5:45pm

Tue June 17, 2014
WVAS Local

SPLC Lawsuit

The Southern Poverty Law Center has announced plans to move forward with a lawsuit against Alabama's prison system.  Attorney Maria Morris with the SPLC said inadequate medical care has resulted in inmate suffering and deaths.  Morris says solving the prison overcrowding issue is vital to raise the standards to a humane level.  Attorneys with the SPLC said state officials have long known about the problems plaguing the prisons across the state but have failed to resolve them.  The Alabama Corrections Commissioner Kim Thomas said last week that the SPLC's accusations are inaccurate and incomplete. 

Pouncey's New Job

The chief of staff at Alabama's Department of Education, Craig Pouncey, is leaving to become superintendent of the Jefferson County school system.  The Jefferson County School Board voted 4-1 Tuesday to hire Pouncey.  Pouncey has been with the Department of Education for more than a decade.  His duties include handling legislative and financial matters for public schools.  He served as Crenshaw County School superintendent prior to moving to the state department.  Jefferson County school board members said they will vote on the details of Pouncey's contract at their next meeting. 

ASU Nanobiotechnology

Alabama State University's Nanobiotechnology curriculum has gained worldwide attention.  The program, now in its 7th year, is directed by microbiology professor, Dr. Shree Singh, who recently returned from a lecture at Aston University in England.  Dr. Singh said the field of nanobiotechnology has limitless applications. 

U.S. Economy

Recent data on the U.S. economy has been mixed, but chief executives of large U.S. companies are increasingly optimistic.  The Business Roundtable says that its CEO outlook index rose to 95.4 in the second quarter, the highest it's been in two years.  Those who were surveyed expressed greater optimism about hiring and sales, though the percentage of CEOs planning to invest more in their businesses fell to 44 percent from 48 percent.