Alabama

Alabama Celebrates MLK, Robert E. Lee Days

1 hour ago

Alabama celebrates two very different holidays today. It’s both Martin Luther King Jr. Day and Robert E. Lee Day.

Alabama continues to celebrate Robert E. Lee Day despite continuing controversy over Confederate monuments and holidays. Mississippi is the only other state that still celebrates Robert E. Lee Day as a full state holiday.

Etowah Co. Jail food
Reuters

Two advocacy groups have sued Alabama sheriffs seeking records about whether the sheriffs are profiting from the food they serve in their jails.

The Atlanta-based Southern Center for Human Rights and the Alabama Appleseed Center for Law and Justice filed the lawsuit yesterday against 49 sheriffs they said did not comply with a public records request.

State health officials say incidents of the flu are on the rise across Alabama.

The Alabama Department of Public Health says flu activity is picking up for the season, and urged people to get vaccinated if they haven't already.

Health officials say if you're going to get vaccinated, you should request the "quadrivalent vaccine" that protects against four different strains of flu. It is the only version that protects against the Type B / Yamagata flu strain which is currently circulating in Alabama.

Our legendary and iconic Governor George Wallace was Governor four times and his wife was governor once; Governor Wallace and Steve Flowers were close. Here's a story about their relationship...

The state of Alabama has set a date for the execution of a terminally ill man.

Al.com reports the Alabama Supreme Court ordered yesterday that 60-year-old Doyle Lee Hamm is scheduled to be put to death on February 22. Hamm has spent 30 years on Alabama’s death row.

He was convicted in the murder of Patrick Cunningham, a hotel employee in Cullman, Alabama. Cunningham was killed during a robbery that apparently netted just over 400 dollars. Hamm confessed to the murder, and two other men agreed to testify against him in exchange for lesser charges.

In most states, the ultimate political prize has been to go to the United States Senate and die there. Being governor of a state, or most states around the country, is generally considered a prelude or stepping stone to a U.S. senate seat - not so in Alabama...

Pensacola rally snow
Alex AuBuchon / APR

President Donald Trump held a campaign-style rally in Pensacola as part of a weekend trip across the Gulf Coast – less than 20 miles from the Alabama state line and just four days before the hotly contested Senate election between Doug Jones and Roy Moore. Some political experts believed the event would be a de facto campaign stop for Roy Moore. Others said Trump was there to thank the Pensacola area for their strong support during last year’s election. Turns out, it was a little of both.

The state of Alabama has received a $1.5 million grant to help expand a program aimed at strengthening early childhood education across the state.

Governor Kay Ivey’s office says the grant comes from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and will help expand Alabama’s Pre-K through Third Grade Integrated Approach to Early Learning. WSFA-TV reports that program is the first pillar of Ivey’s new education initiative, Strong Start, Strong Finish.

Wallace went to the historic, black Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery and asked for forgiveness from the African American community of Alabama. His conversion and contrition appeared sincere; they responded with forgiveness and rewarded him with their votes, and elected him their governor...

An Alabama police dog shown on video doing push-ups with two officers has become a big hit on the internet, as well as a public safety reminder.

Al.com reports Nitro is a 2-year-old Dutch shepherd who joined the Gulf Shores Police Department's canine unit in February. In a video Gulf Shores police recently posted to social media, the dog raises up and down alongside the officers' push-ups as the song "Eye of the Tiger" plays in the background.

Leigh Corfman
NBC

A woman accusing Alabama U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore of initiating sexual contact when she was 14 said on national televison today that she was "absolutely not" paid to tell her story publicly.

The declaration by Leigh Corfman on NBC's "Today" show comes after Moore's supporters claimed without evidence that reporters were offering thousands of dollars to women for accusations.

The state election is being closely watched as several GOP senators have called Moore to drop out, and President Donald Trump has remained mostly quiet on the issue.

November is National Diabetes Month

Nov 1, 2017

November is National Diabetes Month and health officials say that should serve as a wake-up call to Alabama especially.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says Alabama has one of the highest rates of diabetes in the country at over twelve percent. The National Diabetes Education Program is promoting a campaign to encourage diabetics to take control of their condition through education and awareness.

Dr. Griffin Rodgers is an expert on diabetes at the National Institutes of Health. He says a lack of awareness about the disease can be especially dangerous.

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 traditional fourth congressional district, which stretches across north Alabama just below the Tennessee Valley, has produced some of Alabama's most legendary and  powerful congressmen...

In 1964, the so-called solid South was Democratic - more out of tradition and protocol than policy. Both national parties took the South and Alabama for granted in national elections...

Associated Press

As cities across the country are tearing down and relocating Confederate monuments, a county in southern Alabama on Sunday unveiled a new one.

Several hundred people attended a dedication ceremony for the "Unknown

 Alabama Confederate Soldiers" at Confederate Veterans Memorial Park in Crenshaw County, Alabama, 55 miles south of Montgomery.

The memorial park's owner and developer, David Coggins, says the groups in attendance weren't white nationalists or racists, but were acknowledging their heritage and honoring Confederate soldiers everywhere.

Alabama candidates in the race for Attorney General Jeff Sessions' former U.S. Senate seat spent the weekend in a flurry of last-minute campaign stops ahead of Tuesday's primary.  

Republican Senator Luther Strange, who currently holds the seat, said Saturday that President Donald Trump's endorsement was "critical" in the campaign's homestretch.

Strange faces a slate of Republican challengers, including former Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore, U.S. Representative Mo Brooks, state Senator Trip Pittman and Christian Coalition leader Randy Brinson.

The state of Alabama is working with other states to try and improve cybersecurity measures.

Governor Kay Ivey announced yesterday that she has signed onto a multi-state “Compact to Improve State Cybersecurity” that was agreed upon at this year’s National Governors Association summer meeting.

The compact was signed by 38 governors across the country. It makes recommendations to better secure states’ online infrastructure by building better cybersecurity governance, preparing and defending the state from threats, and developing Alabama’s cybersecurity workforce.

Brady Kilpatrick
Walker Co. Sheriff's Office

Authorities in Florida have captured the last of the dozen prisoners who fled an Alabama county jail in a scheme involving peanut butter.

Florida’s Martin County Sheriff's Office announced on social media that local deputies and the FBI Violent Crimes Task Force captured 24-year-old Brady Andrew Kilpatrick last night about 20 miles north of West Palm Beach.

Kilpatrick was being held in the Walker County jail on marijuana and drug paraphernalia charges when he and 11 other prisoners fled Sunday night.

A 515-mile underground natural gas pipeline running through Alabama, Georgia and Florida is expected to be fully operational by the end of the month.

The Sabal Trail pipeline will be partially in use next week, according to the Opelika-Auburn News. The pipeline runs from a point near Alexander City, Alabama, to south of Orlando, Florida, in order to supply natural gas to Florida Power and Light and Duke Energy of Florida.

www.fma.alabama.gov

Alabama is getting a $100,000 federal grant to encourage school districts to buy fresh local fruits and vegetables.

 The Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries said Friday that the U.S. Department of Agriculture grant will support a coalition called the Alabama Farm to School Cooperative.

The price of liquor is going up across the state of Alabama soon.

Earlier this week, the Alabama Alcoholic Beverage Control Board voted to raise the state’s markup on liquor from 30 to 35 percent. That amounts to about a $1 increase on a bottle that now costs $30. The goal is to raise about $8.2 million for the state’s courts and prosecutors.

Alabama Tourism Represents in New York City

Jun 16, 2017
Mardi Gras float
AL Tourism Dept

Alabama tourism is strutting its stuff in the Big Apple this week.

The state’s Tourism Commission is setting up a series of events and displays to promote Alabama in New York City. Today, the state will officially unveil an eight story tall billboard of Little River Canyon. The display will be located about half a block from Madison Square Garden.

Alabama Tourism Director Lee Sentell says the point is to get people talking about the state.

Alabama ranked 44th in an annual national assessment of child well-being that looks at poverty, education and health access. 

 The Kids Count report was released Tuesday by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. Only Arkansas, Arizona, Nevada, Louisiana, New Mexico, and Mississippi ranked lower than Alabama.

Alabama improved in 11 of 16 indicators. The state ranked well, for example, in the percentage of children with health insurance. Only three percent of children were without health insurance.

Gulf Coast states are considering a proposal that would extend the federal red snapper season for recreational anglers, in what has been a contentious and long-running debate.

According to officials in Alabama and Louisiana, the U.S. Commerce Department has told them that if all Gulf states close their state waters to recreational snapper fishing on weekdays through at least September 4, a weekends-only federal season for red snapper could begin as early as this weekend.

A circuit judge has ruled that parts of Alabama’s Workman’s Compensation Act are unconstitutional – meaning the whole act is unconstitutional, because of a non-severability statute.

The Gadsden Times reports Jefferson County Circuit Judge Pat Ballard found fault with statutes capping recovery for workers permanently but not totally disabled at $220 per week, and capping attorney’s fees at 15 percent.

PBS.org

Today is Confederate Memorial Day. Many across the South will recognize Confederate soldiers who fell during the Civil War. It’s one of three of these uniquely Southern holidays.  There is some controversy that surrounds these days of observance in Alabama and elsewhere in the South.

 

Confederate Memorial Day and the birthdays of Robert E. Lee Day and Jefferson Davis make up the trio of holidays related to the Civil War.

 

Steve Murray is the director of the Alabama Archives and History. He says Confederate Memorial Day has a long history…   

A new report says travelers spent more than $13 billion in the state of Alabama last year.

The study was conducted for the state tourism agency by an economist at Auburn University in Montgomery. It says more than 25 million travelers spent a total of $13.4 billion in the state in 2016 on hotels, shopping, transportation and restaurants.

That represents an increase of 5.4 percent from 2015. Tourism Director Lee Sentell says travel spending has doubled in the state over the last 14 years.

Hackers may have stolen the personal information of people who used a job search database in Alabama and nine other states.

The Alabama Department of Labor recently announced the breach of the America's JobLink, a multi-state web-based system linking jobseekers with employers. Alabamians who used the state's free, online jobs database joblink.alabama.gov may have had personal information exposed.

The site is developed and maintained by America's Job Link Alliance - Technical Support.

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