Alabama Mental Health

Alabama Governor Robert Bentley says he will not back down as he battles with members of his own party over tax increases.

The governor says the cuts currently proposed to state services will cause a tremendous amount of pain to the citizens if lawmakers fail to plug a revenue hole.

The Alabama Senate will vote later today on a budget that slashes $200 million from Alabama’s state agency funding. Governor Bentley calls that budget unworkable and unacceptable. Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh says Republican senators remain largely opposed to any tax increases.

A federal appeals court has upheld the bribery conviction and prison sentence of former Alabama Governor Don Siegelman.

Yesterday, the 11th US Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Siegelman was not entitled to a new trial. The judges also upheld Siegelman's 78-month sentence.

This ruling is the latest legal blow to former Governor Siegelman, who has been fighting to overturn his 2006 conviction in a government corruption case. A federal jury convicted Siegelman of appointing former HealthSouth CEO Richard Scrushy to a state board in exchange for campaign donations.

Some Alabama families who have considered committing mentally ill relatives are asking judges to consider something different.

Among them is Marla Pope, whose daughter has been in and out of psychiatric facilities nine times in nine years since her diagnosis with bipolar schizoaffective disorder. reports Pope filed a petition to have her daughter committed. But she came to a recent hearing to ask a judge to consider an alternative -- a program called outpatient commitment. It offers court-ordered treatment in the home.

The 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals all but ensured gay marriage in Alabama yesterday.

The court announced that they will not act on any appeals until the U.S. Supreme Court rules on same-sex marriage nationally.

In Alabama, that means judges can begin issuing same-sex marriage licenses on Monday, assuming the U.S. Supreme Court doesn't issue a stay before then.

If you’ve been craving your girl scout cookie fix, then today is your day. Girl scouts start taking orders today for the annual fundraising drive by the Girl Scouts of America.

Familiar flavors like thin mints, Savannahs, and Do-See-Does will be joined by gluten free varieties. Those new products are called Toffee-Tastics and Trios.

Hannah Wallace is the Director of Communications and Marketing for the Girl Scouts of North Central Alabama. She says customers can send cookies to U.S. soldiers overseas with a program called Operation Cookie Drop.

Alabama Family Trust

An advocacy group is calling to phase out segregated sheltered workshops for Alabamians with disabilities.

Leaders of the Alabama Disabilities Advocacy Program say taxpayer money now going to the workshops would be better used to move Alabamians with disabilities into regular jobs, where they are part of the community.