Associated Press

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Three city council members who voted against new tax increase measures in Florence say they want to examine the city’s spending before considering any higher taxes.

A plan to increase the sales tax in Florence by one penny and to increase lodging taxes by 3 percent failed last week on a 3 to 3 vote. Florence Mayor Steve Holt tells the Florence Times-Daily he thought the plan, which would have increased city revenue by nearly $10 million a year, was going to pass.

 

Doug Jones' campaign issued a Monday statement about the accusations of sexual misconduct being made against Moore. Jones' campaign is applauding what it calls "the courage" of Moore's accusers. And it says Moore will be held accountable "by the people of Alabama for his actions."

A shopper in Alabama who tripped and broke his hip while buying a watermelon at a Walmart has won a $7.5 million verdict against the retailer.

Henry Walker of Phenix City, Alabama was awarded the damages earlier this week after a jury trial. Walker had sued Walmart, saying his foot got trapped in a pallet beneath the watermelons as he reached for one at the Phenix City Walmart in June 2015.

Alabama is now offering veterans free admission to any of its state parks. 

A news release says the Parks for Patriots program began November first. It provides veterans with free admission to any state park facility that charges, including the Gulf State Park fishing pier and boat ramps.

State Parks Director Greg Lein says the system has provided free admission to veterans on Veterans Day for years. He says expanding that access year-round is a way to say thanks to people who have made freedom possible.

encyclopediaofalabama.org

A historic site in central Alabama is marking its 300th anniversary. 

Events are planned all day Saturday at Fort Toulouse, which is located on the Coosa River near Wetumpka. The fort was the easternmost outpost of the French colony of Louisiana when it was established in 1717.

The celebration will include the unveiling of markers to outline part of the original fort. There will also be a short presentation re-enacting the first meeting between the French and Indians who were native to the region.

Two Alabama Theater signs
Birmingham Landmarks Inc.

An iconic theater in central Alabama has won a grant to install a replica of a vintage sign that has been missing since the 1950s.

Al.com reports Birmingham’s Alabama Theater was one of 11 winning sites in an online contest sponsored by American Express and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The theater’s owner, Birmingham Landmarks Incorporated, will use the grant funding to help with costs for the 60-foot “Alabama” sign above the double doors leading to the stage entrance on 18th Street.

A regional airport in Alabama’s capital will soon begin offering direct flights to the nation’s capital.

The Montgomery Advertiser reports American Airlines service from Montgomery Regional Airport to Reagan National Airport in Washington, D.C. is set to begin June 7, 2018. One flight will arrive in the morning in Montgomery, and another will depart for Washington in the afternoon.

Encyclopedia of Alabama

    An obituary says the Gadsden resident died Monday at the age of 99. No cause of death is listed. 

 Martin helped build the modern Republican Party in Alabama. He became the first Republican elected to the U.S. House from Alabama in seven decades in 1964 and served one term.

One of the country’s largest railroad companies is suing an Alabama business over millions of defective railroad ties.

Norfolk Southern says it will have to replace more than 4.7 million railroad ties because they weren’t properly manufactured with protective coating and are degrading much faster than expected.

The University of Alabama at Birmingham will build a $33.9 million freestanding emergency department and medical office next month. 

Al.com reports that UAB will break ground on the new facility on Novvember 2nd in Gardendale. The medical center says the facility will be on 6.2 acres (2 hectares) and will give residents access to essential medical services.

A city in northeast Alabama has approved a $12.5 million riverfront development work at Coosa Landing. 

The property will span 50,000-square feet with 20,000 square feet of retail space, The Gadsden Times reported . The overall plan calls for upgraded roads that tie into the boat ramp and riverwalk at Coosa.

Jefferson County’s suspended District Attorney has been found guilty of first-degree perjury.

Last night, the state of Alabama put a man to death who was convicted of murdering a police officer and also in the process of suing the state over its lethal injection methods.

Alabama’s Department of Corrections is scheduled to execute 40-year-old Torrey Twane McNabb this evening. But as of now, a stay on that execution remains in place.

Yesterday, the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the stay to allow for additional proceedings in McNabb’s lawsuit. He and other Alabama death row inmates are challenging the constitutionality of the state’s lethal injection protocol. Specifically, they argue the sedative midazolam can be ineffective, and might not render them unconscious before other drugs stop their lungs and heart.

Torrey McNabb
ADOC

The state of Alabama is once against petitioning a federal appellate court to allow an execution to proceed – this time for a death row inmate convicted of killing a police officer two decades ago.

Earlier this week, Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall’s office asked the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to overturn a stay issued by a federal judge in the case. State attorneys argue there is no reason to block the execution of 40-year-old Torrey Twane McNabb, scheduled for tomorrow.

Supporters are pushing for new historic markers to recognize two pioneering black Congressmen from north Alabama.

The TimesDaily reports the proposed markers in Florence would honor James Rapier and Oscar De Priest. Rapier was born a free man in 1837, educated in Canada, and returned to Alabama shortly after the Civil War. He served one term in U.S. Congress from Alabama as a Republican during Reconstruction.

The Alabama Ethics Commission has found probable cause that a state district court judge in Cullman County has violated the state’s ethics law.

Ethics Commission Executive Director Tom Albritton says Cullman County District Court Judge Kim Chaney appointed his son, who is an attorney, to criminal cases in the district. The state ethics code says, in part, that public officials cannot use their offices to benefit themselves or family members.

Albritton says the commission is referring the matter to Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall’s office.

1 Dexter Avenue
Chris Pruitt / Wikimedia

U.S. Senate candidate and former Alabama chief justice Roy Moore is facing additional scrutiny over personal compensation from the legal charity he founded.

Property records show the Foundation for Moral Law gave Moore a nearly $400,000 promissory note and mortgage on the group’s historic building in downtown Montgomery. The board of the foundation says the arrangement was to make up for unpaid salary promised to Moore as the organization’s president. That financial stake in the building was later boosted twice and now sits at $540,000.

Once again, the state of Alabama has the most improved advanced placement scores in the country.

Al.com reports Alabama has had the highest percentage of growth in national qualifying scores for AP classes in math, science and English of any state in the country for the sixth year in a row. Alabama has also seen the highest growth in participation in AP classes from 2008 to this year.

Those numbers were announced late last week at Russellville High School in northwest Alabama.

Governor Kay Ivey has issued a state of emergency for Alabama ahead of Tropical Storm Nate.

Nate is expected to reach the northern Gulf Coast over the weekend as a hurricane when it makes landfall Sunday morning somewhere between southeast Louisiana and the Florida peninsula. In Alabama, meteorologists predict winds of 75 miles per hour and gusts of up to 90 miles per hour near the coast. Sustained winds of 45 miles per hour with gusts up to 60 miles per hour are forecast as far north as Birmingham and Gadsden.

A federal judge has halted the execution of an Alabama inmate just hours before he was to be put to death.Chief U.S. District Judge Keith Watkins on Thursday stayed the execution of 56-year-old Jeffery Lynn  Borden. 

The reprieve came about four hours before Borden was set to be given a lethal injection at a southwest Alabama prison.

Alabama’s Attorney General Steve Marshall has filed lawsuits against several casinos in Alabama, saying they are operating illegal slot machines under the guise of electronic bingo.

Yesterday, Marshall’s office filed lawsuits in five counties seeking to shut down the electronic bingo operations. Marshall says the Alabama Supreme Court has made abundantly clear that the machines are illegal.

Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox is running for governor.

Maddox made the announcement this morning morning with the release of a video on social media.

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled Alabama can proceed with the execution of a man convicted of killing his estranged wife and father-in-law in 1993.   

 A divided court on Wednesday overturned a stay issued by the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Jeffery Lynn Borden is scheduled to receive a lethal injection Thursday at a south Alabama prison.

ballotpedia.org

Alabama legislator Jim Patterson of Meridianville has died.    Alabama House Speaker Mac McCutcheon said Patterson died Monday of a heart attack. He was 67.    Patterson, a Republican, was first elected to the Alabama Legislature in 2010.    

 Patterson is survived by his wife, Susan Carter Patterson, and their children. According to his legislative biography, Patterson served in the United States Army from 1972 until 1976 and then served another six years in the Army Reserves. He retired after 29 years as a pharmaceutical representative.

The University of Alabama will soon be building a new high-tech cybersecurity lab in order to conduct research on business data intelligence, thanks to a $5 million donation.

Auburn University is proposing an undergraduate degree in sustainability.

Trustees this month approved a new program in sustainable biomaterials and packaging. Officials plan to open enrollment next fall if the plan is approved by the Alabama Commissioner on Higher Education.

A statement from the school says the program would be one of the first of 

  its kind in the Southeast. It would prepare students for careers in the new bio-based industry that's coming up with alternatives to petroleum-based products.

cdc.gov

Alabama will crackdown on E. coli bacteria in rivers with revised standards.   

Wastewater treatment facilities in the state will face tighter limits from the new standards, which were approved by the Alabama Environmental Management Commission, Al.com reported. The existing five-year permits are valid until they expire, but all new or renewed permits issued by the Alabama Department of Environmental Management going forward will include the new standards.

Easterling Correctional Facility
ADOC

Three inmates have been stabbed in two separate incidents at an Alabama state prison.

Officials with the Alabama Department of Corrections say both incidents were reported Friday at the Easterling Correctional Facility in Clio, Alabama. Reports indicate two inmates were stabbed with a makeshift knife during a fight that broke out in the early afternoon. Additional charges are currently pending against 24-year-old Chandler Boone, who is serving a 50-year sentence for a 2013 murder conviction. The wounded inmates are currently in stable condition.

Tomorrow is the Republican runoff election between sitting U.S. Senator Luther Strange and former Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore, and the White House is suggesting it won’t really be that big a defeat if their candidate loses.

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