ethics commisson

Alabama Ethics Commission

The longtime executive director of the Alabama Ethics Commission is retiring.

Jim Sumner told the commission Wednesday that he plans to step down Oct. 1. Sumner has spent 35 years in public service, including 17 years as the chief staff member for the Ethics Commission. He previously worked in the attorney general's office, in the lieutenant governor's office and for the University of Alabama System.

Birmingham attorney Mark White says he's been hired by Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard to pursue people accused of libeling him.

Hubbard's business, Auburn Network, recently canceled a consulting contract with Southeast Alabama Gas District, which financed his trip to Paris this year. Hubbard traveled with other state officials, whose trips were financed by the Alabama Department of Commerce.