Stan Ingold

Assistant News Director

Born in Morehead Kentucky, Stan Ingold got his start in public radio as a volunteer at Morehead State Public Radio.  He worked there throughout his college career as a reporter, host and producer and was hired on as the Morning Edition Host after graduating with a degree in History from Morehead State University. He remained there for nearly three years. Along with working in radio he spent a great deal of time coaching speech and forensics at Rowan County Senior High School in Morehead, working with students and teaching them broadcasting techniques for competitions. 

Stan arrived at Alabama Public Radio in March of 2011. Since then he has been busy criscrossing the state gathering news stories and bringing them to you, the listener. His story on the Key Underwood Coondog Memorial Cemetery recently earned him a regional Edward R Murrow Award for Feature Reporting.

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Former Al House Speaker Mike Hubbard

Former Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard has been sentenced to four years in prison with eight years of probation. Hubbard will have to two hundred-ten-thousand dollars in fines.

Since there is an appeal bond pending, Hubbard was not taken into custody.

We will have more on this story as it develops.

Customers at more than 120 Walmart locations across Alabama will be able to checkout using their smartphones.

Customers could start using Walmart Pay as early as Thursday. Company spokeswoman Molly Blakeman told Al.com the service also rolled out in three other southern states including Georgia, Louisiana and Mississippi.

 

Walmart Pay is already available in Arkansas, Oklahoma and Texas. It will soon be available nationwide.

Members of the Alabama Legislature will elect a new House speaker in February, possibly sooner if Governor Bentley calls a special session.  

Contenders for the job are beginning to emerge after former House Speaker Mike Hubbard was removed from office after being convicted on twelve ethics charges.

Lee County Sheriff's Office

A jury has convicted Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard on 12 charges of violating the state ethics law.

The jury returned the verdict Friday evening after deliberating for seven hours. Sentencing is set for next month.

 

Hubbard faced 23 felony ethics charges accusing him of using political positions as House speaker and chairman of the state GOP to make money and investments from lobbyists and company owners.

The ethics case of Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard is now in the hands of the jury.  APR’s MacKenzie Bates reports from the TK Davis Justice Center in Opelika…  

   Lee County Circuit Judge Jacob Walker handed the case to the jury just before two o’clock this afternoon.  They’re trying to determine if Mike Hubbard used his positions as House Speaker and former state party chair to make money and obtain business and investment for his companies.

      

More than one million Alabamians are  hoping to put a dent in the current drought.  The northern half of Interstate 20/59 have not had rain in a few weeks, which is causing trouble for farmers and their crops.

Brian Fuchs is a climatologist with the national drought mitigation center at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln.  He says the increasing temperatures can bring storms to the area but there’s a catch…

         

The prosecution continues to press their case against House Speaker Mike Hubbard. Governor Robert Bentley took the stand as Hubbard defends himself against twenty three felony ethics charges. Prosecutors are trying to prove Hubbard’s acted illegally when he met with Bentley on behalf of two clients. Former state lawmaker and political commentator Steve Flowers attended the proceedings. He says prosecutors spent time on Bentley’s perceptions of his meeting with Hubbard…   

Governor Robert Bentley has testified under oath in the ethics trial of the Alabama house speaker. Bentley says he remembers meeting with Mike Hubbard to discuss what he described as economic development projects.   

Prosecutors are seeking to prove that Hubbard was being paid up to $12,000 a month to illegally lobby the governor on behalf of his business clients - a municipal gas company and a maker of plastic cups.

Al.com

The speaker of Alabama's House goes on trial later this week facing a barrage of ethics charges.

House Speaker Mike Hubbard faces 23 felony ethics charges stemming from accusations that he used his posts as speaker and state GOP party chairman to steer business to his companies.

Hubbard has maintained his innocence. 

Opening statements are expected Tuesday in what's become a season of scandal in Alabama.

City of Spanish Fort

             

The Alabama Department of Transportation is getting ready for the beginning of hurricane season on June first. Drivers in South Alabama will be seeing more workers along Interstate 65 tomorrow. 

Josh Phillips is a spokesman for the Alabama Department of Transportation. He says they will be conducting a drill to practice reversing the traffic flow between Mobile and Montgomery.

twitter.com

Governor Robert Bentley's longtime spokeswoman is resigning next month.

Communications director Jennifer Ardis says that she wanted a change after nearly 10 years in the governor's office, six with Bentley and four with Gov. Bob Riley.           

Ardis will take over June 16 as the director of communications and external affairs for the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs.

Ardis said she was interested in new challenges and a change of pace after a decade in the governor's officer.

Tennessee Valley Authority engineers say water temperature tests being performed on Wheeler Lake this week could improve efficiency at Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant and keep power rates from increasing. 

The Decatur Daily reports that a team of TVA engineers is collecting water temperature and velocity information from the lake to use in computer forecasting models, which can help run TVA's dams and nuclear plants more efficiently.

 State lawmakers ended the 2016 session with three big items of unfinished business: the oil spill settlement division; Medicaid funding and prison construction. 

Governor Robert Bentley recently said he's considering calling a special session later this year for another try.

The governor's $800 million prison construction plan was the centerpiece of his agenda, but didn't get approved by lawmakers.

slate.com

Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore has been suspended with pay from his office and faces removal from the bench. The action comes from his effort to block same-sex marriage from coming to Alabama despite the U.S. Supreme Court that effectively legalized gay marriage nationwide.   

The Alabama Judicial Inquiry Commission on Friday filed ethics charges against Moore accusing him of abusing his authority and failing to respect the judiciary

Alabama State Capitol
Stan Ingold / APR

Alabama lawmakers are beginning the final two days of the legislative session with some major decisions before them.

Governor Robert Bentley's $800 million prison construction plan, proposed payday lending regulations and a division of oil spill settlement funds are among the top issues that will be decided. Lawmakers return to Montgomery Tuesday.   

 A proposed split of the oil spill settlement money is facing critical votes this week. The Senate will consider a House-passed plan to use the money to pay state debts and for road projects in coastal Alabama

Stan Ingold

 

It has been nearly five years since a massive EF-4 tornado ripped through Tuscaloosa Alabama. Twelve percent of the city was destroyed and seven thousand people became unemployed. Here is a look at what recovery has been like for those who decided to come back and those who did not…

 

justice.gov

Alabama Governor Robert Bentley is facing another hurdle this week.

State Auditor Jim Zeigler has filed an ethics complaint against Bentley and Bentley’s senior political advisor Rebekah Caldwell Mason.  A-L-dot-com reports Zeigler’s complaint is the about the possible misuse of state property by the Governor, and whether Mason should be considered a public official or a lobbyist.

 A north Alabama school superintendent says a state law regarding virtual schools needs to be clarified to allow state funding to follow the students.

The Decatur Daily reports that Athens City Schools Superintendent Trey Holladay says he believes virtual schools should receive funding if they are fully educating students. Two Morgan County superintendents say more time is needed to allow systems to get used to virtual school rules before any funding changes are made.

 

Alabama voters head to the polls next week to name their picks for presidential nominees.

Super Tuesday, with contests in 12 states, represents the biggest single-day delegate haul in the entire nomination process. This also marks what is known as the SEC Primary where several southern states brought their elections dates together to draw more interest from the candidates. Hillary Clinton, Marco Rubio, Donald Trump and Ben Carson all plan stops in Alabama before Tuesday's election.

“Revelation: A Search for Faith in a Violent Religious World”

Author: Dennis Covington   

Publisher: Little, Brown and Company

Pages: 224

Price: $28.00 (Hardcover)

Impossible as it seems, it has been 20 years since Dennis Covington published “Salvation on Sand Mountain,” his report on the snake handling churches of Appalachia, those congregations that followed, literally, the passage in Mark: “They shall take up serpents.”

Seventy six schools in Alabama are wondering what’s next after they were a list of failing schools. The state education department used different criteria for determining failing schools. The current list ranked schools as passing or failing based on last year’s ACT test reading and math scores. That led to ten more schools than last year being included on the list. Dr. Clarence Sutton is the principal of Tuscaloosa’s Central High School, which made the list this year. He takes issue with referring to the schools as “failing”.

     

     Troy University will observe Black History Month with its 2016 Leadership Conference starting tonight. Actor, dancer and director Jasmine Guy will deliver a keynote speech during the event. Attendees will also hear from Juanita Jones Abernathy. She’s the widow of the Reverend Ralph Abernathy. City of Troy spokesman Isaiah Scott says the conference continues to improve each year with more speakers and activities.

A Muslim advocacy group is asking to meet with  Governor Robert Bentley about statements he made on a refugee resettlement program that they call insensitive.

During his State of the State address Tuesday, Bentley criticized the federal refugee resettlement program for not disclosing refugees' background information to officials in states they settle in.

Bentley mentioned terrorist attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, California, and said one of the killers and some refugees in Alabama came from "terrorist nations."

Stan Ingold

       

The National Weather Service is confirming that two tornadoes hit west central Alabama last night. An EF-2 storm struck parts of Pickens County, destroying thirteen homes. A second tornado was confirmed as an EF-1. That twister tore through Fayette County. No deaths are reported from either storm. Today’s damage report was made after assessment teams surveyed the area. Forecaster Jason Holmes says even the trees in this rural area can provide clues as to what happened…

Much of Alabama is under threat of severe weather this afternoon and evening. The National Weather Service is predicting damaging winds of up to 70 miles per hour this afternoon. The forecast also includes hail and the possibility of isolated tornadoes. Several school districts across north and central Alabama dismissed early or canceled after-school activities in anticipation of the storms. John de Block is the warning coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Birmingham. He says the storm threat will continue well into the overnight hours.

Walmart.com

The Alabama Joint Transportation Committee will be in Dothan to discuss the state’s infrastructure as well as ways to fund repairs and constructions. One proposal is an increase in the state’s gasoline tax. That’s expected to be a hot topic in the upcoming legislative session starting next week.

Representative Mac McCutcheon is the chairman of the Joint Transportation Committee. He says committee members will definitely consider public input when it’s time to write legislation.

skysports.com

 

Tuscaloosa native and World Boxing Council Heavyweight Champion Deontay Wilder defended his title in Brooklyn, New York knocking out Artur Szpilka of Poland in the ninth round. 

While Wilder was the heavy favorite to win the bout, Szpilka was a crowd favorite with chants and singing early on.  

Wilder was leading on all three scorecards 78-74, 77-75 and 78-74 after eight rounds but it was a right hand from the champion that dropped Szpilka towards the end of the ninth round.

 

An Alabama police officer acquitted of using excessive force on an Indian man still faces state and federal charges, but legal experts say the outcome of the civil rights trial will likely influence the approach to those cases.

U.S. District Judge Madeline Haikala granted a motion to acquit Madison police officer Eric Parker Wednesday after two previous trials ended in hung juries.

Parker was accused of violating 58-year-old Sureshbhai Patel's civil rights when he slammed him to the ground during a suspicious person investigation in February.

       

The Alabama Department of Public Health will be holding a town hall meeting tonight to discuss an outbreak of Tuberculosis.  Twenty-six people have been diagnosed in the Marion, Centreville and Tuscaloosa areas in the past two years.  Pam Barrett is the Director for the Division of TB control with the Alabama Department of Public Health. She says keeping track of those infected has been a problem.

historymakers.com

Ozell Sutton, a longtime civil rights activist who was associated with the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., has died. He was 90. 

His daughter, Alta Sutton, told The Associated Press on Sunday her father died at Saint Joseph Hospital in Atlanta on Saturday. She said the family had celebrated his birthday nearly a week ago. Ozell Sutton marched for equal rights alongside King in Selma, Alabama, in 1965 and was present at the Memphis hotel where King was assassinated in 1968.

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