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Weekend Digest – April 25, 2021

Good afternoon and Happy Sunday!
Here’s your Daily News for April 25.

1. Lawmakers to vote on gambling, marijuana and trans bills

  • Alabama legislators in the closing days of the session will face decisions on gambling, medical marijuana as well as legislation that would ban the use of medications to help transgender youth transition.
  • House Speaker Mac McCutcheon said he expects all three measures, which have already cleared the Alabama Senate, to get votes in the House of Representatives in the final days of the session. Lawmakers plan to meet for two more weeks and then return to Montgomery for a final day on May 17.
  • Read more about the three of the issues before lawmakers in the closing days of the legislative session from Kim Chandler HERE.

2. Ivey signs ban on transgender athletes

  • Gov. Kay Ivey on Friday signed legislation restricting transgender students from participating in K-12 sports, making Alabama the latest conservative state to ban transgender girls from playing on female sports teams.
  • Ivey’s office announced in an email that she had signed the bill that says a public K-12 school “may never allow a biological male to participate on a female team.” Asked if the governor had a comment on the decision, spokeswoman Gina Maiola said she could confirm the governor signed the bill but did not elaborate.
  • Supporters of the bill, HB 391, say transgender girls are born bigger and faster and have an unfair advantage in competition. Opponents argue the bills are rooted in discrimination and fear, and violate the federal law barring sex discrimination in education.
  • Read more from Kim Chandler HERE.

3. ‘A second chance:’ Alabama approves expungement bill

  • Alabama will soon allow people with past convictions for certain low-level crimes to apply to have their records wiped clean, under a bill passed by the Alabama Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Kay Ivey.
  • The bill called the Record Expungement Designed to Enhance Employment and Eliminate Recidivism Act — or the REDEEMER Act — would allow people with certain nonviolent misdemeanor convictions to apply to have their records expunged if they have met a variety of conditions.
  • Sen. Linda Coleman-Madison, the sponsor of the bill, said it will help people who made a mistake in their past move forward and “pull themselves up” in their life.
  • “It’s going to give people a second chance. That’s all people are asking for. They’ve served their time. They’ve learned their lesson, and they are not going back there,” Coleman-Madison, D-Birmingham, said.
  • Read more from Kim Chandler HERE.

4. Review of police during Huntsville protests cites problems

  • A civilian board that reviewed police actions during protests in Huntsville last year found that some officers crossed the line in using gas, rubber bullets and other means to break up demonstrations following the police killing of George Floyd in Minnesota.
  • The protests were relatively peaceful and police who fired beanbag projectiles violated department policies at some times, the review released Thursday night found. The use of rubber bullets prompted complaints of excessive force. The panel found better oversight is needed, news outlets reported.
  • The report also criticized the use of tactics including dousing people with pepper spray and deputies using the scopes of sniper rifles like binoculars to observe the crowd. Police overreacted to some social media posts and poor communication helped worsen problems, the roughly 250-page report said.
  • Read more HERE.

5. Biden at 100 days

  • For any new leader, a lingering pandemic that has killed more than a half-million citizens would be plenty for a first 100 days. But it has been far from the sole preoccupation for the now 78-year-old President Joe Biden.
  • The oldest person ever elected president is tugging the United States in many new directions at once, right down to its literal foundations — the concrete of its neglected bridges — as well as the racial inequities and partisan poisons tearing at the civil society. Add to that list: a call for dramatic action to combat climate change.
  • Read more about Biden’s first 100 days HERE.


ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Lawmakers to vote on gambling, marijuana and trans bills
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Alabama Gov. Ivey signs ban on transgender athletes
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – ‘A second chance:’ Alabama approves expungement bill
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Review of police during Huntsville protests cites problems
ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Biden at 100 days
AL.COM – Gambling, marijuana and trans bills still on Alabama lawmakers’ agenda.
AL.COM – Birmingham mayor denounces law banning transgender athletes from public school sports teams.
AL.COM – First cases of South African COVID variant being tracked in Alabama.
AL.COM – How can police mistake a gun for a taser? ‘Rare but possible’.
AL.COM – After Derek Chauvin verdict, 6 killed by police across America in 24 hours.
AL.COM – Columnist Frances Coleman: To everybody in healthcare, from the doctors to the janitors: You matter so much.
AL.COM – Contributor Michael Staley: Gas prices are rising again, so at least consider ‘electric’ for your next car.
YELLOWHAMMER NEWS – To protect and solve: Saudi criminal justice major at Univ. of South Alabama readies for nontraditional role.
YELLOWHAMMER NEWS – New logistics projects coming to Coastal Alabama.
POLITICO – Biden faces health industry fight over new ‘surprise’ billing ban.
POLITICO – Why Biden’s Armenian Genocide Declaration Really Is a Big Deal
DECATUR DAILY – Stimulus, tax refunds driving vehicle sales.
DECATUR DAILY – The Decatur Daily: Legislature embroiled in nullification circus.
FLORENCE TIMES DAILY – Businesses considering logistics of new alcohol delivery law.
GADSDEN TIMES – Jones’ rendering plant, OLF repeal bills remain stalled; legal questions raised.
WASHINGTON POST -Americans give Biden mostly positive marks for first 100 days, Post-ABC poll finds.
WASHINGTON POST – As pandemic surges anew, global envy and anger over U.S. vaccine abundance.
WASHINGTON POST – Contributor Andrea Benjamin: Reform movements can’t last without hope. The Chauvin jury gave us some.
WASHINGTON POST – The fading GOP establishment moves to support Cheney as Trump attacks and McCarthy keeps his distance.
WASHINGTON POST – Washington pumped $30 billion into emergency grants for college students. Here’s how it’s going.
NEW YORK TIMES – Millions Are Skipping Their Second Doses of Covid Vaccines
NEW YORK TIMES – C.E.O. Pay Remains Stratospheric, Even at Companies Battered by Pandemic
NEW YORK TIMES – A Tiny Part’s Big Ripple: Global Chip Shortage Hobbles the Auto Industry
THE GUARDIAN – Alabama is latest state to ban trans girls from female sports teams.
FINGER LAKE TIMES – Space Command general tells lawmakers Alabama lacks communications capabilities he needs.

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