United Way

Alabama State House
Jay Williams / Flickr

A lottery bill is heading to a critical vote in the Alabama House of Representatives.

Today’s vote could determine whether a proposed state lottery goes before Alabama voters later this year or if the bill dies in the special session.

House members will debate Gov. Robert Bentley's proposed state lottery. Bentley is seeking the first statewide referendum on the establishment of a lottery since voters rejected the idea in 1999.

The Montgomery County District Attorney says his county’s court system is drowning in a massive backlog of pending drug cases.

District Attorney Daryl Bailey tells the Montgomery Advertiser that a backlog of more than 1600 cases means that anybody arrested for drug-related charges would currently be waiting more than two years for trial as evidence is processed.

Bailey says the state's budget crisis and staff cuts mean the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences is struggling to keep up with the number of cases it needs to analyze.

United Way of Madison County Facebook profile

The United Way of Madison County is planning to kick off its annual fall campaign with a block party in Huntsville.

   The celebration is scheduled for 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at Big Spring Park.

   The event will include a free street carnival with live buskers, music, carnival games and a giant, free birthday cake to mark the agency's 70th anniversary in Huntsville. The cake will be cut at 1 p.m. Saturday.