Alabama Crimson Tide

Unemployment in Alabama is down slightly and wages are higher than it’s been in seven years. A-P-R student reporter Nia Craig has more on the state's employment rates…


Employment has increased by 7,200 jobs. According to the governor’s office the state’s jobless rate for October was 5.9 percent. This is one-tenth of a point from 6 percent in September.


The government sector has gained more than half of these jobs. There were also increases in the professional and business services area, plus the trade and transportation sector.


Eric Parker
Brynn Anderson / AP

A second trial for an Alabama police officer accused of using excessive force on an Indian man ended yesterday in a hung jury.

U.S. District Judge Madeline Haikala declared a second mistrial yesterday in the case involving former Madison police officer Eric Parker. Parker’s defense attorney asked the judge to acquit his client.

Remembering "The Snake"

Jul 10, 2015

Fans of the Alabama Crimson Tide are mourning the loss of former quarterback Kenny Stabler. The University of Alabama confirmed that the athlete and broadcaster died at the age of sixty nine from complications related to cancer. Stabler’s running ability earned him the nickname, “The Snake.” Ken Gaddy is the director of the Paul W. Bryant Museum on the Tuscaloosa campus. He says Kenny Stabler came along during the golden age of Alabama quarterbacks…


Alabama Governor Robert Bentley says the state must solve a budget crisis to avoid deep cuts in government services.

      Bentley rolled out his plans for a special legislative session focusing on the state budget.

      The governor says he is seeking "fair minimal taxes" including a cigarette tax increase, changes to business privilege taxes, and either a soft drink tax or small changes to a state income tax deduction.

Deontay Wilder
Brynn Anderson / Associated Press

Alabama lawmakers just finished their first legislative session under a new pay structure that gives them a salary equal to the median household income in the state

Voters approved the change in 2012 with the prediction that it would save the state money and would be a fairer way to set legislators’ pay.

However, Alabama Senate numbers show that, so far, the new system costs about the same. The legislator who sponsored the idea said it is premature to judge.

It’s tax season and university students across the state are rolling up their sleeves to help taxpayers manage all the paperwork.

The group Impact Alabama has opened help centers to assist families with children who earn fifty two thousand dollars a year or less. Families without children to make less than twenty thousand dollars also qualify for assistance.

Sarah Louise Smith is the Executive Director of Impact Alabama. She says families get tax tips and the student volunteers gain experience working with customers.


     A state task force will weigh options this month for how to relieve severe overcrowding in Alabama prisons.

Committee members say the ideas will likely include sentencing changes, building new facilities to house inmates and increased resources for probation and parole.

Prison Reform Task Force Chairman Cam Ward says he hopes to have legislation ready in February.

Law officers in northwest Alabama say they are seeing a surge of heroin abuse and crime related to the drug.

They say the resurgence of heroin in Alabama in recent years mirrors national patterns.

The Times-Daily reports that authorities in several northwest Alabama counties say they didn't see heroin in their areas before 2013. But in the past two years, they've made arrests for drug crimes related to its sale. In Lauderdale County, officials reported five overdose-related deaths this year.

Attorney General Luther Strange says a phone scam involving jury duty is spreading to more Alabama counties and it often targets the elderly.

The scam involves someone pretending to be with law enforcement or with the local court system. They will call a person and threaten to arrest them for missing jury duty. Then the caller says the matter can be settled without an arrest if the person agrees to purchase a pre-paid credit card and pay an amount over the phone. The attorney general says the court system doesn't work that way. It usually contacts people in writing.


 Democratic state Sen. Quinton Ross of Montgomery is the new minority leader in the Alabama Senate.  The Senate Democratic Caucus announced that it picked Ross to replace Sen. Vivian Davis Figures, who did not seek another term. The caucus said Figures will become the group's treasurer.

Ross is taking over the leadership of a smaller minority. Going into the Nov. 4 election, Democrats held 12 of the 35 seats in the Senate. They now have eight.

Tourism officials are offering new posters to mark the state of Alabama's run of four consecutive college football titles.

Small posters that say "4NAROW" will be available starting Thursday at state welcome centers and tourism offices.

The mini-posters resemble Alabama car tags and refer to the consecutive Bowl Championship Series crowns won by the University of Alabama and Auburn University.

University of Alabama

Football fans attending the national championship game Monday night between Alabama and Notre Dame will get to see a public service announcement filmed by University of Alabama students to combat binge drinking.

Students in Alabama's advertising and public relations department created the 60-second PSA directed by Shaquille O'Neal. O'Neal agreed to participate after students generated a Twitter campaign to get him involved. The university announced the PSA will air in Miami Sun Life Stadium during the first quarter of the game.