Alabama Supreme Court

The Alabama Supreme Court is refusing to reconsider a ruling that some say could make it easier for government organizations to meet behind closed doors.

The justices issued a ruling Friday saying they won't revisit the case of Clay Slagle, who sued after he wasn't given the job of Montgomery County's school superintendent in 2009.

Slagle claimed school board members held illegal, private meetings before refusing to hire him.

Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley wasted no time in signing legislation providing tax credits to parents who send their children to private schools instead of failing public schools.

The Alabama Supreme Court decided late Wednesday afternoon to throw out a lower court order that kept the Legislature from sending the bill to the governor for signing. The Legislature delivered the bill Thursday morning and Bentley signed it just before 11 a.m.

Alabama Education Association

The Alabama Supreme Court has given the Alabama Education Association until Monday to respond to an effort by Republican legislators to get a private school tax credit legislation signed.

AEA got a Montgomery judge to issue a temporary restraining order barring the governor from signing the bill into law. Attorneys for Republican legislative leaders appealed to the Supreme Court and asked the court to lift the judge's order. The Supreme Court on Friday gave AEA's lawyers until Monday to respond.

The Birmingham News file

The Alabama Supreme Court can decide whether the governor gets to sign private school tax credits into law.

Republican legislative leaders want the all-Republican court to lift a temporary restraining order issued by a Democratic judge. The order by Circuit Judge Charles Price of Montgomery keeps the governor from signing the bill into law while the judge considers a lawsuit filed by the Alabama Education Association. AEA contends the Legislature improperly passed the bill to provide tax credits to parents who move their children from failing public schools to private schools.

The Alabama Supreme Court says the gambling machines seized from VictoryLand casino don't resemble the game of bingo.

The court issued an opinion Friday explaining why it ordered a search warrant for a raid by the attorney general after a Macon County judge refused.

The justices said they viewed an undercover surveillance video of what the casino called "electronic bingo" games and they "do not reasonably resemble the game of bingo." The justices also said a reasonable man could reach no conclusion other than there is a fair possibility the games are illegal slot machines.

Prosecutors say they'll ask the Alabama Supreme Court to overturn an appeals court decision throwing out the 2009 conviction and death sentence of a man accused of throwing four small children off a coastal bridge.

The Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals on Friday ordered a new trial for Lam Luong. The court ruled publicity surrounding the case made it impossible for the suspect to have a fair trial in Mobile where the crime occurred.

Attorney General's office spokeswoman Joy Patterson said Monday the state plans to appeal.

Roy Moore is to take the oath of office as Alabama's Supreme Court Chief Justice.

Investiture ceremony for Moore and for Supreme Court Justice-elect Tommy Bryan will be at 1:30 p.m. Friday in the Supreme Court courtroom in the Alabama Judicial Building.

Moore served as chief justice from 2001 to 2003, but was removed from office for refusing to obey a federal judge's order to remove a Ten Commandments monument from the judicial building.

BOC / Alabama State Treasury

Parents with children in Alabama's prepaid college tuition program are frustrated that they can't plan for the future while the Alabama Supreme Court decides how much tuition the program will pay.

Parents told the program's board chairman Wednesday that they are looking at coming up with $600 to $700 per semester if the Supreme Court allows the program to pay tuition at 2010 levels rather than current levels. They also said they are worried that the program will close down if the court requires current tuition. The board is paying the current tuition while it awaits a ruling.

Alabama Supreme Court has asked the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals to take another look at the case of death row inmate Anthony Ray Hinton, convicted of killing two people during 1985 robberies at Birmingham fast food restaurants.

The 56-year-old Hinton had questioned the qualifications of a firearms expert who testified during the trial. The Supreme Court asked the appeals court to use a different standard when reviewing the trial judge's decision that the firearms expert was qualified.

BOC / Alabama State Treasury

The legal battle over Alabama's financially troubled prepaid college tuition program is headed back to the Alabama Supreme Court. A Montgomery judge ruled Monday that a law passed by the Legislature in the spring to permit reduced tuition payments is constitutional. The state Supreme Court had asked Circuit Judge Johnny Hardwick to review the law before the high court considers it. If the Supreme Court agrees with Hardwick, then the Prepaid Affordable College Tuition Plan will be able to pay reduced rates rather than full tuition.

Judge To Rule Later On Ala. Prepaid Tuition Plan

Aug 27, 2012
Tax Credits / Flickr

A judge says he will rule later on whether a new law can be applied retroactively to Alabama's prepaid college tuition plan. Montgomery County Circuit Judge Johnny Hardwick heard arguments from both sides Monday and took the case under advisement. At issue is a settlement the board of the Prepaid Affordable College Tuition plan reached with many participants to pay less than full tuition because of the plan's financial problems. The Alabama Supreme Court ruled in March that the settlement violated state law. The Legislature revised the law in April.

Alabama Tuition Plan Paying Full Rates For Fall

Aug 22, 2012
Alabama State Treasurer Young Boozer / Facebook

State Treasurer Young Boozer says Alabama's prepaid college tuition plan will pay full tuition for the fall semester while it waits for a court to rule on the legality of making reduced payments.

Alabama's plan currently has more than 36,000 participants, and more than 19,000 of them eligible to attend college this fall. Boozer said Wednesday there is no way to know when the court will rule.

Alabama court reconsiders prepaid tuition ruling

Jul 11, 2012
BOC / Alabama State Treasury

The Alabama Supreme Court has reopened a lawsuit over whether Alabama's prepaid college tuition program can pay less than full tuition for students.

The Supreme Court on Wednesday told a lower court to look at whether state officials can retroactively apply a new law passed by the Legislature to allow reduced tuition payments. A plan to provide reduced payments was struck down by the Supreme Court in March and then the Legislature passed a law in April to try to save it.