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Daily News Digest – March 15, 2022

Presented by the

Alabama Podiatric Medical Association

Good morning!

The Ides of March have come. Ay, but not gone! Beware!

Here’s your Daily News for Tuesday, March 15.


1. Forestry poll shows Durant, Britt pulling away from Brooks

  • A new survey commissioned by the Alabama Forestry Association shows Mike Durant and Katie Britt gaining ground in the race for U.S. Senate. The same poll shows Congressman Mo Brooks slipping from what had been a clear frontrunner status.
  • The poll, first reported by Yellowhammer News’ Dylan Smith, was conducted by McLaughlin and Associates, a firm that has conducted extensive survey research in Alabama and on behalf of former President Donald Trump.
  • The new numbers come on the heels of a new barrage of television and radio advertising that seems to have changed the status quo in the race.
  • Read more from me HERE.


2. Poll shows Ivey in commanding lead

  • The same Forestry/McLaughlin poll showed Gov. Kay Ivey with a commanding lead over her primary opponents.
  • When asked which candidate they would vote for if the election were held today, a sample of likely Republican voters chose Ivey 60% to 13.6% for Tim James and 10.6% for Lindy Blanchard.
  • Ivey also enjoyed an approval rating of 75.2% with just 20.4% of Republicans disapproving of the job she’s doing as governor.
  • McLaughlin also surveyed the races for Supreme Court, Secretary of State and Auditor.
  • Read more HERE.




A message from the

Alabama Podiatric Medical Association

  • Alabama’s scope of practice law for licensed podiatrists hasn’t been amended since it was originally enacted in 1973.
  • In fact, Alabama is one of only three states in the country that does not allow DPMs to treat the foot and ankle in some form.
  • Training for DPMs has evolved significantly over the last 25 years, but younger professionals are bypassing practice opportunities in Alabama because state law significantly limits their advanced training.
  • SB101 by Senator Linda Coleman-Madison would update the state’s podiatry law and seeks to address an emerging access issue for foot and ankle care, particularly in rural and underserved Alabama.




3. What’s on tap

  • The state’s proposed 2023 General Fund budget is expected to get its final vote of approval in the Alabama House this afternoon. Meanwhile, the Alabama Senate could vote on this year’s version of a lottery and gambling bill.
  • The record $2.7 billion budget includes a 4% pay increase for state employees, a one-time bonus for retirees and more money for select agencies, including mental health and pardons and paroles.
  • The budget will need to go back upstairs to the Senate because of changes made in the House. In particular, funding was added to extend Medicaid maternity health coverage for new mothers up to a year. Current law allows for only 60 days of maternity care. A conference committee is expected.
  • In the Senate, approval is expected for a proposed constitutional amendment authorizing a state lottery, sports betting, eight full casinos with slots and table games and two smaller gambling sites that could have up to 300 slot machines each.
  • Assuming the Senate approves the gambling plan, it will move to the House where previous proposals have run into roadblocks.
  • Sponsor Sen. Greg Albritton, R-Range, last week told reporters he was frustrated with the House’s “inability to see the necessity” for state regulation over gambling.
  • “You can’t build a chicken house or an outhouse without a permit of some type permit or control, and yet you can build a casino without any problem,” Albritton said last week.
  • House convenes at 1:00, Senate at 2:00.
  • See you at the State House!



4. Bills to regulate telemedicine pending in Senate, House

  • Bills to regulate medical care provided through telehealth are pending in the Alabama Legislature but debate remains about the proposed rules, including how often physicians must see patients in person.
  • The COVID-19 pandemic quickly expanded the use of technology to allow Alabamians to see their care providers without going into crowded offices, but rules haven’t kept up, bill sponsors say.
  • “Today, telehealth is being done, but there are no guidelines, there is no foundation in the state of Alabama,” House sponsor Paul Lee, R-Dothan, said last week in the House Health Committee he chairs. “It’s basically the wild, wild west.”
  • Lee’s House Bill 423 was approved in the House Health Committee and awaits a House vote. Senate Bill 272, by Sen. Dan Roberts, R-Mountain Brook, is awaiting a vote in that chamber.
  • Lee said he wants to make sure telehealth options offer the same quality of care as in-person visits.The bills authorize the Alabama Board of Medical Examiners and the Medical Licensure Commission to adopt rules for using technology to deliver remote care.
  • Currently, the bill says that if a doctor sees a patient four or more times within a year, there must be an in-person visit. That requirement has drawn some opposition.
  • Read more from Mary Sell HERE.


5. Ukraine war may lead to rethinking of US defense of Europe

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin’s war in Ukraine and his push to upend the broader security order in Europe may lead to a historic shift in American thinking about defense of the continent. Depending on how far Putin goes, this could mean a buildup of U.S. military power in Europe not seen since the Cold War.
  • The prospect of a bigger U.S. military footprint in Europe is a remarkable turnaround from just two years ago.
  • In 2020, President Donald Trump ordered thousands of American troops out of Germany as part of his argument that Europeans were undeserving allies. Just days after taking office, President Joe Biden stopped the withdrawal before it could start, and his administration has stressed NATO’s importance even as Biden identifies China as the main long-term threat to U.S. security.
  • Then came Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
  • “We are in a new era of sustained confrontation with Russia,” says Alexander Vershbow, a former U.S. ambassador to Russia and former deputy secretary-general of NATO.
  • In just the past two months, the U.S. presence in Europe has jumped from about 80,000 troops to about 100,000, which is nearly as many as were there in 1997 when the United States and its NATO allies began an expansion of the alliance that Putin says threatens Russia and must be reversed. By comparison, in 1991, the year the Soviet Union dissolved, the United States had 305,000 troops in Europe, including 224,000 in Germany alone, according to Pentagon records. The number then dropped steadily, reaching 101,000 in 2005 and about 64,000 as recently as 2020.
  • Read more HERE.



A message from the 

Alabama Council on Developmental Disabilities

The Alabama Council on Developmental Disabilities is dedicated to the vision that all Alabamians, regardless of disability, will live, learn, work, and play in inclusive communities.

To that end, we work towards system changes to promote better lives for individuals with developmental disabilities and their families. Learn more at




ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Forestry poll shows Durant, Britt pulling away from Brooks


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Poll shows Ivey in a commanding lead


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Bills to regulate telehealth pending in Senate, House


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Ukraine war may lead to rethinking of US defense of Europe


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Yates out as Brooks’ chief, Pettitt back in


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Alabama marks two years of COVID-19


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Unemployment rate unchanged in January


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – US official: Russia seeking military aid from China


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Auburn, Alabama, UAB, JSU get NCAA Tournament bids


AL.COM – Alabama lawmakers consider tax reductions for retirees, businesses


AL.COM – As gas prices skyrocket, Alabama cities and counties look at budget priorities


AL.COM – With Methodist split delayed again, churches mull whether to go now or stay


AL.COM – Mississippi bans teaching critical race theory in schools


Montgomery Advertiser – Looking for Montgomery fun on St. Patrick’s Day? You’re in luck


Montgomery Advertiser – Violent weekend in Autaugaville, Prattville after two killed in unrelated shootings


Montgomery Advertiser – Developer wants city to remove historic designation from gas station site in Cottage Hill


WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – 100-year-old bell stolen from church in West Point


WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – Are we free from the fear of COVID?


WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – AmeriCorps announces food security initiative grant for UAB


Tuscaloosa News – Breaking gender bias begins with awareness and intention, expert says


Tuscaloosa News – Two dead, including 2-year-old child, after drive-by shooting in Tuscaloosa


Decatur Daily – First Response to end ambulance service in city today


Decatur Daily – First Response ambulance service to cease operations


Decatur Daily – DU work to impact Westmead Street Southwest


Times Daily – Sheffield city officials say flea market is operating illegally


Times Daily – Muscle Shoals orders $997K fire truck for new station


Times Daily – Shots fired call in Florence results in 2 arrests


YellowHammer News – ForestPAC poll: Durant 33.8%, Britt 32.0%, Brooks 17.6%


YellowHammer News – State Sen. Orr on Florida Parental Rights in Education bill: ‘This is something we need to establish as a policy’ in Alabama


YellowHammer News – Gov. Kay Ivey awards $30M in COVID-19 relief funds to rural hospitals


Gadsden Times – State to seek stiffer penalty if there is a conviction in Fords Valley Water theft case


Gadsden Times – Sand Mountain Amphitheater to host classic rock bands at ‘Live To Rock Concert’ on May 22


Gadsden Times – Altoona man dies in two-vehicle crash Sunday on Alabama Highway 75


Dothan Eagle – Jury selection starts in former NBA player’s murder trial


Dothan Eagle – Russia-Ukraine war: Key things to know about the conflict


Dothan Eagle – Wiregrass counties average gas prices vary as much as 19 cents per gallon


Opelika-Auburn News – Over 60 companies urge Texas to drop anti-transgender legislation


Opelika-Auburn News – Carnahan enters race for husband Hagedorn’s seat in Congress


Opelika-Auburn News – Live updates: UN chief warns war is hurting poor countries


WSFA Montgomery – Crash closes U.S. 82 near Autauga County Road 37


WSFA Montgomery – Montgomery woman fears for lives of Ukrainian family members


WSFA Montgomery – 638-acre industrial park to be built in Macon County


WAFF Huntsville – DeKalb County family pleading for open bed in youth mental health facility for son


WAFF Huntsville – Development plans for historic Annie Merts Center in Huntsville move forward


WAFF Huntsville – Opioid overdose medication available to Alabamians for free


WKRG Mobile – Foreign fighters in Ukraine await weapons in chaos of war


WKRG Mobile – Suspect arrested in 5 shootings of homeless people in NYC, DC, police say


WKRG Mobile – Inmate escapes Decatur correctional facility


WTVY Dothan – Cannabis boss confident despite medical marijuana struggles


WTVY Dothan – 30 subpoenas issued for Coley McCraney’s double murder trial


WTVY Dothan – Keith Bland hired as principal at Dothan High School


WASHINGTON POST – How Kyiv’s outgunned defenders have kept Russian forces from capturing the capital


WASHINGTON POST – Senators push for U.S. to offer cash rewards in hunt for Russian oligarchs’ assets


WASHINGTON POST – The antiwar protester who crashed a Russian TV broadcast can’t be found, lawyers say


NEW YORK TIMES – Inside the High-Stakes Race to Test the Covid Tests


NEW YORK TIMES – Ukraine Live Updates: 3 European Leaders Head to Kyiv as Attacks Continue


NEW YORK TIMES – Two Refugees, Both on Poland’s Border. But Worlds Apart.


WALL STREET JOURNAL – Stock Buybacks Are on Course for Another Record


WALL STREET JOURNAL – Ukraine’s Zelensky to Press Congress for More Military Gear


WALL STREET JOURNAL – Fed Wrestles With the Challenge of How Quickly to Raise Interest Rates



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