The U.S. Justice Department has cleared Alabama's new legislative districts for use in the 2014 elections.
Assistant U.S. Attorney General Thomas Perez notified state Attorney General Luther Strange of the decision today. The Justice Department has to review new political boundaries in Alabama to make sure they don't violate the 1965 Voting Rights Act by disenfranchising black voters. The new districts are based on the 2010 Census.
State Superintendent of Education Tommy Bice says his department will investigate allegations of widespread grade changing in the Montgomery County public school system. Bice said today the Montgomery Superintendent Barbara Thompson sought the department's help, and the investigation is beginning immediately. The Montgomery Advertiser reports that teachers who worked in Robert E. Lee, Jeff Davis and Sidney Lanier high schools in Montgomery said they witnessed or participated in the improper changing of hundreds of grades.
Alabama's Commission on Girls and Women in the Criminal Justice System met today and heard a summary of the Equal Justice Institute's May report claiming widespread incidents of officer-on-inmate sexual abuse at Tutweiler Prison in Elmore County. The Institute's Charlotte Morrison outlined a set of recommendations to the commission. Department of Corrections Commissioner Kim Thomas says changes are already taking place at Tutweiler since the report, but all recommendations will be considered.
ASU Connection Day
Alabama State University's Fall Connection Day is set for Saturday morning. The annual event is an opportunity for high school students and college transfer students to tour the ASU campus and learn what the school has to offer in terms of academics and other activities. ASU Connection Day activities begin Saturday at 8 a.m. at the Dunn-Oliver Acadome.