News

Republican voters in Alabama are heading to the polls once again to set the final tickets ahead of November's general election.

They'll be taking part in several heated Republican runoffs for statewide office and in the race for a U.S. Congressional seat in south Alabama.

Armed with an endorsement from President Donald Trump, U.S. Rep. Martha Roby is trying to stave off a challenge from former congressman Bobby Bright and a voter backlash over her criticism of Trump during his Presidential campaign.

Those in Montgomery today can hear the personal accounts of people who have dedicated their lives to social justice.

The event Storytellers: How I Became Justice Involved is being held tonight by the Middle District of Alabama Federal Defenders Program. It’s scheduled on the birthday of Robin “Rocky” Myers, a death row inmate in Alabama who many believe was wrongly convicted. Advocates are hoping to raise awareness of Myers’s case while also sharing their own work on social justice issues.

The estate of the man at the center of the popular "S-Town" podcast is suing the show's creators. The executor for John B. McLemore’s estate says the producers exploited details of his private life for financial gain. The lawsuit contends McLemore didn't give permission to broadcast the intimate details of his sexual orientation, mental state and other aspects of his life. "S-Town" tells the story of McLemore, an antique clock restorer from the town of Woodstock who killed himself in 2015.

Pet Fire Safety

Jul 14, 2018
Dan4th (Dan4th Nicholas) [Flickr]

One of the best ways to keep your pet safe is to keep your home safe.  And often, one of the best ways to keep your home safe may be to keep your pet from dangerous situations that could cause a fire!

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He calls her a "Swampy Star." She calls him a tiger thief. Alabama Public Service Commission President Twinkle Andress Cavanaugh and State House member Will Ainsworth of Guntersville are swapping accusations ahead of Tuesday's heated GOP runoff in the race for lieutenant governor. Each also claims the other is distorting the truth. Cavanaugh is running an ad targeting Ainsworth's theft arrest when he was a college student and was accused of stealing fiberglass tigers in downtown Auburn. The charges were later dropped.

A Montgomery judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by Attorney General candidate Troy King ahead of Tuesday’s GOP runoff election.

King had sued appointed incumbent Steve Marshall over hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions Marshall has received from the Republican Attorneys General Association.

King argued $735,000 of the contributions Marshall received from the group violated Alabama’s ban on transfers between political action committees, since the association received contribution from other PACs before giving the money to Marshall.

Help Wanted: Alabama's Rural Health Care Crisis

Jul 12, 2018

June 6, 2018 marks fifty years since the death of Robert F. Kennedy. Reporters covering his campaign for the Democratic Presidential nomination established the RFK Journalism Awards, which recognize coverage of the disadvantaged, or victims of social injustice. APR is honored to join the 2018 RFK laureates with our documentary "Help Wanted: Alabama's Rural Health Care Crisis." Pat D.

“I hurt so bad, and I just stayed in bed like, for years I stayed in bed. I couldn’t get out of bed. I couldn’t wait on myself.”

Hyundai Motor Company's labor union says steep auto tariffs could cost U.S. jobs, including here in Alabama.

The labor union at South Korea's largest auto company says if President Donald Trump goes ahead with imposing 25 percent auto tariffs, it will hurt Hyundai's U.S. sales and jeopardize the more than 3,000 jobs at the Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama facility in Montgomery.

Authorities are investigating after a man bled to death after being apprehended by a police dog in Montgomery.

Captain Joe Herman of the State Bureau of Investigation said yesterday that preliminary autopsy reports show a burglary suspect died as the result of a ruptured femoral artery. The incident remains under review.

Montgomery police say a canine unit responded to a report of a burglary in progress early Sunday morning, and the animal apprehended a man inside the home. That man, identified as Joseph Pettaway, died later at a hospital.

Etowah Co. Jail food
Reuters

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey says the state will no longer give jail food funds to "sheriffs personally" in the wake of criticism that some sheriffs pocketed vast sums by skimping on inmates' meals.

In a memo to the state comptroller yesterday, Ivey rescinded the state's 2008 policy of "paying prisoner food service allowances directly to sheriffs in their personal capacities." The directive says the money must now go to government accounts.

lethal injection chamber
EJI

A lawsuit challenging Alabama’s lethal injection process took an unexpected turn yesterday. Eight of the inmate plaintiffs asked to be put to death instead by the state’s newly-approved execution method – inhaling nitrogen gas.

Both the Alabama attorney general's office and lawyers for inmates submitted a joint motion to dismiss the litigation yesterday. Lawyers say the inmates' claims challenging Alabama’s use of midazolam in executions as inhumane are now moot, since their pending executions will now be carried out by use of nitrogen.

In the race for Alabama's Attorney General, challenger Troy King is making a big issue of incumbent Steve Marshall's heavy financial support from the Republican Attorneys General Association.

King filed an ethics complaint yesterday arguing those donations are a "flagrant violation" of the state ban on transfers between political action committees, since the group took money from PACs.

RAGA attorney Charlie Spies calls the complaint a "desperate ploy" based on an "incorrect reading of the law."

data center render
DC BLOX

A technology company based in Atlanta plans to build a new data center at an old steel-making site in downtown Birmingham.

DC BLOX announced yesterday it will use the 27-acre site of a former Trinity Steel plant to locate a facility that could be valued at some $785 million over the next decade.

DC BLOX currently operates large data centers in Atlanta, Huntsville and Chattanooga and maintains a high-speed and high-capacity private fiber optic network to offer cloud computing to businesses.

Alabama Public Radio will be providing "live" coverage of President Trump's announcement of his pick to replace retiring Supreme Court Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy. NPR's Ari Shapiro will be joined by Nina Totenberg, Mara Liasson, and Kelsey Snell. Our coverage will begin at 8 pm tonight.

The Alabama Blues Project is soon to have its own permanent home.

The organization will be relocating to the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center in Tuscaloosa. That facility is also home to the Tuscaloosa Symphony Orchestra and Tuscaloosa Arts Council.

According to the Tuscaloosa News, the Alabama Blues Project has been bouncing from one available space to another over the past two decades. The nonprofit provides blues music programs and lessons for children and adults.

Authorities say dozens of dogs were recently rescued from a reported puppy mill in central Alabama.

Trussville police Lt. Phil Dillon tells AL.com that last week, officers were called to a home where they found numerous dogs both inside and outside living in unsanitary conditions. Dillon says the owners of the home operated a business selling both puppies and parakeets.

anneheathen [Flickr]

Being outside on a sunny summer day may seem like a great idea, but hot humid weather can be dangerous for our furry friends.  Your four-legged companion depends on you to keep it safe and healthy in the sweltering summer heat.

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The state of Alabama is going under the microscope again in terms of civil rights policy.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's civil rights office says it will investigate the Alabama Department of Environmental Management's civil rights policies.

Al.com reports The EPA's External Civil Rights Compliance Office issued a letter earlier this week stating it will investigate whether ADEM has adopted grievance procedures assuring the prompt and fair resolution of complaints. These procedures are required by the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Northport City Hall
WVUA-TV

Less than two months after he took the oath of office, former Northport Mayor Wayne Rose has resigned his appointed position as a representative on the City Council.

The Tuscaloosa News reports Rose was sworn in on May 7 and attended the following council meeting May 21. He was then absent from both meetings in June. Council President Jay Logan announced Rose's resignation on Monday.

Logan says Rose told the council that he had to prioritize spending time with his family and running his Northport lumber yard over his responsibilities as councilor.

Alabama’s commerce secretary says the current rhetoric about tariffs and trade barriers from the White House are hurting investments in Alabama.

Commerce Secretary Greg Canfield recently said an in interview with Bloomberg that state officials aren’t planning to fight President Trump on the issue, but they are urging a “more measured approach” on trade.

Canfield says the state has already seen timelines slip on a couple of large projects, and the longer these trade disputes drag out, the more possible it is that they threaten jobs in Alabama.

One candidate in Alabama’s Lieutenant Governor’s race just got a big name endorsement. Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee is endorsing Twinkle Andress Cavanaugh in the Republican runoff.

Cavanaugh's campaign announced Huckabee's endorsement Monday. Cavanaugh was the state chairwoman of Huckabee's 2008 presidential campaign in Alabama.

Monday is the final day to register to vote in the July 17 primary runoffs. 

A number of Republican primaries, including contests for attorney general and lieutenant governor, will be decided in the runoff.

U.S. Representative Martha Roby faces former congressman Bobby Bright in the GOP runoff for the 2nd congressional district.

Attorney General Steve Marshall faces former Attorney General Troy King in the GOP runoff for attorney general.

If you want to catch a shark, Alabama has the place for you.

The state conservation agency says it's expanding a program to allow shark fishing off the pier at Gulf State Park at Gulf Shores.

The department is setting aside eight dates for overnight shark fishing at the pier starting July 8. While the end of the pier will be closed for only people who are going after sharks, the rest of the pier will remain open as normal.

4th of July Pet Safety

Jun 30, 2018
petfinder.com

We love to include our pets in our celebrations, but this is one time they might be better off at home.  Loud, noisy fireworks are not fun for your furry friend.  Add the summer heat and the dangers in some of the holiday foods, and including your pet might not be the best choice.

Alabama Power says over fifty thousand of its customers are waking up in the dark this morning (as of 8 am) following a line of strong thunderstorms. The system pushed through Alabama downing trees and power lines. WHNT-TV reported that a seventy -year-old woman is in critical condition after being struck by lightning. Lineville Police told reporters they had a fatality, but didn’t provide details. Severe thunderstorm warnings were issued for multiple Alabama counties as the storms, with winds as high as sixty miles per hour, swept through the state.  

Alabama Department of Archives and History

As part of our way of looking at Alabama’s bicentennial we’re taking a looking at each of Alabama’s past capitals. The second capital we’re looking at holds that title with a little controversy.              

In 1809 the town of Twickenham was founded by Leroy Pope near a spring in northeast Alabama. It was named after the town in England, however, that name would not stick…

1811 Twickenham changed the name to Huntsville.

A new study from Tuskegee University may change the way breast cancer is diagnosed in the U.S.

Tuskegee researchers have developed a new test that more accurately determines the specific subtype of breast cancer that needs to be treated. Researchers say this will be particularly helpful for African-American women. Studies show black women are more likely to be diagnosed later in life, and are 40 percent more likely to die from breast cancer after their initial diagnosis than white women.

The National Weather Service has confirmed it was a tornado that tore through a northern Alabama county Friday night, uprooting and destroying a mobile home and leaving two adults and two children with minor injuries.

NWS officials confirmed an EF-2 tornado struck the areas of Jones Chapel and Vinemont in Cullman County around 7 p.m. Friday.

A Real Fat Cat

Jun 23, 2018
Pasadena Humane Society & SPCA [Facebook]

Chubbs, a Himalayan mix estimated to be about 10 years old, was grossly overweight.  His long fur was so matted it seemed to be painful for him, and much of it had to be shaved (or cut) off.  Perhaps he was never brushed, or he was just too large to groom himself.  

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The Alabama based National Association of School Resource Officers is being pressured to withdraw an invitation for U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions to speak. A coalition of progressives in Nevada upset with the Trump administration's immigration policy is urging the group to rethink having Sessions speak at a school safety conference in Reno next week. Leaders of more than a dozen labor unions, women's, religious and minority groups sent a letter Thursday asking the association to rescind its invitation to Sessions because of the administration's stand on immigration.

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