A former Auburn University lab technician accused of distributing a chemical similar to a date-rape drug has pleaded guilty in federal court.

Court documents say Stephen Howard's guilty plea to three counts of possessing and distributing a form of butanediol was accepted yesterday by U.S. District Judge Charles Coody.

According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, the chemical known as BD is odorless and colorless and is used as a sedative.

The Alabama Ethics Commission have released an opinion on  the idea of public employees being paid by outside sources.

Commissioners say the arrangements are presumed to be in conflict with the underlying principles of state ethics law. Commissioners say they will only approve such arrangements on a case-by case basis made through formal opinion requests.

Ethics Commission Executive Director Tom Albritton says the opinion process will bring the arrangements into the open and allow public scrutiny.

The world is getting ready to remember the fiftieth anniversary of Bloody Sunday in Selma early next month. But another bit of Selma history is being remembered now.

Governor Announces New Road And Bridge Projects

Jul 30, 2012
Hannah Rosen / Flickr

The State of Alabama is adding more road and bridge projects to a list to be improved with state and local funding. 34 more construction projects are now part of the ongoing program known as A-TRIP. That's short for Alabama Transportation Rehabilitation and Improvement Program. Governor Robert Bentley announced the extra work during a speech in Madison County. That area will receive two new bridges over the Flint River and Mill Creek amongst other projects totaling seven million dollars of improvement.