/professionals and click on “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act” in the menu on the left.

Own a Business in Alabama? Be ADOR’s B.E.S.T.

  • July 31st, 2018
Check out ADOR’s Gadsden-area State Tax Seminar on Aug. 14
 
GADSDEN, July 31, 2018 – State tax obligations for business owners – licenses, sales tax, property tax, withholding, etc. – are a lot to be responsible for. To help Alabama business owners better understand and master these requirements, the Alabama Department of Revenue (ADOR) invites business owners to ADOR’s free Business Essentials for State Taxpayers (B.E.S.T.) Seminar on Tuesday, Aug. 14, at 10 a.m. or 2 p.m. in Gadsden.

The seminar will be held at the Gadsden Taxpayer Service Center, 701 Forrest Ave.

B.E.S.T. Seminars help new business owners navigate through unfamiliar tax complexities while updating current business owners on tax law changes. Conducted by ADOR specialists, B.E.S.T. Seminars offer a brief but comprehensive overview of Alabama’s business taxes, the business owner’s tax obligations, the necessary forms, and other requirements. Seminar attendees also receive information on electronic filing and Alabama’s ONE SPOT (https://revenue.alabama.gov/sales-use/one-spot/), a free Internet portal that allows business taxpayers to file and pay state, county, and city sales, use, and rental taxes all in one place!

While there is no charge to attend the B.E.S.T. Seminars, reservations are required to ensure adequate space is available. Reserve your spot online for either the 10 a.m. session or the 2 p.m. session. Each attendee must register individually, even if they are from the same company. Once you’ve registered online, you will receive an email confirmation. If you have any questions, please call Isabel Tongsuvone at 256-459-3082.

 

For more information on B.E.S.T. Seminars and other B.E.S.T. resources, visit our website at https://revenue.alabama.gov/taxpayer-advocacy/b-e-s-t-seminars/. B.E.S.T. Seminars are two hours long plus additional time for questions and answers. Please plan to arrive at least 15 minutes prior to the scheduled seminar.