1. Bills seek transparency from state boards, AHSAA
- An Alabama lawmaker wants the state’s more than 100 licensing boards – the groups that regulate professionals from contractors to medical personnel – to provide public accountings of their revenue and spending.
- A separate bill would require regular audits of the Alabama High School Athletic Association.
- Rep. Chris Pringle’s House Bill 61 would require boards’ expenditures, including contracts and grants, be published on their websites.
- Pringle, R-Mobile, said his bill originated from his work a few years ago on a budget reform task force. He said he found out many licensure boards don’t deposit the fees they collect into the state treasury, but have private bank accounts.
- “They answer to no one,” Pringle said.
- An 2018 Alabama Policy Institute report said there are licensing boards for 151 occupations, covering more than 432,000 Alabama workers, more than 21% of the state’s labor force. The institute estimated the initial costs to be $122 million and annual license renewals to be $45 million.
- Read the full story from ADN’s Mary Sell HERE.
2. New ads
- Bradley Byrne has two new ads up going after opponents Jeff Sessions and Tommy Tuberville. One is straight contrast, and the other is half positive, half attack on Tuberville. See them both HERE.
- Jeff Sessions has a new ad up touting his stances and actions to combat illegal immigration. See it HERE.
- Cam Ward has two new ads in his race for Supreme Court Place One, one with him talking straight into the camera and the other featuring his daughters. See them both HERE.
- Jerry Carl has a new ad up in his campaign for Congress in AL-2 saying he has a “backbone” similar to President Donald Trump. Watch it HERE.
- Barry Moore is up with his first ad up in the race for Congress in AL-2 highlighting his military service. See it HERE.
3. Trump doesn’t heed Barr’s request to cool tweeting on DOJ
- Unbowed by a public rebuke from his attorney general, President Donald Trump says he has the “legal right” to intervene in criminal cases and sidestep the Justice Department’s historic independence.
- A day after Attorney General William Barr said the president’s tweets were making it “impossible for me to do my job,” Trump declared he had the right to ask the agency to intervene in cases but so far has “chosen not to.” It was a rare public flare-up of tensions, simmering for weeks at the upper echelon of the Trump administration, as Barr marked one year on the job Friday.
- As president, Trump technically has the right to compel the Justice Department, an executive branch agency, to open investigations. But historically, when it comes to decisions on criminal investigations and prosecutions, Justice has functioned independently, unmoved and unbound by political sway. And that reputation is important to Barr, as he made clear in an interview Thursday on ABC News.
- “I’m happy to say that, in fact, the president has never asked me to do anything in a criminal case,” Barr said. “However, to have public statements and tweets made about the department, about our people … about cases pending in the department, and about judges before whom we have cases, make it impossible for me to do my job and to assure the courts and the prosecutors in the department that we’re doing our work with integrity.”
- Read more HERE.
4. One thing unites establishment Democrats: Fear of Sanders
- A growing number of Democratic lawmakers, union officials, state leaders and party strategists agree that Bernie Sanders is a risky nominee to put up against President Donald Trump. There’s less agreement about whether — and how — to stop him.
- Critics of the Vermont senator, who has long identified as a democratic socialist, are further than they’ve ever been from unifying behind a moderate alternative. None of the viable centrists in the race is eager to exit the campaign to clear a path for a candidate to become a clear counter to Sanders. And Sanders is looking to Saturday’s Nevada caucuses to post another win that would further his status as an early front-runner.
- With fear and frustration rising in the party’s establishment wing, a high-stakes math problem is emerging. It could be impossible to blunt Sanders as long as a trio of moderate candidates — former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, former Vice President Joe Biden and Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar — stay in the race. And with former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg pumping hundreds of millions of dollars into the swath of states that vote on Super Tuesday, March 3, the effort to stop Sanders will become even more challenging when the campaign goes national next month.
- Read the full story from Steve Peoples and Alan Fram HERE.
5. Op-ed: Alabama’s Diversion Programs Are In Trouble. We Must Do Better.
- As lawmakers prepare to begin week three of the 2020 Regular Session, prison reform continues to be one of the top issues to watch.
- Today, Leah Nelson and Carla Crowder with Alabama Appleseed offer an op-ed detailing some inadequacies with the state’s diversion programs.
- The organization has recently published a new report on the subject, and among its conclusions is that fixing drug courts and diversion programs could help with Alabama’s dangerous and crowded prison situation.
- Here’s an excerpt:
- Read the full piece HERE.
A message from the
Alabama State Port Authority
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Bills seek more financial transparency from state licensure boards, AHSAA
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Byrne ramps up attacks on opponents as March 3rd primary approaches
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Sessions ad touts his stances, actions on illegal immigration
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Ward campaign ads highlight job of Supreme Court justice
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Barry Moore ad touts his military service
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Carl says he’s ‘tough’ in new congressional race ad
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – One thing unites establishment Democrats: Fear of Sanders
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Trump doesn’t heed Barr’s request to cool tweeting on DOJ
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Op-Ed: Alabama’s Diversion Programs Are In Trouble. We Must Do Better.
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Medical marijuana bill heads to first vote in Legislature
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Monday final day to register for upcoming Alabama elections
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Ivey budget proposal includes North Alabama forensics lab, Taylor Hardin addition
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Democratic hopefuls now test strength among minority voters
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Column: A love letter to Alabama
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Weekend Digest- February 16, 2019
AL.COM – Dying behind bars: 33-year-old inmate’s stage 4 cancer going untreated in Alabama prison
AL.COM – Quarry plans raise pollution concerns for Opelika area residents
AL.COM – I-10 toll war heads to Montgomery
AL.COM – Would you take a bullet for Trump? Alabama Senate candidates weigh in
AL.COM – Alabama in line for $42 million in federal funds for water projects
AL.COM – Tuberville chats with Bama fans, other travelers at Priester’s Pecans
AL.COM – Contributor Joseph Goodman: Formation of Negro Leagues spurred change in Birmingham
AL.COM – Columnist Kyle Whitmire: New Alabama monuments bill puts Birmingham mayor on the spot
AL.COM – Columnist John Archibald: Alabama leaders should hear themselves
Montgomery Advertiser – Woman’s body found, police investigate hit and run
Montgomery Advertiser – 2012 Elmore killing to be spotlighted on Investigation Discovery’s ‘Murder Comes Home’ series
Montgomery Advertiser – Confusion in the air: FAA reverses course, now says 1 plane lands, another still missing
YellowHammer News – Community development key to elevating Alabama
YellowHammer News – UAB Hospital named one of America’s best hospitals for 2020
YellowHammer News – Tuberville denies being an ‘amnesty’ advocate — ‘No pathway to citizenship if you come here illegally’
BIRMINGHAM WATCH – Study: Diversion Programs Work – When They Don’t Sabotage Participants
BIRMINGHAM WATCH – More Alabama Farmers Sign up to Grow Hemp
Dothan Eagle – Three years after Amanda Bond’s body was found, the family still waits for justice to be served
Dothan Eagle – Holland named executive director of Southeast Health Foundation
Dothan Eagle – Free tax filing has confused many Americans. Here’s help.
Tuscaloosa News – Alabama eligible for nearly $42M in federal water funding
Tuscaloosa News – Tenn. university to offer tuition discounts in 9 states
Tuscaloosa News – Residents concerned about possible pollution from quarry
Decatur Daily – About the Candidates: Morgan County District Judge Place 3
Decatur Daily – Gambling issues prompt push to revoke business license of West Moulton St. store
Decatur Daily – Morgan judicial candidate pledges experience, compassion, conviction
Times Daily – Sorrell seeks resolution for inmate re-entry bill
Times Daily – Flu cases in Shoals slightly below the state average
Times Daily – Al-Anon brings convention to Shoals Feb. 21-23
Gadsden Times – Missing vehicle, driver found in water at Buck’s Pocket
Gadsden Times – Troy woman continues custom of weaving thread
Gadsden Times – I-10 toll war heads to Montgomery
Anniston Star – Bills seek more financial transparency from Alabama’s licensure boards, AHSAA
Anniston Star – Phillip Tutor: JSU’s chance to ‘look better’ in 2020
Anniston Star – Anniston’s Black Heritage Festival reaches 40 years
Troy Messenger – Ordinance banning drones over public spaces dismissed
Troy Messenger – House votes to make targeting police a hate crime
Troy Messenger – Heart Walk celebrates heart health
Andalusia Star News – Wing man survives fall
Andalusia Star News – Forest Service to burn Conecuh this weekend
Andalusia Star News – Coronavirus causes drop in gas prices
Opelika-Auburn News – Free tax filing has confused many Americans. Here’s help.
Opelika-Auburn News – Two reported killed in Macon County; AU issues alert after shooting in Auburn
Opelika-Auburn News – SPECIAL REPORT: SECRET TIGERS Feds eye Auburn University for recruits…and find them
Daily Mountain Eagle – New WBMC CEO wants to meet community
Daily Mountain Eagle – McRae will go on state board if Amendment 1 fails
Daily Mountain Eagle – Grant to fund many PD needs in Oakman
Trussville Tribune – City of Moody ranks in top 10 for Safest Cities in Alabama
Trussville Tribune – Trussville teen places 1st for Alabama All-state Middle School Jazz Band
Trussville Tribune – Congressman Bradley Byrne meet & greet reception in Trussville Tuesday
Athens News Courier – Political forum set for Thursday in Athens
Athens News Courier – Archivist reflects on wet, dry seasons of Limestone County history
Athens News Courier – 14-year-old charged with Barnard College student death
Sand Mountain Reporter – Crossville man charge with child sex abuse | Local student comes forward after recent FSNA presentation
Sand Mountain Reporter – United Way Campaign Celebration set for March 5
Sand Mountain Reporter – Dodging for dollars | In the Midst Ministries Honduras to host dodgeball fundraiser in Boaz
WSFA Montgomery – Shooting at Evergreen Apartments near campus of Auburn University
WSFA Montgomery – Body found in wood line off I-85 SB in Montgomery Sunday morning
WSFA Montgomery – Meet Auburn’s new police chief Cedric Anderson
Fox 6 Birmingham – Person shot to death in west Birmingham parking lot
Fox 6 Birmingham – Man crosses state lines to find help at Firehouse Ministries
Fox 6 Birmingham – Man steals Hanceville police cruiser, wrecks after high speed chase
WAFF Huntsville – Local business in Lacey’s Spring face impact from road closure
WAFF Huntsville – First reponders facing delays due to closure of HWY 231 near Lacey’s Spring
WAFF Huntsville – Search resumes for missing car, driver at Buck’s Pocket State Park
WKRG Mobile – Monday is the deadline for voter registration for Super Tuesday in Alabama
WKRG Mobile – BREAKING: Overnight shooting in Mobile
WKRG Mobile – Police say woman posing as newborn photographer drugged mother to steal baby
WTVY Dothan – Authorities search for escaped inmate from Elba Work Release Center
WTVY Dothan – Pedestrian hit by vehicle in Dothan
WTVY Dothan – Man wounded in downtown Dothan shooting
WASHINGTON POST – Many Americans say they want to die at home. It’s not always easy to make that happen.
NEW YORK TIMES – Rival Democrats Accuse Bloomberg of Trying to ‘Buy’ Election
NEW YORK TIMES – Black Families Came to Chicago by the Thousands. Why Are They Leaving?
NEW YORK TIMES – Unloved by Trump, NPR Carries On
NEW YORK TIMES – As Floods Spread in Mississippi, Officials Say the Worst Is Still Ahead
NEW YORK TIMES – Former Justice Dept. Lawyers Press for Barr to Step Down