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AEA's Future-Hubbert
11:54 am
Sat September 13, 2014

AEA Board Expresses Support For Mabry

After meeting Friday night, the AEA board expressed confidence in current leadership including Executive Secretary Henry Mabry.
Credit educationnews.org

The Alabama Education Association board of directors met behind closed doors for four hours Friday to discuss concerns raised by its longtime leader.

Former AEA executive secretary Paul Hubbert, in a Tuesday letter to board members, said AEA was in crisis. Hubbert said he was concerned about the association's finances and also the management style of current executive secretary Henry Mabry.

AEA President Anita Gibson said board members had extensive discussions about the issues raised by Hubbert.

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Casino Raid-Trial
11:47 am
Sat September 13, 2014

Casino Seeks To Break AG's Winning Streak

VictoryLand casino is trying to break the attorney general's winning streak in a series of cases involving gambling machines seized in raids.
Credit al.com

 VictoryLand casino is trying to break the attorney general's winning streak in a series of cases involving gambling machines seized in raids.

A four-day trial ended Friday involving the legality of 1,600 gambling machines the attorney general seized from VictoryLand in Macon County last year. Circuit Judge William Shashy will rule in a few weeks.

The outcome will determine whether VictoryLand owner Milton McGregor can reopen what was once Alabama's largest casino or whether the attorney general can destroy the machines.

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Alabama Power-Scam
11:42 am
Sat September 13, 2014

Alabama Power Warns Customers Of New Type Of Scam

Alabama Power Co. is warning its customers to be on the lookout for a new type of scam.
Credit Alabama Power / Wikipedia

  Alabama Power Co. is warning its customers to be on the lookout for a new type of scam.

The company says scammers are sending text messages warning that a payment is due immediately. The text message lists the name of a bill payment company and a reference number to use in paying the bill.

Alabama Power spokesman Ike Pigott says the reference number could belong to anyone and once the money is transferred it is almost impossible to trace.

Pigott says customers with questions about their accounts can call a 24-hour customer service number, 1-800-245-2244.

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Execution Drugs-Alabama
4:27 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Alabama Changes Execution Drug Combination

After adopting the new three drug protocol, the attorney general's office is asking the Alabama Supreme Court to set execution dates for nine death row inmates.
Credit The Birmingham News file

Alabama has adopted a new combination of drugs for executions and is once again seeking to put inmates to death.

The attorney general's office is asking the Alabama Supreme Court to set execution dates for nine death row inmates. Lawyers said the Department of Corrections this week adopted a new three-drug protocol for executions.

Executions in Alabama had come to a halt after Alabama and other states ran out of a key drug used in executions.

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Health Care Funding
4:03 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Feds Say 12 Ala. Health Centers To Get $3.5 Million

Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia M. Burwell announced Friday that the $3,468,448 comes under the Affordable Care Act.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

The federal government says 12 health centers in Alabama will receive nearly $3.5 million in funding to help expand primary care services.

Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia M. Burwell announced Friday that the $3,468,448 comes under the Affordable Care Act.

The agency says the money will help the health centers hire an estimated 45 new staff members, stay open for longer hours and expand the care they provide. Some new services could include oral health, mental and behavioral health, pharmacy and vision services.

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AEA's Future-Hubbert
3:56 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

AEA Board To Meet Friday Night After Criticism

The Alabama Education Association board of directors is set to meet Friday night in the wake of a letter from the retired leader of the group, who says the organization is now in crisis.
Credit Alabama Education Association

The Alabama Education Association board of directors is set to meet Friday night in the wake of a letter from the retired leader of the group, who says the organization is now in.

Hubbert sent a letter this week to the AEA's board, saying the group is in danger of losing its strong membership and financial might that made it a formidable force in Alabama politics.

Hubbert led the AEA for more than 40 years before retiring in 2011 for health reasons.

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AEA's Future
4:02 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

Retired AEA Boss Says Teachers' Group In Crisis

The management style of the Alabama Education Association's executive secretary, Henry Mabry is being called into question by the organization's retired leader.
Credit educationnews.org

The retired leader of the Alabama Education Association says the teachers' organization that he built into a political powerhouse is now in crisis.

Paul Hubbert wrote a letter to the AEA board of directors, saying the organization is in danger of losing its strong membership and financial standing.

Hubbert said AEA has management, financial and organizational problems. Hubbert particularly criticized the organization's dwindling reserve funds and investment in high-risk stocks.

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Siegelman Appeal
3:46 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

11th Circuit Pushes Back Siegelman Appeal

A federal appeals court has delayed former Gov. Don Siegelman's case again.
Credit By Mike Disharoon / Wikimedia Commons

A federal appeals court has delayed Gov. Don Siegelman's case again.

In April, the 11th U.S. Circuit Court Appeals tentatively scheduled Siegelman's case for the week of July 28. Then the court moved it to the week of Oct. 13, and now records show it has been tentatively reset for the week of Dec. 8.

A federal jury in 2006 convicted Siegelman and former HealthSouth CEO Richard Scrushy on bribery and other charges. Prosecutors said Scrushy bribed Siegelman for a spot on a state regulatory board with donations to Siegelman's 1999 lottery campaign.

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Governor's Race-Debate
3:47 pm
Mon September 8, 2014

Debate Unlikely In Alabama Governor's Race

Representatives of Republican incumbent Robert Bentley and Democratic challenger Parker Griffith had been talking about scheduling debates, but those talks failed.
Credit al.com

Alabama voters aren't likely to see debates between Alabama's two candidates for governor.

Representatives of Republican incumbent Robert Bentley and Democratic challenger Parker Griffith had been talking about scheduling debates, but those talks failed.

Bentley says he welcomed a spirited exchange, but Griffith was only interested in negative campaigning and name-calling.

Griffith says Bentley is unmanly and arrogant for not being willing to debate his policies.

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Governor-Security Costs
3:38 pm
Mon September 8, 2014

Governor's Security Officer Makes Lots Of OT

Questions over overtime arise after the head of Gov. Robert Bentley's security detail made nearly $17,000 in August.
Credit blog.al.com

The head of Gov. Robert Bentley's security detail made $16,918 in August including overtime.

Al.com reports the August income pushed Wendell Ray Lewis' salary, including overtime, so far this fiscal year to $153,000. That's with one month to go in the fiscal year. Lewis' salary is almost $50,000 more than the head of the state Department of Public Safety made in the same period.

Al.com reports that during the last four years on Bentley's security detail, Lewis has made $563,000, or an average of nearly $141,000 per year.

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Alabama Prisons-Razors
4:01 pm
Fri September 5, 2014

Groups Ask Ala. Prisons To Limit Razor Distribution

Advocacy groups say Alabama prisons are giving inmates virtually unlimited access to razors, a practice that's leading to deaths and injuries inside the lockups.
Credit istockphoto

Advocacy groups say Alabama prisons are giving inmates virtually unlimited access to razors, a practice that's leading to deaths and injuries inside the lockups.

The Southern Poverty Law Center and the Alabama Disabilities Advocacy Program asked a court Thursday to bar prisons from freely distributing razor blades to male inmates.

The groups are making the request on behalf of prisoners who've tried to kill themselves using the razors. They say razors are being distributed even after an inmate used one to kill himself at Limestone prison in 2011.

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National-Guard-Drills-Postponed
3:56 pm
Fri September 5, 2014

Federal Budget Crunch Idles Guard Units Across US

Training drills for tens of thousands of Army National Guard members including Alabama have been called off this weekend because of a federal budget shortfall.
Credit usmilitary.com

Training drills for tens of thousands of Army National Guard members from New Hampshire to Hawaii have been called off this weekend because of a federal budget shortfall.

A National Guard spokesman says a $101 million gap in funding for training is being addressed by postponing drills, suspending travel and other steps. Meanwhile, there are efforts underway to get funding reallocated so the drills can be held later this month.

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Politics & Government
3:27 pm
Thu September 4, 2014

Alabama AG Says BP Ruling Could Mean Billions

Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange says the state will benefit from a court ruling that could mean billions of dollars in damages for the Gulf oil spill in 2010.
Credit LutherStrange.com

Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange says the state will benefit from a court ruling that could mean billions of dollars in damages for the Gulf oil spill in 2010.

Strange says a judge's decision that oil giant BP caused the spill through reckless conduct means the company will pay additional civil penalties.

Strange says Alabama will receive part of that money, although the exact amount isn't clear.

Strange commented Thursday after a federal judge in New Orleans ruled BP bears most of the responsibility for the Gulf oil spill.

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Obesity Rankings-Alabama
3:15 pm
Thu September 4, 2014

Alabama Ranks 8th In National Obesity Study

A new report by two public health groups says Alabama has the eighth highest adult obesity rate in the nation.
Credit istockphoto

A new report by two public health groups says Alabama has the eighth highest adult obesity rate in the nation.

The report released Thursday by the Trust for America's Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation found that 32.4 percent of Alabama's adults are obese.

Mississippi and West Virginia tied for first place at 35.1 percent. Colorado had the lowest rate at 21.3 percent.

In Alabama, the two groups found that the obesity rate for white adults was 29.8 percent. It was 27.3 percent for Latino adults and 41.8 percent for black adults.

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Alabama Fundraising
4:43 pm
Wed September 3, 2014

Bentley Keeps Large Fundraising Lead Over Griffith

Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley is maintaining a large fundraising lead over Democratic challenger Parker Griffith.
Credit blog.al.com

Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley is maintaining a large fundraising lead over Democratic challenger Parker Griffith.

The Republican incumbent has raised more than $5 million in contributions in his quest to win a second term.

Campaign fundraising reports filed Wednesday show that Bentley added more than $400,000 to his campaign war chest in August.

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