Governor of Alabama
|Office website:||Official Link|
|2013 FY Budget:||$1,522,187|
|Term limits:||2 terms|
|Length of term:||4 years|
|Authority:||Constitution of Alabama, Article V, Section 113|
|Name:||Robert J. Bentley|
|Assumed office:||January 17, 2011|
|Compensation:||$119,950 (Accepted $0)|
|Next election:||November 6, 2018|
|Last election:||November 4, 2014|
|Other Alabama Executive Offices|
|Governor • Lieutenant Governor • Secretary of State • Attorney General • Treasurer • Auditor • Superintendent of Education • Agriculture Commissioner • Insurance Commissioner • Natural Resources Commissioner • Labor Commissioner • Public Service Commission|
- 1 Current officeholder
- 2 Authority
- 3 Qualifications
- 4 Elections
- 5 Vacancies
- 6 Duties
- 7 Divisions
- 8 State budget
- 9 Compensation
- 10 Historical officeholders
- 11 History
- 12 Recent news
- 13 Contact Information
- 14 See also
- 15 External links
- 16 References
As of February 2015, Alabama is one of 23 Republican state government trifectas.
The 53rd and current governor of Alabama is Robert J. Bentley, a Republican. Bentley took office in January 2011, after winning the seat in the November 2010 midterms. He was re-elected on November 4, 2014.
Before becoming governor, Bentley served in the Alabama House of Representatives and as a founding partner and president of Alabama Dermatological Associates. He also served as a captain in the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam War from 1969 to 1971. Bentley earned a B.S. in Biology and Chemistry from the University of Alabama and an M.D. from the Medical College of Alabama. His wife, Dianne Bentley, is the First Lady of Alabama.
The supreme executive power of this state shall be vested in a chief magistrate, who shall be styled "The Governor of the State of Alabama.
|2015 • 2014 • 2013 • 2012 • 2011 • 2010|
|Current Lt. Governors|
|Lt. Governor Elections|
|2015 • 2014 • 2013 • 2012 • 2011 • 2010|
The governor, lieutenant governor, attorney-general, state auditor, secretary of state, state treasurer, superintendent of education, commissioner of agriculture and industries, elected after the ratification of this Constitution, shall hold their respective offices for the term of four years from the first Monday after the second Tuesday in January next succeeding their election, and until their successors shall be elected and qualified.
The governor and lieutenant governor shall each be at least thirty years of age when elected, and shall have been citizens of the United States ten years and resident citizens of this state at least seven years next before the date of their election.
Per Section 114 of the state constitution, Alabama elects its governors during federal midterm election years (e.g. 2018, 2022, 2026, 2030 and 2034). Section 116 sets the governor's inauguration for the first Monday after the second Tuesday in the January following an election.
|The governor, lieutenant governor, attorney-general, state auditor, secretary of state, state treasurer, superintendent of education, and commissioner of agriculture and industries shall be elected by the qualified electors of the state at the same time and places appointed for the election of members of the legislature in the year nineteen hundred and two, and in every fourth year thereafter.|
|The governor, lieutenant governor, attorney-general, state auditor, secretary of state, state treasurer, superintendent of education, commissioner of agriculture and industries, elected after the ratification of this Constitution, shall hold their respective offices for the term of four years from the first Monday after the second Tuesday in January next succeeding their election, and until their successors shall be elected and qualified.|
- See also: States with gubernatorial term limits
Alabama governors are restricted to two consecutive terms in office, after which they must wait one term before being eligible to run again.
|[The Governor] shall be eligible to succeed himself in office, but no person shall be eligible to succeed himself for more than one additional term.|
- See also: Alabama Gubernatorial election, 2014
|Governor of Alabama, 2014|
|Republican||Robert Bentley Incumbent||63.6%||750,231|
|Election Results via Alabama Secretary of State.|
To view the electoral history dating back to 2002 for the office of Governor of Alabama, Click [show] to expand the section.
- See also: How gubernatorial vacancies are filled
In the event that the elected governor is unable to complete his term, the Lieutenant Governor of Alabama succeeds him. The lieutenant governor also becomes acting governor at any time when the elected governor is unable to discharge the office for 20 consecutive days. Because Alabama elects her governor and lieutenant governor on separate tickets, it is theoretically possible for the governorship of the state to change parties without an election occurring.
Any two other constitutional officers, excluding the individual who would succeed the governor, may also file a affidavit with the state Supreme Court declaring that the sitting governor is of unsound mind, in which case the determines whether the governor is mentally competent to exercise his office.
The governor is responsible for upholding the Alabama Constitution and executing state law. The governor also is commander-in-chief of the state's military forces (the Alabama Army National Guard and Alabama Air National Guard, which are part of the National Guard of the United States, and the Alabama State Defense Force, which is the State Defense Forces). As commander-in-chief the governor may call out the state's military forces preserve the public peace when it is not in active service of the United States.
At least once every legislative session, the governor is required to deliver an address to the state legislature, referred to as the "State of the State Address," regarding the condition and operation of the state government and to suggest new legislation.
Other duties and privileges of the office include:
- seeing that all laws of the state are faithfully executed.
- overseeing other state executive officers and agencies.
- convening extraordinary sessions of the legislature.
- presenting a budget for the state to the legislature.
- remitting fines and forfeitures and granting reprieves, paroles, commutations of sentence and pardons
- exercising a veto over bills
The governor's office includes a number of individual divisions:
- Executive Office
- Chief of Staff
- Constituent Services
Role in state budget
- See also: Alabama state budget and finances
The state operates on an annual budget cycle. Alabama's fiscal year runs from October 1 and ends September 30 of the following year. The sequence of key events in the budget process is as follows:
- In September of the year preceding the start of the new fiscal year, budget instructions are sent to state agencies.
- In November, agencies submit their budget requests to the governor.
- Budget hearings are held with state agencies in January.
- By the second legislative day of each regular session of the legislature, the governor must submit his or her proposed budget to the state legislature. These dates vary from session to session, occurring as early as January and as late as March.
- The legislature must pass a budget with a simple majority. The fiscal year begins in October.
The governor is required to submit a balanced budget to the legislature. In turn, the legislature must pass a balanced budget.
Governor's office budget
The budget for the governor's office in Fiscal Year 2012-2013 was $1,522,187.
The salary of the governor is established by the Alabama State Legislature, as required by constitutional provision. Article V, Section 118 of the state constitution requires that changes in compensation take effect in the term after they were passed.
|The governor, lieutenant governor, attorney-general, state auditor, secretary of state, state treasurer, superintendent of education, and commissioner of agriculture and industries, shall receive compensation to be fixed by law, which shall not be increased or diminished during the term for which they shall have been elected, and shall, except the lieutenant governor, reside at the state capital during the time they continue in office, except during epidemics.|
In 2014, the governor's salary was $119,950. However, Gov. Robert Bentley refused to accept his salary until the state's unemployment rate decreases, according to the Council of State Governments. 
In 2012, the governor's salary was $120,936.
|1||William Wyatt Bibb||December 14, 1819-July 10, 1820||Democratic-Republican|
|2||Thomas Bibb||July 10, 1820-November 9, 1821||Democratic-Republican|
|3||Israel Pickens||November 9, 1821-November 25, 1825||Democratic-Republican|
|4||John Murphy||November 25, 1825-November 25, 1829||Jackson Democrat|
|5||Gabriel Moore||November 25, 1829-March 3, 1831||Jackson Democrat|
|6||Samuel B. Moore||March 3, 1831-November 26, 1831||Democratic|
|7||John Gayle||November 26, 1831-November 21, 1835||Democratic|
|8||Clement Comer Clay||November 21, 1835-July 17, 1837||Democratic|
|9||Hugh McVay||July 17, 1837-November 30. 1837||Democratic|
|10||Arthur P. Bagby||November 30, 1837-November 22, 1841||Democratic|
|11||Benjamin Fitzpatrick||November 22, 1841-December 10, 1845||Democratic|
|12||Joshua L. Martin||December 10, 1845-December 16, 1847||Independent|
|13||Reuben Champman||December 16, 1847-December 17, 1849||Democratic|
|14||Henry W. Collier||December 17, 1849-December 20, 1853||Democratic|
|15||John A. Winston||December 20, 1853-December 1, 1857||Democratic|
|16||Andrew B. Moore||December 1, 1857-December 2, 1861||Democratic|
|17||John G. Shorter||December 2, 1861-December 1, 1863||Democratic|
|18||Thomas H. Watts||December 1, 1863-May 1, 1865||Democratic|
|19||Lewis E. Parsons||June 21, 1865-December 13, 1865||Democratic|
|20||Robert M. Patton||December 13, 1865-July 24, 1868||Pre-War Whig|
|Military||Wager Swayne||March 2, 1867-July 14, 1868||None|
|21||William Hugh Smith||July 24, 1868-November 26, 1870||Republican|
|22||Robert B. Lindsay||November 26. 1870-November 17, 1872||Democratic|
|23||David P. Lewis||November 17, 1872-November 24, 1874||Republican|
|24||George S. Houston||November 24, 1874-November 28. 1878||Democratic|
|25||Rufus W. Cobb||November 28, 1878-December 1, 1882||Democratic|
|26||Edward A. O'Neal||December 1, 1882-December 1, 1886||Democratic|
|27||Thomas Seay||December 1, 1886-December 1, 1890||Democratic|
|28||Thomas G. Jones||December 1, 1890-Decmeber 1, 1894||Democratic|
|29||William C. Oates||December 1, 1894-December 1, 1896||Democratic|
|30||Joseph F. Johnston||December 1, 1896-December 1, 1900||Democratic|
|Acting||William D. Jelks||December 1, 1900-December 26, 1900||Democratic|
|31||William J. Samford||December 1, 1900-June 11, 1901||Democratic|
|32||William Dorsey Jelks||June 11, 1901-January 14, 1907||Democratic|
|Acting||Russell M. Cunningham||April 25, 1904-March 5, 1905||Democratic|
|33||Braxton B. Comer||January 14, 1907-January 17, 1911||Democratic|
|34||Emmet O'Neal||January 17, 1911-January 18, 1915||Democratic|
|35||Charles Henderson||January 18, 1915-January 20, 1919||Democratic|
|36||Thomas E. Kilby||January 20, 1919-January 15, 1923||Democratic|
|37||William W. Brandon||January 15, 1923-January 17. 1927||Democratic|
|Acting||Charles S. McDowell, Jr.||July 10, 1924-July 11, 1924||Democratic|
|38||David Bibb Graves||January 17, 1927-January 19, 1931||Democratic|
|39||Benjamin Meek Miller||January 19, 1931-January 14, 1935||Democratic|
|40||David Bibb Graves||January 14, 1935-January 17, 1939||Democratic|
|41||Frank M. Dixon||January 17, 1939-January 19, 1943||Democratic|
|42||Chauncey Sparks||January 19, 1943-January 20, 1947||Democratic|
|43||Jim Folsom, Sr.||January 20, 1947-January 15, 1951||Democratic|
|44||Seth Gordon Persons||January 15, 1951-January 17, 1955||Democratic|
|45||Jim Folsom, Sr.||January 17, 1955-January 19, 1959||Democratic|
|46||John M. Patterson||January 19, 1959-January 14, 1963||Democratic|
|47||George Wallace||January 14, 1963-January 16, 1967||Democratic|
|48||Lurleen B. Wallace||January 16, 1967-May 7, 1968||Democratic|
|49||Albert P. Brewer||May 7, 1968-January 18, 1971||Democratic|
|50||George Wallace||January 18, 1971-January 15, 1979||Democratic|
|Acting||Jere Beasley||June 5, 1972-July 7. 1972||Democratic|
|51||Fob James||January 15, 1979-January 17, 1983||Democratic|
|52||George Wallace||January 17, 1983-January 19, 1987||Democratic|
|53||H. Guy Hunt||January 19, 1987-April 22, 1993||Republican|
|54||Jim Folsom, Jr.||April 22, 1993-January 16, 1995||Democratic|
|55||Fob James||January 16, 1995-January 18, 1999||Republican|
|56||Don Siegelman||January 18, 1999-January 20, 2003||Democratic|
|57||Bob Riley||January 20, 2003-January 17, 2011||Republican|
|58||Robert J. Bentley||January 17, 2011-||Republican|
Partisan balance 1992-2013
From 1992-2013, Alabama had Democratic governors in office for six years while there were Republican governors in office for 16 years, including the previous 11. Alabama was under Republican trifectas for the last three years of the study period.
Across the country, there were 493 years of Democratic governors (44.82%) and 586 years of Republican governors (53.27%) from 1992-2013.
Over the course of the 22-year study, state governments became increasingly more partisan. At the outset of the study period (1992), 18 of the 49 states with partisan legislatures had single-party trifectas and 31 states had divided governments. In 2013, only 13 states had divided governments, while single-party trifectas held sway in 36 states, the most in the 22 years studied.
SQLI and partisanship
The chart below depicts the partisanship of the Alabama state government and the state's SQLI ranking for the years studied. For the SQLI, the states were ranked from 1-50, with 1 being the best and 50 the worst. Between the years 1993-1994 and 1999-2002, Alabama had Democratic trifectas, and since 2011, Alabama has had a Republican trifecta. In every remaining year between 1992 and 2012, Alabama had a Republican governor with a Democratic legislature. In every year of the study, Alabama ranked in the bottom-10 on the SQLI ranking. Its lowest ranking occurred during the Democratic trifectas of 1999 and 2000 (46th), while the state’s highest ranking occurred during the divided government years of 2005 and 2006 (41st).
- SQLI average with Democratic trifecta: 44.33
- SQLI average with Republican trifecta: 43.50
- SQLI average with divided government: 42.83
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600 Dexter Avenue
Montgomery, Alabama 36130
Phone: (334) 242-7100
Fax: (334) 353-0004
- Project VoteSmart, "Bio of Robert Bentley," accessed July 6, 2011
- Office of the Alabama Governor, "Staff," accessed July 6, 2011
- National Conference of State Legislatures, "State Experiences with Annual and Biennial Budgeting," updated April 2011
- National Association of State Budget Officers, "Budget Processes in the States, Summer 2008," accessed February 21, 2014
- NCSL "Gubernatorial Veto Authority with Respect to Major Budget Bill(s)," accessed March 2, 2014
- Alabama Government Website, "State of Alabama General Fund, 2013 FY Appropriations," accessed March 29, 2013
- FindLaw, "ALA CODE § 36-6-8 : Alabama Code - Section 36-6-8: SALARIES OF CONSTITUTIONAL OFFICERS, PERSONS NOT COVERED BY MERIT SYSTEM AND PERSONS WHOSE SALARY NOT SET BY GOVERNOR," accessed February 17, 2015
- Council of State Governments, "SELECTED STATE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICIALS: ANNUAL SALARIES," accessed November 14, 2014
- Council of State Governments, "CSG Releases 2013 Governor Salaries," June 25, 2013
- Netstate, "Former Alabama State Governors," accessed July 24, 2013
- National Governors Association, "Alabama:Past Governos Bios," accessed July 24, 2013
State of Alabama
|State executive officers||
Governor | Attorney General | Secretary of State | Treasurer| Auditor| Superintendent of Education| Commissioner of Insurance| Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries| Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries| Commissioner of Labor| Public Service Commission|