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Daily News Digest – January 17, 2020

Good morning and Happy Friday!
Here’s your Daily News for January 17, 2020.


1. Senate trial begins

  • The U.S. Senate opened the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump with quiet ceremony Thursday — senators standing at their desks to swear an oath of “impartial justice” as jurors, House prosecutors formally reciting the charges and Chief Justice John Roberts presiding.
  • The trial, only the third such undertaking in American history, is unfolding at the start of the election year, a time of deep political division in the nation. Four of the senators sitting in judgment on Trump are running for the Democratic Party’s nomination to challenge him in the fall.
  • “Hear ye, hear ye, hear ye!” intoned the Senate’s sergeant at arms, calling the proceedings to order just past noon.
  • Senators filled the chamber, an unusual sight in itself, sitting silently under strict rules that prohibit talking or cellphones, for a trial that will test not only Trump’s presidency but also the nation’s three branches of power and its system of checks and balances.
  • Read more HERE.


2. Ivey: $7M more for roads

  • Gov. Kay Ivey and the Alabama Department of Transportation announced Thursday $7 million in funding to several cities and counties for road and bridge projects.
  • “An investment in our roads and bridges is an investment in the future of Alabama,” Ivey said in a written statement. “These $7 million in funds will go a long way in helping communities across the state address various road and bridge projects…”
  • The Rebuild Alabama Act, which included a 10-cent-a-gallon gas tax increase, sends some revenue directly to cities and counties. It also requires ALDOT to establish an annual grant program setting aside $10 million for local projects.
  • There were 31 projects selected for funding. A second award cycle is expected later this year to award the remaining $3 million.
  • It is anticipated that all projects will be under contract by the end of the calendar year, after bids are taken.
  • The announcement comes as Ivey on Friday is scheduled to attend the dedication of the new Interstate 20-59 bridge through downtown Birmingham. The state’s busiest roadway had been shutdown undergoing a replacement for the last year.
  • Full story from ADN’s Caroline Beck HERE.


3. Sessions in new ad: Democrats fear me

  • In the first major television buy in his bid to reclaim his former Senate seat, former U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., makes the case that he is the candidate Democrats most fear because he “won’t back down” when fighting for conservative causes.
  • Painting a bleak picture of “socialism, open borders, free health care for illegal immigrants” from Democrats who plan to “gut our religious freedom and freedom of speech,” the news ad presents Sessions as the conservative stalwart to counter a cultural push to the left.
  • “Today’s Democrats want to redefine America – and they mean business,” Sessions says. “They don’t want me in the Senate because they know I won’t back down.”
  • Read more about the buy and see the ad HERE.



4. Sewell endorses Biden

  • Joe Biden has secured a weighty Deep South endorsement for his presidential campaign, with Alabama’s lone Democratic House member on Friday announcing her support for the former vice president.
  • U.S. Rep. Terri Sewell marks Biden’s 11th endorsement from the Congressional Black Caucus, far outpacing any other Democratic White House hopeful. Sewell also expands Biden’s footprint across the March 3 Super Tuesday primary slate that will play an outsize role in determining the Democratic nominee.
  • “The No. 1 threat to my district is Donald Trump. The No. 1 threat to Martin Luther King’s legacy is Donald Trump,” Sewell said of the Republican president. “The best way I can counter that threat is to support someone who can beat him.”
  • Biden, she continued, “has a proven track record of furthering what Dr. King fought for” and can “protect that legacy” because he can appeal across the racial and ideological spectrum.
  • Read more from Bill Barrow HERE.


5. Grants available for First Class Pre-K classrooms

  • The Alabama Department of Early Childhood Education is seeking more private child care centers to house its First Class Pre-K program and grants are available to offset costs.
  • “A First Class Pre-K grant can be a much-needed source of funding to help child care programs improve the quality of early education for children in their care,” said Allison Muhlendorf, executive director of the Alabama School Readiness Alliance, in a written release.
  • The Alabama Department of Early Childhood Education manages the First Class Pre-K program through a competitive grant process. Public and private schools, child care centers, faith-based centers, Head Start programs, nonprofits and other community-based preschool providers are all eligible to apply.
  • Read more HERE.



ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Senate trial begins, senators vowing ‘impartial justice’
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Joe Biden boosts Super Tuesday case with Sewell endorsement
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – $7M awarded for road and bridge projects
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS  – Grants available for First Class Pre-K classrooms
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Sessions in new ad: Democrats fear me
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Trade deal: US eases sanctions, China to buy more US exports
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Bill named for fallen officer would allow wiretaps on suspected felony drug offenders
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS  – Lawmaker hopes to decrease hot-car deaths with new legislation
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Community colleges to see slight tuition increase
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Jones to host statewide FAFSA workshops
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Daily News Digest – January 16, 2020
AL.COM  – Alabama: Your $700 million I-59/20 bridge through Birmingham is ready
AL.COM  – Bed bugs, fire hazards and mold: Inside Alabama’s worst public housing
AL.COM  – Indicted Limestone County judge confesses to ‘unethical, reprehensible’ crimes.
AL.COM  – McKenzie Adams’ suicide caused by school’s failure to stop racist, sexist bullying, lawsuit claims
AL.COM  – Congresswoman urges investigation after death of Pilgrim’s Pride worker
AL.COM  – TVA eyes building solar energy farm in north Alabama
AL.COM  – Cities, counties, get new gas tax money for road projects
AL.COM  – Claudette Colvin, the pregnant teen who fought Alabama bus segregation before Rosa Parks
AL.COM  – Contributor Jeremy Gray: Yoga would provide school students with quality of mind, quality of life
Montgomery Advertiser – Montgomery man convicted of 2016 Carmichael Road shooting
Montgomery Advertiser – Planning to get hitched on a plantation? Pinterest won’t help you plan that wedding.
Montgomery Advertiser – DSW employee accused of walking out with over $13,500 in merchandise
YellowHammer News – After vowing not to politicize impeachment, Doug Jones now fundraising off of Trump trial
YellowHammer News – Ivey announces $7M in road projects funded by new gas tax money
YellowHammer News – Breast Cancer Research Foundation of Alabama gives $1.05 million to UAB cancer center
Dothan Eagle – Florida man found not guilty in 2016 murder
Dothan Eagle – Rural Wiregrass cities pick up $1 million from gas tax revenue for road repairs
Dothan Eagle – Lt. Gov. Will Ainsworth talks workforce development initiatives at Wallace Community College
Tuscaloosa News – Superintendent apologizes for teens yelling homophobic slurs
Tuscaloosa News – Alabama senator wants bond law change after Blanchard death
Tuscaloosa News – Jury returns manslaughter verdict in construction site shooting death
Decatur Daily – City to hire recruiting firm in search for director of development
Decatur Daily – Modaus Road traffic light at Austin High may not come until November
Decatur Daily – IDB: Automotive fluid producer jobs will average $50,000 a year
Times Daily – No word on additional charges in dead livestock case
Times Daily – Court appearance for Greenberg, DeArman, reset for February
Times Daily – Lauderdale charges jailer with promoting contraband
Gadsden Times – Sardis City awarded state grant to resurface multiple roads
Gadsden Times – Homeless Coalition to do count Wednesday; volunteers needed
Gadsden Times – Marshall inmate caught with shank, faces new charge
Anniston Star – Ohatchee man pleads not guilty to attempted murder of deputies
Anniston Star – Prep roundup: Pleasant Valley boys win; Piedmont boys cap undefeated area run
Anniston Star – Anniston police investigating robbery claim
Troy Messenger – CHHS to host Winter Ball next Friday
Troy Messenger – Traditional bands to open Pike Piddlers storytelling festival
Troy Messenger – Kappa Alpha Psi to host inaugural scholarship brunch
Andalusia Star News – 18-wheeler strikes pole, lights out for repair
Andalusia Star News – Judge gives man 20 years for domestic violence
Andalusia Star News – Red Level receives $125K in funds for resurfacing
Opelika-Auburn News – HealthPlus move to Auburn Mall upsets citizens
Opelika-Auburn News – OMS ensemble to perform at state event
Opelika-Auburn News – Smart Girls promoting health for women
Daily Mountain Eagle – New Alabama Power center opens in Jasper Tuesday
Daily Mountain Eagle – Sheriff’s department welcomes first intern
Daily Mountain Eagle – County BOE votes to relinquish Head Start grant
Trussville Tribune – Hewitt-Trussville High School graduate named to President’s List at UWA | The Trussville Tribune
Trussville Tribune – CRIME STOPPERS: Center Point man wanted on domestic violence charge
Trussville Tribune – TCS Superintendent talks growth & strategic plan at Trussville Area Chamber Luncheon
Athens News Courier – City officials talk tough on litter
Athens News Courier – State prison study group to make recommendations
Athens News Courier – Man cleared of wife’s murder asks daughter to call him
Sand Mountain Reporter – Adams runs for District 3 Commissioner
Sand Mountain Reporter – Time to scale back, Alabama
Sand Mountain Reporter – Neighbors to speak to Democrats
WSFA Montgomery – Search continues for missing Tallapoosa County woman
WSFA Montgomery – Mass. family well weeks after CAP guides rescuers to plane crash site
WSFA Montgomery – Former MPD officer convicted of enticing a child for immoral purposes
Fox 6 Birmingham – Apartment maintenance man charged with raping a woman who has dementia
Fox 6 Birmingham – Two people arrested for car break-ins stretching from Calera to Montevallo
Fox 6 Birmingham – Calera works to alleviate 18-wheeler traffic through downtown with new road
WAFF Huntsville – Lawmakers prefile wiretapping bill named for officer Billy Clardy III
WAFF Huntsville – Union Hill School earns Blue Ribbon’s Lighthouse honors
WAFF Huntsville – Huntsville Madison County Builders Association opens free construction school
WKRG Mobile – Secretary of Defense coming to NAS Pensacola to discuss security changes
WKRG Mobile – East Brewton teen charged with sodomizing 8-month-old
WKRG Mobile – Florida high court sides with governor on felon voter rights
WTVY Dothan – Flooding takes over one Elba daycare
WTVY Dothan – Wiregrass towns benefiting from Rebuild Alabama Act
WTVY Dothan – Home Sweet Home: Foster Street, other historic downtown buildings could soon become residencies
WASHINGTON POST  – Senate impeachment trial begins with rancor over witnesses and new evidence about Trump’s Ukraine dealings
WASHINGTON POST  – How the Senate’s most vulnerable Democrat is approaching impeachment
WASHINGTON POST  – Black Americans deeply pessimistic about country under Trump, whom more than 8 in 10 describe as ‘a racist,’ Post-Ipsos poll finds
NEW YORK TIMES  – Joe Biden Boosts Super Tuesday Case With Sewell Endorsement
NEW YORK TIMES  – G.A.O. Report Says Trump Administration Broke Law in Withholding Ukraine Aid
NEW YORK TIMES  – ‘Please Try to Help Us’: Conversing With Mississippi Inmates on a Contraband Phone

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