Associated Press en Alabama Seeks Federal Aid after Flooding <p>The state of <font color="red">Alabama</font> is seeking federal aid following last week's flooding across central <font color="red">Alabama</font>.</p><p>The state said Thursday it is asking the U.S. Small Business Administration to provide assistance in a seven-county region around Birmingham.</p><p>If approved, residents and business owners would be eligible for low-interest disaster loans in the counties of Bibb, Blount, Jefferson, St. Clair, Shelby, Tuscaloosa and Walker.</p> Fri, 18 Apr 2014 06:49:49 +0000 Associated Press 50374 at Alabama Seeks Federal Aid after Flooding Former Secretary of Alabama Senate Dies <p>Former longtime secretary of the <font color="red">Alabama</font> state Senate, McDowell Lee, has died at the age of 89.</p><p>His daughter Margaret Cunningham says Lee died Thursday afternoon after a brief illness at his home in Auburn.</p><p>Lee served as a secretary of the state senate for 47 years before retiring in 2010. Lee was the nation's longest serving legislative secretary at the time of his retirement.</p> Fri, 18 Apr 2014 06:42:25 +0000 Associated Press 50373 at Former Secretary of Alabama Senate Dies AEA Battles Tax Credits in Court, at Ballot Box <p>The state teachers' organization is fighting private school tax credits in court and the architect of the tax credits at the ballot box.</p><p>The <font color="red">Alabama</font> Education Association's political action committee filed a campaign finance report showing the largest donation it gave in March was $50,000 to Democratic state Senate candidate Taylor Stewart of Anniston. Stewart is opposing Republican Sen. Del Marsh of Anniston, who was the chief architect of the <font color="red">Alabama</font> Accountability Act.</p> Fri, 18 Apr 2014 06:38:21 +0000 Associated Press 50372 at AEA Battles Tax Credits in Court, at Ballot Box Transportation Secretary Visits Anniston Bus Plant <p>U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx visited a western <font color="red">Alabama</font> bus manufacturing plant as part of a national tour to highlight the importance of infrastructure investments.</p><p> <a href="" target="_blank">reports</a> Anthony Foxx toured the North American Bus Indus</p><p></p><p>tries plant in Anniston Wednesday to try drumming up support for a national infrastructure plan President Barack Obama plans to send to Congress.</p> Fri, 18 Apr 2014 06:34:47 +0000 Associated Press 50371 at Transportation Secretary Visits Anniston Bus Plant BP: Shore Clean-up after Gulf Oil Spill Ends in La Just days before the fourth anniversary of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster and oil spill, the Coast Guard has moved cleanup of Louisiana's coast to a new phase, allowing BP to end its "active" efforts in the area. Earlier Tuesday, the Coast Guard issued a directive transitioning the cleanup to a phase in which Coast Guard teams, BP cleanup crews and equipment will be pre-positioned to respond to new reports of oil as needed. BP said in a news release that the Coast Guard's directive ended patrols of the final three miles of affected shoreline in Louisiana. Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:18:04 +0000 Associated Press 50262 at BP: Shore Clean-up after Gulf Oil Spill Ends in La Bentley Releases His Tax Return Gov. Robert Bentley's tax return shows he's still not receiving any income from being governor, but he and his wife reported an adjusted gross income of nearly $373,000 for 2013. About $233,000 of that came from Bentley selling his interest in the building where his medical practice was located in Tuscaloosa. Much of the remainder was from IRA distributions and Social Security. The governor and first lady paid more than $81,000 in taxes. They also donated more than $15,000 to charities. Bentley has been releasing his tax returns every year since he ran for governor in 2010. Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:14:59 +0000 Associated Press 50261 at Bentley Releases His Tax Return Democrats to Campaign in Huntsville Most of the Democrats seeking the top offices in Alabama are scheduled to be in Huntsville for a political event Thursday. The event is being called "Hot Dogs and Yellow Dogs." Organizer and host Pam Miles says it will include gubernatorial candidates Parker Griffith and Kevin Bass, lieutenant governor candidate James Fields, attorney general candidate Joe Hubbard, state auditor candidate Miranda Joseph, and agriculture commissioner candidate Doug Smith. Wed, 16 Apr 2014 11:58:28 +0000 Associated Press 50259 at Democrats to Campaign in Huntsville Sarah Palin Coming to Alabama Former Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin is scheduled to be in Alabama next week. Palin will speak at an event organized by the Baldwin County Republican Party on April 25 at the Wharf in Orange Beach. The former Alaska governor last visited Baldwin County on May 3, 2011, when she delivered a speech to the Exceptional Foundation. Palin has pursued a career as a political commentator, public speaker and author since running with John McCain in 2008. Wed, 16 Apr 2014 11:53:33 +0000 Associated Press 50258 at Sarah Palin Coming to Alabama Crowded Field Seeks GOP Nod in 6th District <p>A crowded field of seven candidates is running in the GOP primary for Alabama's 6th Congressional District. The 6th Congressional District is strongly Republican, but political observers say it encompasses a diversity of GOP voices, from a strong business community to active tea party groups. The seat is open after Rep. Spencer Bachus decided not to seek re-election. Gardendale Sen. Scott Beason, Harbert Management Corp. vice president Will Brooke, Homewood Rep. Mon, 14 Apr 2014 14:02:08 +0000 Associated Press 50143 at Crowded Field Seeks GOP Nod in 6th District Judge Rules in Favor of Indian Casinos in Alabama <p>A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by the state which challenged the rights of the Poarch Band of Creek Indians to operate three casinos in <font color="red">Alabama</font>.</p><p>The Montgomery Advertiser <a href="" target="_blank">reports</a> that U.S. District Court Judge Keith Watkins ruled Friday that the state has no authority to prohibit the activity on Indian lands.</p> Mon, 14 Apr 2014 13:59:22 +0000 Associated Press & Montgomery Advertiser 50142 at Judge Rules in Favor of Indian Casinos in Alabama Group asks Supreme Court to Consider Ala. Tax Case <p>Attorneys for a group of poor <font color="red">Alabama</font> schoolchildren and their parents are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to considering scrapping <font color="red">Alabama's</font> property tax system.</p><p>The group maintains in a petition filed with the court that <font color="red">Alabama's</font> property tax system is unfair to minority students.</p> Mon, 14 Apr 2014 13:37:37 +0000 Associated Press 50141 at Group asks Supreme Court to Consider Ala. Tax Case Alabama Legislature Ends Session The Alabama Legislature's 2014 session has come to a close. The House and Senate wrapped up their session about 7:30 p.m. Thursday after passing the state education budget. Numerous bills died on the last night, including one rewriting Alabama's open meetings law and another keeping secret the companies that supply drugs for lethal injections. Other dead bills included legislation protecting spay-neuter clinics and one banning abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected. The session ended earlier than normal. Fri, 04 Apr 2014 02:35:37 +0000 Associated Press 49596 at Alabama Legislature Ends Session Mom Intervenes in Suit Over Same-Sex Marriage The mother of an accident victim is now involved in a federal lawsuit filed by his same-sex partner, who is trying to overturn Alabama's ban on gay marriage. A federal judge in Montgomery says Pat Fancher can intervene in a lawsuit filed after the death of 53-year-old David Fancher. Fancher's longtime partner, Paul Hard, sued in December. Fri, 04 Apr 2014 02:33:13 +0000 Associated Press 49595 at Mom Intervenes in Suit Over Same-Sex Marriage Lawmakers Approve Welfare Changes The Alabama Legislature has passed a bill requiring people to apply for three jobs before seeking welfare benefits. The Senate voted 28-1 Thursday to go along with changes the House made in the bill, sponsored by Republican Sen. Arthur Orr of Decatur. The bill applies to applications for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, commonly called welfare. It not only requires applicants to apply for three jobs, but to keep applying for jobs once they receive benefits. The Senate also gave final approval Thursday to a bill providing new penalties for welfare fraud. Fri, 04 Apr 2014 02:28:36 +0000 Associated Press 49594 at Lawmakers Approve Welfare Changes Weekend Events Push Health Care Signups Programs are being planned across Alabama this weekend to help people sign up for health insurance through the federally operated marketplace before Monday's night deadline. Alabama Arise says enrollment events are being held Saturday at St. Stephens AME Church and the Moorer Public Library in Mobile, as well as at Medical Outreach Ministries in Montgomery. The student-led group Bama Covered is planning an event Sunday afternoon in Railroad Park in Birmingham. Mayor William Bell and U.S. Rep. Sat, 29 Mar 2014 20:40:20 +0000 Associated Press 49281 at Weekend Events Push Health Care Signups