Here’s your Daily News for Monday, October 19.
1. Bill would change school funding to help growing systems
- Alabama lawmakers will try again next session on a bill to change how growing K-12 schools are funded, taking some burden off of local systems to pay for additional students.
- Under current law, school systems receive a per-pupil allocation from the state based on prior year enrollments.
- Senate Bill 9 would change the Foundation Program funding formula to account for enrollment increases, projecting growth based on the previous two years’ enrollment growth for students attending schools in person.
- “What it does in growing school districts across the state is project out what the growth will be, instead of relying on the current system of using current units to fund that at the end of the year,” bill sponsor Sen. Chris Elliott, R-Daphne, said. “It projects out what your growth is likely to be and funds those students at the beginning of the fiscal year.”
- Growth attributable to full-time virtual students will be funded at a rate determined by the State Department of Education based on the average cost to districts of educating a full-time virtual student beginning in fiscal year 2022.
- Elliott had the same bill in the spring session, it cleared the Senate education budget committee with bi-partisan support and a 12-0 vote, but never got a vote on the Senate floor before concerns about COVID-19 shut down much of the session.
- “It’s disappointing that it got stuck in COVID,” Elliott said. “… But it’s pre-filed now. I wanted to make sure that people had an opportunity to look at it ahead of time, ask questions and get comfortable with it.”
- Barring no special sessions, the Legislature is scheduled to meet again for its next regular session on Feb. 3.
- Full story from ADN’s Mary Sell HERE.
2. New rule means businesses must reapply for tax licenses before 2021
- New rules at the Alabama Department of Revenue will require businesses with various tax licenses to reapply in November and December or have their current licenses canceled in 2021.
- Annual renewal of licenses is now required, a change from previous operations. The department posted a notice on its website Oct. 1 about the rule change and renewal requirement that was adopted in February.
- Valid sales tax licenses, for example, allows holders to buy goods, equipment, etc. sales tax-free even if they plan to re-sell them as a retailer or as a wholesaler or to lease them to third parties.
- ADOR is requiring and will review from businesses their current legal name, owner information, Social Security or FEIN numbers and other information.
- If a business fails to renew their annual license, the license will expire and the account will no longer be active.
- “A handful of us tax practitioners are concerned that this important announcement largely went unnoticed by most busy CPAs, as well as businesses across the country that hold a sales tax, rental tax, seller’s use tax, or a handful of other Alabama DOR-issued licenses,” said Bruce Ely, a partner at the Birmingham-based Bradley Arant law firm who specializes in tax law. “Every one of those licenses automatically expires at midnight on Dec. 31. Taxpayers need to get started on the renewal process first thing Monday, Nov. 2.”
- Full story from ADN’s Mary Sell HERE.
3. Trump, Biden campaign in swing states they are trying to flip
- President Donald Trump and Democratic rival Joe Biden went on offense over the weekend as both campaigned in states they are trying to flip during the Nov. 3 election, just over two weeks away.
- Both candidates are trying to make inroads in states that could help secure a path to victory: Trump in Nevada and Minnesota and Biden in North Carolina and Georgia.
- Trump began his Sunday in Nevada, visiting a church before a fundraiser and an evening rally in Carson City. Once considered a battleground, Nevada has not swung for a Republican presidential contender since 2004.
- Biden attended Mass in Delaware before campaigning in North Carolina, where a Democrat has not won in a presidential race since Barack Obama in 2008.
- While there will be plenty of action, this week will center on Thursday’s final debate, which may be Trump’s last and best chance to change the trajectory of the election, which most polls show trending in Biden’s favor since the last debate.
- Read more HERE.
4. COVID relief may slip past election
- Congress is quickly moving past the point at which it can deliver more coronavirus relief before the election, with differences between House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, her Senate Republican rivals and President Donald Trump proving durable despite the glaring needs of the country.
- Republicans are reconvening the Senate this week for a revote on a virus proposal that’s about one-third the size of a measure being negotiated by Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. But the Senate GOP bill has failed once before, and Trump himself now says it is too small.
- Trump now insists that lawmakers should “go big” with a bill of up to $2 trillion or more, a total reversal after abandoning the talks earlier this month. But Trump’s political problems aren’t swaying Senate Republicans.
- “He’s talking about a much larger amount than I can sell to my members,” McConnell said.
- A procedural vote on a stand-alone renewal of bipartisan Paycheck Protection Program business subsidies is slated for Tuesday.
- But McConnell himself seems to know the vote won’t breathe new life into the bill. Once the measure fails, he plans to turn the chamber’s full attention to cementing a 6-3 conservative majority on the Supreme Court by confirming Judge Amy Coney Barrett.
- Full story HERE.
5. Top 25: Clemson remains on top despite Bama’s big Georgia win
- Clemson held off Alabama on Sunday to retain the No. 1 spot in The Associated Press college football poll, extending its longest run atop the poll to seven weeks.
- The Crimson Tide ran away from Georgia on Saturday night to make the case to be No. 1, but it wasn’t enough to topple the Tigers.
- Clemson defended its turf with a historic blowout against Georgia Tech. The 66-point rout was the largest ever in an Atlantic Coast Conference football game. Clemson received 54 first-place votes out of 62 from the panel of sports writers and broadcasters.
- The Crimson Tide got the remaining eight first-place votes. Notre Dame moved up to a season-high No. 3, No. 4 Georgia dropped one spot and Ohio State moved up to No. 5 a week before the Big Ten starts playing.
- The SEC now has only 4 teams in the Top 25, as Auburn and Tennessee dropped out of the rankings after Saturday losses.
- See the full poll HERE.
- Read more about Alabama’s path to the College Football Playoff HERE.
Police: Man jailed in mother’s slaying attacks guard, inmate
- OZARK, Ala. (AP) — A jailed Alabama man awaiting trial in the killing and dismembering of his 58-year-old mother was accused of attacking a corrections officer and a fellow inmate with a homemade weapon, according to authorities.
- The Dale County Jail correctional officer was leaving a cell block Saturday afternoon when the inmate, Chad Brogdon, 37, used an improvised sharp object to injure the officer, Dale County Chief Deputy Mason Bynum said.
- Brogdon was accused of repeatedly striking the officer, who was able to free himself and isolate the inmate back inside the cell block, Bynum said.
- The inmate then also assaulted a fellow prisoner, officials said. That inmate was taken to a hospital with injuries that were not described. The correctional officer was also treated at a hospital and released.
- Brogdon was charged with two counts of attempted murder in the Saturday attacks, in addition to a murder charge in the slaying of his mother, Penny Newton.
- Newton’s remains were found in a burned car on a highway near the Choctawatchee River last year, news outlets have reported.
New documentary focuses on blues music in Alabama Black Belt
- MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — A new documentary about the blues tradition of Alabama’s Black Belt will premiere on Alabama Public Television on Oct. 23, showing off a region that’s sometimes overlooked musically.
- Produced by One State Films and APT and directed by Alabama filmmaker Robert Clem, the hourlong show traces the history of the region’s African American music from the days of plantations and slavery through the 1900s to now.
- “Alabama Black Belt Blues” uses slave narratives, old blues records and current Black blues musicians to tell the musical story of the region, which was named for the dark color of its soil, according to an announcement by the TV network.
- The film includes archival recordings and live performances at Black Belt juke joints in Boligee, Panola and Union and the Red Wolf Lounge in Birmingham.
Federal officials making changes to some oil-lease terms
- NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A federal oil lease sale in November will be the first in a decade to offer 10-year leases at some depths.
- Since 2010, leases in depths of 800 to 1600 meters (about a half-mile to nearly a mile) have run for seven years, with a three-year extension available for companies that have started a well on their lease.
- “After a careful analysis of the past 10 years’ data, … BOEM is reverting to offering the 10-year primary term in these specific water depths,” the Bureau of Offshore Energy Management said in a news release Thursday. Leases in deeper waters remain at 10 years. In shallower waters, the leases are for five years, with a three-year extension for companies that start a well within those first five years.
- The agency is offering about 78 million acres (31.6 million hectares) in water from nine feet to more than 11,115 feet (three meters to 3,400 meters).
- Like all sales since August 2016, the sale on Nov. 18 will be livestreamed, bids will be read publicly.
- The last lease sale, in March, offered about the same acreage and got bids on about 0.5% of the total.
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Bill would change school funding to help growing systems
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – New rule means businesses must reapply for tax licenses before 2021
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – 2020 Watch: Is Thursday’s debate Trump’s last chance?
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Despite past Democratic wins, Trump making a play for Nevada
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – COVID delay: New coronavirus relief may slip past election
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Top 25: Clemson remains on top despite Bama’s big win over Georgia
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Path to College Football Playoff goes through Alabama
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Alabama finishes Census count on par with most other states
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – ADPH expands free breast cancer screening efforts statewide
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Auburn to study pandemic in Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Populous Jefferson County approves Saturday absentee voting
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Policy vs. personality: Undecideds torn as election nears
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Weekend Digest – October 18, 2020
AL.COM – Deadline to register to vote in Alabama is Oct. 19
AL.COM – Montgomery officials tying tax bid to military future
AL.COM – Shipt workers demand better pay, treatment in protest at company’s Birmingham headquarters
AL.COM – Columnist Dana Hall McCain: Clowns, jokers, and Amy Coney Barrett
AL.COM – Contributor Cameron Smith: Individual liberty without compelling moral vision leads us down a dangerous path
Montgomery Advertiser – Air University’s Officer Training School commissions first Space Force officers
Montgomery Advertiser – An attempted robbery ends with the robber killed, Montgomery police say
Montgomery Advertiser – Huge Prattville apartment complex fire displaces 26 families
WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – Sumiton man has message after 69 days in hospital battling COVID-19
WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – Shelby Co. officials search for missing teen
WBRC Fox 6 Birmingham – Shipt shoppers protest over company actions they say interfere with wages
Tuscaloosa News – VIDEO: Teachers work through the challenges of 2020 school year
Tuscaloosa News – Schools and teachers adapt to the COVID-19 induced challenges
Tuscaloosa News – Contract approved for Jack Warner Parkway/Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard improvements
Decatur Daily – Morgan County, Town Creek DUI arrests spike during pandemic
Decatur Daily – Area unemployment rates climb, but remain below statewide rate
Decatur Daily – Morgan, Limestone and Lawrence counties all ‘very high risk’ for COVID-19
Times Daily – Drug Take Back Day is Saturday
Times Daily – COVID-19 case totals are climbing in Shoals
Times Daily – FAFSA NIghts Set for Oct. 27, Nov. 19
Anniston Star – Marksmanship site gains new business, rising visibility
Anniston Star – Saturday morning civic pride brings volunteers out to work
Anniston Star – James Bennett: Amtrak service reduction takes effect in Anniston
YellowHammer News – Auburn University researchers aim to fuel new markets from hurricane-ravaged timber
YellowHammer News – Alexander Shunnarah announces winners of first billboard design competition
YellowHammer News – Alabama business leaders meet with Ambassador Lighthizer, key trade official
Gadsden Times – Numbers of COVID-19 cases increase; local hospital admissions down
Gadsden Times – Etowah election officials plan for a big turnout Nov. 3
Gadsden Times – U.S. Sen. Doug Jones makes brief stop Sunday in Attalla
Dothan Eagle – Answer Man: What happens to a K-9 after it retires?
Dothan Eagle – Police: Man jailed in mother’s slaying attacks guard, inmate
Dothan Eagle – Police arrest Dothan man accused of attempting to shoot wife as she tried to leave
Opelika-Auburn News – Great Pumpkin Splash takes over Sportsplex
Opelika-Auburn News – Opelika block party celebrates community at The Curtis House
Opelika-Auburn News – Absentee voting rush continues in Lee County
WSFA Montgomery – Montgomery residents outraged after community street becomes dumping site
WSFA Montgomery – Charge: Man accused of killing his mother tried to kill officer
WSFA Montgomery – Cullman family pushes for legislative change after uncle’s murder
WAFF Huntsville – COVID-19 in Alabama: 831 new confirmed cases added Sunday
WAFF Huntsville – Madison Co. commissioner: confederate statue may be moved soon
WAFF Huntsville – Drive-thru flu vaccine happening Tuesday in Decatur
WKRG Mobile – More than 40 million people have been infected with Covid-19
WKRG Mobile – Study will look at how the pandemic is impacting poor communities in Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana
WKRG Mobile – Police search for missing and endangered woman in Escambia County, Florida
WTVY Dothan – Local doctor arrested after allegedly holding Uber driver at gunpoint
WTVY Dothan – More than 12,000 experts condemn ‘herd immunity’ as solution to COVID-19
WTVY Dothan – Elk Lodge 1887 holds inaugural Burgers, Blues, and Brews Festival Saturday
WASHINGTON POST – Biden leads Trump. So did Hillary Clinton. For Democrats, it’s a worrisome campaign deja vu
WASHINGTON POST – ‘My people fought for the right to vote’: With a surge of emotion, Black Americans rush to the polls
WASHINGTON POST – Democrats’ stunning fundraising
NEW YORK TIMES – With Covid-19 Under Control, China’s Economy Surges Ahead
NEW YORK TIMES – China Threatens to Detain Americans if U.S. Prosecutes Chinese Scholars
NEW YORK TIMES – Bright Spot for N.Y.C.: In Schools, Only 18 Positives Out of 10,676 Tests
WALL STREET JOURNAL – China Economy Grows 4.9% as Rest of World Struggles With Coronavirus
WALL STREET JOURNAL – Top White House Official Went to Syria for Hostage Talks
WALL STREET JOURNAL – Trump Trails Among Seniors, Key Group in Many Battleground States
Front Pages (images link to newspaper websites, which you should visit and patronize)