Associated Press

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Former U.S. Rep. Parker Griffith of Huntsville is running for governor as a Democrat. Griffith turned in his qualifying papers at state party headquarters in Montgomery shortly before the deadline on Friday. Griffith served as a Democrat in the Alabama Senate and then was elected to Congress to represent part of north Alabama. After his election he switched to the Republican Party and lost a GOP primary bid to Mo Brooks, who now represents the 5th District. Griffith recently rejoined the Democratic Party.

A summary of action in the Alabama Legislature on Thursday, the 11th meeting day of the regular session:


—Approved a bill to give deployed military members extra time to renew their vehicle registration. Goes to Senate.

— Approved a bill to specify that write-in votes will only be counted if there are enough votes to impact the race, or if there is a request. Goes to Senate.


Roy Moore

Known for fighting to display the Ten Commandments in his state's judicial building, Alabama's chief justice is jumping into the national gay marriage debate. Roy Moore has sent letters to all 50 governors urging them to get their legislatures to call for a convention to add an amendment to the U.S. Constitution recognizing only unions between one man and one woman. Moore says the country's moral foundation is under attack, and a state-initiated convention under Article V of the Constitution is the only way to stop it. An Article V convention has never been held.

The Univeristy of Central Florida /

An administrator from the University of Central Florida has been named president of the University of South Alabama in Mobile. Trustees unanimously selected Tony G. Waldrop as president during a meeting Thursday. Waldrop is provost and executive vice president at Central Florida, which is located in Orlando. He also held administrative positions at the University of North Carolina and the University of Illinois. At South Alabama, Waldrop replaces the late Gordon Moulton, who retired last July 1 and died in September.

The Associated Press

A summary of action in the Alabama Legislature on Wednesday, a committee meeting day:


—Senate Finance and Taxation-General Fund Committee approved a bill to give a one-time pension bonus to retired state employees. Goes to Senate.

—Senate Finance and Taxation-General Fund Committee approved a House-passed bill to provide an income tax credit to Alabama families that adopt children in Alabama. Goes to Senate.

Alabama House of Representatives /

Tomorrow’s filing deadline for political candidates is prompting several Democrats to announce their intentions.  House minority leader Craig Ford of Gadsden says he’ll run for re-election rather than seeking higher office.  He had been considering a run for Governor or Lieutenant Governor but says he can do more from the state legislature. 

Meanwhile, Florence Democrat Tammy Irons says she will NOT be seeking re-election.  The Republican majority redrew her district significantly.  She says her expanded district could mean she’d have less time with her family and law practice.

A summary of action in the Alabama legislature on Tuesday, the 10th meeting day of the regular session:


—Approved a bill to end the requirement to publish lists of registered voters in newspapers and instead publish the list on the county's website. Goes to Senate.

—Approved a bill to authorize warrantless arrests under certain conditions for trespassing on the property of an education insitution. Goes to Senate.

Anthony "Alann" Johnson is leading the race to become the Democratic nominee for House District 53 in Birmingham. reports that Johnson pulled away from attorney Arthur Shores Lee as the final boxes were counted in the Democratic runoff.

With 23 of 24 precincts reporting Tuesday night, Johnson had 297 votes, or 56 percent of the vote, to Lee's 236 votes, or 44 percent.

Republican Margie Wilcox has easily won the Alabama House District 104 special general election in Mobile County. Unofficial election returns show Wilcox defeated Democrat Stephen Carr with 2,931 votes, or 91 percent, to 307 votes, or 9 percent. The district in western Mobile County leans heavily Republican. Wilcox is the owner of Yellow Cab of Mobile. She will take her seat in the Alabama Legislature later this week. The seat was vacant after Rep. Jim Barton resigned in August to join a Montgomery lobbying firm.

The former chairman of the Elmore County Republican Executive Committee, Mike Holmes, has won the Republican runoff in Alabama House District 31 and will be joining the Legislature. Holmes pulled 2,028 votes, or 57 percent, in the special election Tuesday against Wetumpka car dealer Jimmy Collier, who got 1,550 votes, or 43 percent. The winner faced no Democratic opposition in the heavily Republican district, which covers parts of Elmore and Coosa counties in central Alabama.


Voters in four Alabama counties are going to the polls to fill three vacancies in the Alabama House of Representatives. House District 31 in Elmore and Coosa counties is having a Republican runoff between Mike Holmes and Jimmy Collier. The winner has no Democratic opposition. Voters in part of Jefferson County are choosing between Anthony "Alan" Johnson and Arthur Shores Lee in the Democratic runoff for House District 53. The winner faces Republican Willie "W.A." Casey in March.

The Associated Press

Alabama legislators are returning to Montgomery after last week's meeting schedule got interrupted by the winter storm. Both the Senate and the House get back to work Tuesday afternoon. Alabama Senate leaders hope to vote on a proposal to ban legislators from becoming lobbyists for two years after they leave office. A loophole in current law allows lawmakers to resign and immediately lobby the chamber opposite where they served. Some Republicans are pushing the bill after several GOP lawmakers resigned last year.

Republican Sen. Scott Beason of Gardendale won't seek another term in the Alabama Legislature. Beason issued a statement Friday saying it's time to end his time at the Statehouse. He was first elected to the Alabama Legislature in 1998. Beason was behind Alabama's sweeping immigration bill, considered the toughest in the nation before it was largely gutted by the courts. The lawmaker also the sponsor of Alabama gun legislation last year. The bill pitted the National Rifle Association against business groups over the issue of guns in workplace parking lots.

An Alabama gay and lesbian advocacy organization and the state association of realtors are blasting an Alabama congressman for making statements they consider inappropriate and offensive.

Boosted by a drop in the city's murder rate and an endorsement from President Barack Obama, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu won a landslide victory Saturday in his bid for a second term.

"The results tonight confirm what we hoped was true four years ago: that the people of this great city are ready to move forward," Landrieu told is supporters in a victory speech.

Landrieu had 64 percent of the vote with all precincts reporting in Saturday's election.


Gov. Robert Bentley says people shouldn't be playing the blame game for the epic ice storm that caught Birmingham off guard, stranding motorists on interstates and students in schools. Bentley said Thursday schools and emergency officials made plans off forecasts that predicted the worst of the weather would hit about 100 miles south of Alabama's largest city. The state moved resources south to prepare for snow in Montgomery and ice in lower Alabama. The governor says there was little warning before the swift-moving storm slapped Jefferson and Shelby counties.

Associated Press

Thousands of Alabama school kids are getting another day off from class because of the winter storm.

School systems throughout central Alabama are taking Friday off because of lingering icy spots on roads. That includes all schools around Birmingham, the state's most populous area.

Much of the snow and ice melted Thursday as temperatures rose above freezing. But many county roads and side streets still have slick spots, and freezing temperatures overnight made them worse.

A Selma City Council member is proposing a temporary ban on new businesses that sell alcohol. Councilman Cecil Williamson says the west Alabama city doesn't need any more of what he calls "liquor establishments." So Williamson is proposing a six-month moratorium on city licenses for some new businesses. The Selma Times-Journal ( ) reports the ban could include liquor stores, bars and convenience stores. Williamson says he wants to research the number of such businesses that other, similarly sized cities have.

The University of Alabama at Birmingham is opening a new medical program in Montgomery. The UAB Montgomery Regional Medical Campus opens Tuesday at Baptist Medical Center South in Montgomery. The center will train medical students in areas including family medicine, surgery and pediatrics. Six third-year medical students will be accepted starting in May, and more will arrive next year. The Montgomery campus joins existing regional campuses in Tuscaloosa and Huntsville, plus the main UAB campus in Birmingham.

Associated Press

A winter storm could bring more than 2 inches of snow and sleet to parts of central Alabama early this week. The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm watch for much of central and southern Alabama starting Tuesday morning. Forecasters say areas likely to see the most accumulation are those south of Interstate 85 and U.S. 80. The Weather Service says more than 2 inches of snow and sleet are possible in cities including Montgomery, Auburn, Tuskegee and Selma. The heaviest snowfall is expected from noon Tuesday to 3 a.m. Wednesday.

The Associated Press

A potential propane gas shortage linked to recent severe winter weather has prompted Alabama Governor Robert Bentley to declare a state of emergency.

Bentley said Thursday that declaring a state of emergency "will help Alabamians have an uninterrupted supply of propane gas and other home heating fuels during this period of winter weather."

The Associated Press

A summary of action in the Alabama Legislature on Thursday, the sixth meeting day of the regular session: HOUSE: —Approved a bill to end the Alabama Health Insurance Program for high-risk people who have trouble getting health insurance because the new federal health care law provides coverage. Goes to Senate. —Approved a bill to create the Fair Ballot Commission, which would issue statements on what would happen if people vote for or against a proposed constitutional amendment. Goes to Senate.

The Alabama House has approved a bill to give adoptive parents a $1,000 tax credit to make it financially feasible for more people to adopt. The House approved the bill 72-23 Wednesday, and it now goes to the Senate for consideration. The bill's sponsor, Republican Rep. Paul Lee of Dothan, is an adoptive parent. He says the income tax credit would apply to a private intrastate adoption and the adoption of an Alabama foster child where both the birth mother and the adoptive parents are from Alabama.

The state representative who sponsored the Alabama Accountability Act has decided not to run again for the Legislature. Republican Rep. Chad Fincher of Semmes announced Wednesday that he will not seek a third term this year. Fincher told that he will focus on his new role as executive director of the Mobile Area Association of Realtors, which he began in November. Last year, Fincher sponsored the Alabama Accountability Act, which gave tax credits to parents who move their children from failing public schools to private schools.

A summary of action in the Alabama Legislature on Wednesday, the fifth meeting day of the regular session:


—Approved a $1,000 tax credit for Alabamians who adopt a child from Alabama. Goes to Senate.

—Approved a bill clarifying that the state's sovereign immunity from lawsuits applies to teachers and state employees when they are carrying out their official duties. Goes to Senate.


—Approved the governor's appointees to some state boards.

Associated Press

Tuskegee Mayor Johnny Ford says he's looking at running for higher office to make sure black voters turn out for the November general election. Ford said that he is considering running for the state Senate seat held by Democrat Billy Beasley of Clayton if Beasley runs for governor. If Beasley runs for re-election, Ford says he will consider running for secretary of state. Ford says he's afraid that many black voters will not participate in the general election if there are not black Democrats running for office.

The Associated Press

A summary of action in the Alabama Legislature on Tuesday, the fourth meeting day of the regular session:


—Passed a bill to make it a crime for a state or local tax official to audit a group because of its political views. Goes to Senate.

—Passed a bill to allow health care workers to decline to participate in an abortion, sterilization, cloning or human stem cell research if they have moral, religious or ethical objections. Goes to Senate.


A Georgia-based company is adding 100 jobs on the Alabama coast. Rural Sourcing Inc. of Atlanta says it's opening a new software development center in Mobile. The operation will open on Feb. 1 in a temporary location in downtown Mobile while the company looks for a permanent home in the port city. Rural Sourcing Inc. aims to provide a cost-effective way for companies to develop software in the United States rather than sending the work overseas to countries like China or India. The company already has software centers in Augusta, Ga., and Jonesboro, Ark.

Halliburton Manager to be Sentenced

Jan 21, 2014

A former Halliburton manager faces a possible prison term when a federal judge sentences him for destroying evidence in the aftermath of BP's massive 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Anthony Badalamenti is scheduled to be sentenced on Tuesday by U.S. District Judge Jay Zainey in New Orleans. Badalamenti pleaded guilty in October to one misdemeanor count of destruction of evidence and faces a maximum sentence of 1 year in prison and a $100,000 fine.

Frigid Cold Returns

Jan 21, 2014

Another blast of arctic air is expected to move into the state, bringing temperatures as low as 10 degrees to parts of northern Alabama and high winds across most of the state. By early Friday morning, low temperatures are expected to drop to around 10 degrees in the Florence, Gadsden and Huntsville areas. Temperatures early Friday morning in Birmingham are expected to drop to 15 degrees. High winds are expected to accompany the bitterly cold temperatures. The National Weather Service issued a wind advisory for most of the state.