Mardi Gras

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.

Authorities in Gulf Shores, Alabama, are trying to determine why an SUV driven by a 72-year-old man accelerated and hit members of a high school band at the start of a Mardi Gras parade.

Tuesday morning's accident injured 12 students. At a news conference, city spokesman Grant Brown said three were in critical but stable condition as of Tuesday afternoon. Police Chief Ed Delmore said investigators have obtained a search warrant for the vehicle. They hope to get electronic data from the 2008 Ford Expedition. Investigators also were looking at video of the accident.

A more than $60 million museum that failed shortly after it opened in Mobile is getting a second chance. 

The mayor's office says the GulfQuest National Maritime Museum will hold a grand reopening on the city's waterfront on February 18th. That's during Mardi Gras season, when thousands of visitors are in town for parades and balls.

The mayor's office says the museum will feature a new exhibit on ship wrecks, plus new hours, free parking and lower ticket prices.

Amtrak passengers between New Orleans and Atlanta will be affected by routine maintenance on the tracks next week, and will be put on buses instead.

A "people's parade" is being planned on Dauphin Island for the upcoming Carnival season.

Though the Island Mystics Mardi Gras organization will no longer parade on Dauphin Island, town leaders say the good times will continue to roll during the upcoming Carnival season.

The Dauphin Island Town Council recently voted to sponsor and organize a parade to replace the Island Mystics parade on Feb. 4.

Council member Gene Fox says it will be "a people's parade" similar to the Joe Cain Day parade in Mobile.

Tuscaloosa tornado damage
NWS Birmingham / Wikimedia

The federal government says it wants its money back after auditors claim Tuscaloosa improperly received more than $1 million in aid following the 2011 tornadoes.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Inspector General has determined the Federal Emergency Management Agency should reclaim about $1.2 million in storm assistance funding.

A judge has rescheduled a hearing on indicted House Speaker Mike Hubbard's request to dismiss ethics charges against him.  Circuit Judge Jacob Walker delayed the hearing until Feb. 16 because of a scheduling conflict.

Hubbard is alleging prosecutorial misconduct after a political consultant says he communicated often with the lead prosecutor and used the information to try to damage Hubbard politically.

Department of Housing and Urban Development
Wikimedia

More than 800 Alabamians could face eviction from public housing under a new proposal that would cut off assistance for higher-earning individuals.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development recently announced a proposal aimed at reducing the number of "over-income" tenants who live in government-assisted homes. Currently, federal law requires people to meet income requirements when they move in to government-assisted housing. But they are not forced to leave if their income grows past the threshold.

A tuberculosis outbreak is continuing in the small Alabama town of Marion.

Alabama Department of Public Health officials say two more people have tested positive for TB in Perry County. Division of tuberculosis control director Pam Barrett says one case of the infection was diagnosed in a child less than 15 years old.

Officials say the tuberculosis outbreak has killed three people since 2011, prompting more aggressive screening efforts in Marion. Those efforts included paying residents to get tested, attend follow-up appointments and complete necessary treatment.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is fining an Alabama auto parts supplier over $170,000 for unsafe working conditions.

Daeil USA is based in Valley, Alabama and supplies parts to Hyundai and Kia. OSHA recently issued 17 citations against the company, 10 of which were classified as serious.

They’re accusing the employer of willful failure to develop procedures to prevent multiple machinery from starting up during maintenance and servicing. OSHA says the unguarded machinery put workers in danger of amputations and other serious occupational hazards.

Alabama Governor Robert Bentley recently announced that he is suing the federal government over refugees settling in his state.

Governor Bentley argues the U.S. government hasn’t provided Alabama enough information about the refugees to be placed in the state. Bentley says he’s filing the lawsuit out of concern for the safety of Alabama’s residents.

Kristi Graunke is a senior supervising attorney with the Southern Poverty Law Center. She says the federal government takes their vetting process seriously.

Federal prosecutors say Alabama’s probate judges should continue issuing same sex marriage licenses, despite the actions of the state’s chief justice. APR’s Pat Duggins spoke to one group that thinks Roy Moore should be kicked out of office, again.

The Southern Poverty Law Center filed a complaint against Roy Moore with the state’s Judicial Ethics Panel. This comes after Moore suggested that probate judges defy the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision legalizing same sex marriage.

murderpedia

      A federal judge has stayed the execution of an Alabama inmate who was scheduled to put to death Thursday.  U.S. District Judge W. Keith Watkins on Tuesday granted an emergency stay for Tommy Arthur. The death row inmate is challenging Alabama's new execution drug combination as potentially cruel and unusual punishment. That’s because it uses the same chemicals used in botched executions in other states.

      Esther Brown is the executive director of Project Hope. She says supports an end to the death penalty…

wikipedia

          Weather forecasters along the Tennessee Valley are warning residents of the Shoals to be on guard for icy roads tonight and tomorrow. The overall threat of snow and sleet has eased over much of Alabama. But, towns like Florence could still see some of the wintry weather that been plaguing areas of New England. Lauderdale and Colbert Counties are under a winter storm warning until 6 p-m. this evening while the majority of the northern counties are a winter weather advisory for most of Monday.

AP Photo/Press-Register, Mike Brantley

Plastic beads and moon pies will be flying all day on the Alabama coast.

Parades began in the morning and are scheduled to go into the night in Mobile and Baldwin counties for Fat Tuesday.

Rain is in the forecast, but organizers say the celebration will continue unless the weather turns severe.

Six parades are scheduled in Mobile, home of the nation's oldest Mardi Gras festivities. The beach cities of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach also have parades.