A disagreement over the hiring of a deputy county administrator resulted in a sometimes tense meeting at Monday's meeting of the Montgomery County Commission. Commissioners got involved in a discussion over who has the authority to hire the individual, commissioners or County Administrator Donnie Mims. Two county attorneys sided with commissioners. Commissioner Reed Ingram said he would like to seek an attorney general's opinion, but that proposal was rejected by Commission Chairman Elton Dean. In the end, no action was taken.
Alabama's latest unemployment rate is unchanged at 6.1 percent. The Department of Labor says the preliminary jobless rate for January was the same as the December 2013 rate. The unemployment rate of 6.1 percent represents 130,444 people without jobs. The rate is down considerably from a year earlier. The jobless rate for January 2013 was 6.7 percent.
The National Weather Service says winds blowing as strong as 110 mph are responsible for storm damage in the town of Atmore. Two stores were badly damaged when a storm moved through Sunday morning. Falling trees damaged two homes and parts of town lost power. Through it all, no one was hurt. Forecasters said the damage is consistent with a strong downburst of winds sometimes called straight line winds. Powerful, fast moving storms on Sunday also caused sporadic property damage in parts of Mobile, Escambia and Covington counties.
Prattville Police Chief Mark Thompson said the medical condition of a 9-year-old boy who shot Thursday afternoon is improving in a Birmingham hospital. Chief Thompson issued a statement stating the bullet missed the boy's vital organs and the child is stable. Prattville Police have decline to reveal where the shooting occurred or the circumstances that led to the incident. Chief Thompson said he is withholding the information is out of respect for both families. He also called the shooting a tragic event for all involved. Prattville Police say the shooting appears to be an accident.
The Alabama House of Representatives have voted to create a state database to enforce existing limits on payday loans. Birmingham Representative Patricia Todd called the creation of the database a good first step in the regulation of the payday loan industry. House lawmakers approved the bill Thursday on a 93-1 vote. It now moves to the Alabama Senate.
The Alabama secretary of state's office is planning to have staff traveling the state starting Monday to provide photo IDs to voters who need them for the upcoming elections. Secretary of State Jim Bennett says the mobile site visits are in addition to the IDs being available in his Montgomery office and at county boards of registrars. The other approved IDs include an Alabama driver's license, a non-driver ID issued by the state, military IDs and Alabama college IDs.
The House Ways and Means Education Committee approved an education budget Wednesday that removes the one percent pay bonus to teachers. Committee Chairman, Republican Representative Bill Poole of Tuscaloosa, says there is not enough money to do everything they wanted. Governor Robert Bentley maintains the education budget that he supports does ensure funding for both a raise for educators and full funding of the PEEHIP program. Governor Bentley has said he will not sign the budget if he does not agree with the final proposal.
Legislation allowing a marijuana derivative to be used to treat severe epileptic seizures won unanimous approval Tuesday night in the Alabama Senate. It authorizes the University of Alabama at Birmingham to do research on the use of Cannabidoil, or CBD oil, to treat severe seizures. The bill now goes to the House where its sponsor, state Representative Mike Hall said passing any legislation involving marijuana is a challenge. The bill is known as Carly's Law because of the work by Carly Chandler's family to pass it.
Montgomery Police believe robbery was the motive. Detectives have charged two 19-year-old males with capital murder in the death of a night manager at the Atlanta Highway Taco Bell. MPD said Kenneth Temple and Rendauldous Chisolm are accused of killing 43-year-old Vettia Roche early Monday morning. Police said Temple and Chisolm are employed at the fast food restaurant. The two males were arrested Monday afternoon and are being held in the Montgomery County Detention Facility without bond.
Montgomery police are conducting a homicide investigation after the body of an unidentified female was found behind a fast food restaurant on Atlanta Highway Monday. Lt. Regina Duckett, a police spokeswoman said officers and fire medics responded to the 5300 block of Atlanta Highway around 7:30 a.m. where they discovered an adult female who had sustained fatal injuries. The deceased woman's name was withheld and no arrests were made.