Alex AuBuchon

News Host / Reporter

Alex AuBuchon is APR’s Morning Edition host and also writes news and feature stories. He got his start in nonprofit radio at the University of Tennessee’s venerable WUTK-FM.

AuBuchon started as a student DJ before quickly falling in with the news team. He spent a semester on the news staff and then a year as News Director, delivering live newscasts and teaching broadcast workshops to undergraduate journalism students.

AuBuchon then switched over to commercial radio, taking a job as Operations Manager and Assistant News Director for a group of four radio stations in his hometown of Paris, Tennessee. He scheduled traffic and automation breaks and did administrative work for four stations during the week, and delivered newscasts and maintained a popular news website on the weekends.

Alex crossed back over to public radio in January 2015, moving to Alabama to wake up early and give listeners the news they need to get ready for the day.

Alabama became the 37th state to legalize same-sex marriage yesterday.

Couples throughout Alabama have been applying for – and receiving – marriage licenses. But some judges are refusing to issue same-sex marriage licenses, despite the threat of steep penalties.

Meredith Bagley and Alexandrea Davenport, both faculty at the University of Alabama, were married in Vermont five years ago, but they wanted to get an Alabama marriage license now that same-sex marriage is legal.

But when they went in to apply at the Tuscaloosa County Courthouse yesterday morning?

Same-sex marriage is officially legal in Alabama starting today, but Chief Justice Roy Moore is doing everything he can to stand in its way.

Moore issued a letter last night ordering all state probate judges not to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. He argues that the federal district court’s ruling does not trump state law.

Ben Cooper is the chairman of Equality Alabama, a volunteer organization defending LGBTQ rights in Alabama. We spoke with Cooper before the law took effect, and he said some of these challenges were expected.

Gay marriage is set to be legalized in Alabama Monday. All that’s left is for U.S. District Judge Callie Granade to lift the stay she imposed last month. At that point, same-sex couples all across the state will be free to apply for marriage licenses. That's despite a robust appeal attempt by the State of Alabama and its Attorney General, Luther Strange.

“Alabama has a law defining marriage as between a man and a woman. It’s my job as Attorney General to defend the laws of the state, so that’s what we’re doing in courts across the state.”

Montgomery citizens with unpaid traffic tickets may be getting a reprieve.

The Montgomery County District Court recently announced it will offer amnesty to those wanted for arrest in relation to traffic tickets over 90 days unpaid.

To be eligible, citizens must have a 90-day old unpaid traffic ticket and be wanted for arrest. Under the new program, those that pay half of the outstanding balance on the ticket will have their arrest warrant cancelled. Participants will then have six weeks to pay off the remainder of the balance.

Gay marriage is set to be legalized in Alabama on Monday, barring a last-minute stay from the U.S. Supreme Court.

Same-sex couples throughout the state are expected to seek marriage licenses Monday once U.S. District Court Judge Callie Granade lifts the stay on her order declaring Alabama's same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional.

Alabama has appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court to extend the stay on Granade's order, but as of Saturday the court had not responded to the state's request.

The University of Alabama is looking to expand its relations with Cuba.

University trustees recently approved establishing a Center for Cuba Collaboration and Scholarship at the Tuscaloosa campus. The Center will build on work by the Alabama-Cuba Initiative, a program that has built educational ties between the University of Alabama and Cuba for the past 13 years. More than 80 articles and other scholarly works have been published by faculty involved in that initiative.

Prosecutors continue to trade barbs with House Speaker Mike Hubbard over details connected to his ethics case.

Hubbard's defense is working to force prosecutors to release conversations with legislators and the media. The Attorney General’s office is objecting to that tactic and they made their displeasure known through court filings. Prosecutors say Hubbard is seeking a fishing expedition in search of any information in to a claim of prosecutorial misconduct.

The 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals all but ensured gay marriage in Alabama yesterday.

The court announced that they will not act on any appeals until the U.S. Supreme Court rules on same-sex marriage nationally.

In Alabama, that means judges can begin issuing same-sex marriage licenses on Monday, assuming the U.S. Supreme Court doesn't issue a stay before then.

Tuscaloosa is competing with nearly 70 other communities for part of a half-billion dollar grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

City officials and residents gathered inside the Rosedale Court Apartment complex yesterday to identify what they see as important points. Members of the recovery operations for Tuscaloosa asked people about resiliency, at-risk populations and overall impacts that could lead to the city winning part of the grant.

Tuscaloosa City Councilor Harrison Taylor says it is all about being prepared.

The former CEO of two non-profit Alabama health clinics was arrested yesterday on federal charges.

The Birmingham U.S. Attorney's Office says Jonathan Wade Dunning was arrested on multiple counts of fraud, conspiracy, money-laundering and other charges.

Dunning was at one time CEO of both Birmingham Health Care and Central Alabama Comprehensive Health in Tuskegee. Prosecutors say Dunning left those clinics to run a private business, and are accusing him of funneling substantial amounts of government money from the non-profit health operations into his own company.

Teachers and residents in Huntsville will get a chance to speak out today on plans to end a 51-year-old desegregation lawsuit.

All sides will gather at Columbia High School to discuss a federal consent order that’s supposed to ensure fair treatment for all Huntsville City school students. A federal judge mediated the agreement last June. It’s meant to resolve the remaining issues from both sides of the desegregation case.

The Alabama Prison Reform Task Force is currently considering a slate of recommendations from the Council of State Governments to address Alabama's poorly performing prisons.

Some of their suggestions include hiring more probation officers and creating a new, lesser felony class for low-level offenses.

The Task Force estimates that proposed changes should reduce Alabama's prison population from 200% capacity down to 162% by 2021.

The Alabama Probate Judges Association has dramatically reversed course in the fight for marriage equality in Alabama.

That judges' group now says gay couples may apply for and be given marriage licenses once the hold is removed from a federal order overturning Alabama's ban on same-sex marriage. The Probate Judges Assocation was previously encouraging Alabama's probate justices to deny marriage licenses for same-sex couples as long as possible.

This week is National School Choice Week. Supporters of classroom options will be joined by Civil Rights leaders for a rally in Montgomery today which more than two thousand people are expected to attend.

Marchers are demanding law makers protect and expand K-through-12 educational choices for children and familes. Sonya DiCarlo is the Director of Communications for the Alabama Opportunity Scholarship Fund. She says children are not all the same.

Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange is wasting no time in appealing after a federal judge overturned Alabama's ban on same-sex marriage. The attorney general's office filed notice yesterday with the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals challenging U.S. District Judge Callie Granade's ruling. Granade ruled Friday that Alabama's bans on same-sex marriage are unconstitutional. She put her decision on hold for two weeks to allow state attorneys time to appeal.

Alabama's ban against same sex marriage is still effect, at least for now. U.S. District Court Judge Callie V.S. Granade is putting her own ruling on hold for fourteen days.

The judge originally ruled Alabama's ban unconstitutional. Now, she is waiting two weeks to allow Alabama state attorneys time to appeal her decision. If the 11th US Circuit Court of Appeals doesn't decide to extend that stay, same-sex marriages will be legal in Alabama on February 9th.

Alabama is still buzzing over the news that Birmingham will be the host city for the 2021 World games. The first task in preparing to host the games will be to watch how Poland does it.

Wroclaw, Poland will be hosting the 2017 games and Alabama be taking notes on how that city handles it. Over four thousand athletes from one hundred countries usually take part.

Lawyers for House Speaker Mike Hubbard are now asking prosecutors to disclose any conversations they had with legislators. They are also looking for conversations with members of the executive branch about the case.

Defense lawyers filed a discovery motion Wednesday asking a judge to force prosecutors to disclose any calls with legislators or executive branch members. They also asked for any copies of conversations that might have been recorded.

Hubbard's lawyers had already asked prosecutors to disclose any media calls.

It’s tax season and university students across the state are rolling up their sleeves to help taxpayers manage all the paperwork.

The group Impact Alabama has opened help centers to assist families with children who earn fifty two thousand dollars a year or less. Families without children to make less than twenty thousand dollars also qualify for assistance.

Sarah Louise Smith is the Executive Director of Impact Alabama. She says families get tax tips and the student volunteers gain experience working with customers.

The phrases "Internal Revenue Service" and "free of charge" may not seem to go together. But the people who collect your income taxes every year are offering a new system that’s available at no cost.

The FreeFile internet program is free for taxpayers who earn less than $60,000 per year. The system keeps track of your information and calculations as you fill out your tax forms and tells you if you make a mistake.

Today is the day the nation observes the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

With the incidents in Ferguson, Mo., New York City and the recent release of the film Selma, civil rights are once again at the forefront of people's minds.

Doug Shipman is the CEO of the National Center for Civil and Human Rights in Atlanta. He believes if Dr. King were still alive, he would be still be working towards his goal of equality.

If you’ve been craving your girl scout cookie fix, then today is your day. Girl scouts start taking orders today for the annual fundraising drive by the Girl Scouts of America.

Familiar flavors like thin mints, Savannahs, and Do-See-Does will be joined by gluten free varieties. Those new products are called Toffee-Tastics and Trios.

Hannah Wallace is the Director of Communications and Marketing for the Girl Scouts of North Central Alabama. She says customers can send cookies to U.S. soldiers overseas with a program called Operation Cookie Drop.

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Alabama’s Unmanned Aerial System Task Force is submitting a report to Governor Bentley today. That report will lay the groundwork for regulating unmanned aerial drones throughout the state.

Alabama Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries John McMillan heads that task force. He said the privacy of Alabama’s citizens was a great concern when drafting the report, but compared UAVs to another hot-button privacy topic.

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