A new report says Alabama's HIV and AIDS rate has dropped slightly, but its rates of chlamydia and gonorrhea have gone up.
The report from the Center for Demographic Research at Auburn University at Montgomery says there were 12.27 people per 100,000 diagnosed with HIV/AIDS in 2012. That's down from 13.75 in 2011. A similar decline occurred with the diagnosis of syphilis, which went from 15.55 per 100,000 people in 2011 to 14.85 in 2012.
Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox spoke at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government today about the city's response to the April 27, 2011 tornado. I sat down with the Mayor just before he headed to the Boston area. Maddox says no disaster plan could have covered every challenge Tuscaloosa faced that day...
An annual Gulf Shores music festival provides a big boost to the region's economy. That's according to an Auburn University study presented Monday at a Gulf Shores City Council meeting.
The study found that the three-day music festival generated about $31 million to the local economy in businesses related to lodging, food and entertainment. Professor Keivan Deravi oversaw the study. Deravi says researchers interviewed business owners and reviewed previous studies and statistics related to the festival.
Traffic fatalities on Alabama highways increased significantly during the long Thanksgiving holiday period.
Alabama State Troopers report they investigated eight crashes with 11 fatalities. That compared with five deaths during the same holiday period last year.
The fatal crashes occurred in Russell, Madison, Crenshaw, Walker, Autauga, Barbour, Pickens and Talladega counties. Troopers said preliminary investigations indicate alcohol was a factor in at least three deadly crashes, and seven of the 11 victims were not using seat belts.
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - A group of Birmingham-area residents are appealing a judge's recent decision to approve a plan that would allow Jefferson County to exit its historic bankruptcy.
AL.com reports that attorney Calvin Grigsby filed a notice of appeal Sunday night in federal bankruptcy court. Grigsby is representing a group of 13 people, including local politicians, who say the county's plan will translate to higher sewer rates over time.
ATHENS, Ala. (AP) — City leaders in Athens are looking for ways to attack blight downtown and are leaning on owners of the buildings to show they're making progress. The Decatur Daily reports that the city has been trying to eliminate dilapidated structures by forcing owners to fix them or removing the problem and billing the owners. Laurie McGuire bought five empty stores downtown about five years ago, during the economic downturn. She used a grant to fund storefront improvements but hasn't had the funds to continue the work until she recently got a loan.
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) — Students at Harvard University are getting a lesson about the Alabama tornado outbreak of 2011. Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox will speak at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government on Wednesday. Maddox will discuss the city's response to the massive EF-4 twister that hit the city on April 27, 2011. The tornado killed more than 50 people and destroyed or damaged thousands of structures, but Maddox received generally positive reviews for his handling of the disaster. He was re-elected earlier this year.
The Crimson Tide fall to 11-1 and likely puts them in line for a berth in the Sugar Bowl. Auburn managed to top its "Immaculate Deflection" victory of two weeks ago while destroying Alabama's shot at a third consecutive national championship. Chris Davis returned a missed field goal over 100 yards for a touchdown on the final play to give the fourth-ranked Tigers a 34-28 thriller against the No. 1 Crimson Tide. Davis caught Adam Griffith's 57-yard attempt near the back of the end zone, then sprinted up the left side before cutting right with nothing but teammates surrounding him.
MOBILE, Ala. (AP) — Mobile's new mayor is heading to Germany to meet with Airbus representatives about the company's upcoming assembly plant in the port city. Mayor Sandy Stimpson is among the local and state leaders traveling to Hamburg, Germany, for Aviation Forum 2013. Stimpson will tour an Airbus factory and meet with top European executives for an update on its progress with the $600 million manufacturing plant in Mobile. Stimpson says the trip is a chance to showcase Mobile before Airbus partners and suppliers. The group departs Sunday and will return on Thursday.
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — A state lawmaker has pre-filed a bill to remove the state Department of Education from the licensure and regulation processes for private schools. The Montgomery Advertiser reported Thursday that proposed legislation from Republican state Sen. Dick Brewbaker, of Montgomery, would also remove a state requirement asking that the schools carry a surety bond of at least $10,000. The proposed legislation would also shift the regulation of technical and professional schools to the Department of Postsecondary Education.
Between now and Monday, fans of Christopher Columbus can get a taste of what life was like during his 1492 voyage of discovery to the New World. Replicas of two of his vessels, the "Nina" and the "Pinta" are docked along the Tennessee/Tombigbee River in Demopolis. I spoke with Captain Morgan Sanger who was aboard the Pinta.
Morgan Sanger—“Well, it’s an educational exhibit we’ve been doing for twenty years now, and we go to school groups, and families—showing them what life was like five hundred years ago, and how good they have it now.”