Sheriff’s department gets two new deputies

After losing three Marion County Sheriff’s Deputies back in February, Marion County Sheriff Kevin Williams has been handed a boost after hiring two new Sheriff’s Deputies on Monday, March 23. Charles Andrew “Andy” Smith, who previously worked with the Guin Police Department, and Brennan Eastman, a former law enforcement officer in Lamar County and Sulligent, were both hired to the department on Williams’ recommendation. The Marion County Commission officially approved of Williams’ new hires during a regular meeting at the Marion County Commission office in Hamilton. In February


Sunday, March 21, will mark one year since the first confirmed case of  SARS-CoV-2 was found in Marion County.
Hackleburg Mayor Daryl Colburn broke the news via social media on Saturday, March 21, 2020, that a resident in the town who traveled from another state recently had tested and confirmed.
“It’s crazy to think about,” Colburn said, “It doesn’t seem like a year ago.

SITEL building headed to auction

The SITEL building in Hamilton was vacated in November 2020.

HAMILTON - The former home of the call center SITEL seated in Hamilton’s Bedford Industrial Park will be sold by auction later this month.
SITEL vacated its Hamilton facility in late November and transitioned nearly all of its 400 employees to working from home.
Tulsa, Okla.-based Williams and Williams Real Estate Auctions is facilitating the auction on behalf of SITEL, which will take place on Tuesday, March 30, and will be available on-site or virtually.

Wisemiller named new Chief Exec.

GU-WIN - Tom Wisemiller of Marysville, Ohio, has been hired to take the helm at C3 of Northwest Alabama, Inc. the economic development alliance that represents Marion, Lamar & Fayette Counties.
David Thornell, President/CEO since C3’s inception in September 2010, announced his retirement in the fall of 2020 after 42 years in the economic development field. C3’s nationwide search for Thornell’s replacement spanned several months.

‘Never Give Up’

First-time author Myra Jones is shown seated with her book, “Never Give Up.”

HAMILTON -  Author Myra Jones has written her first book published on Dec. 23, 2020, titled “Never Give Up” as told to Jones by her uncle Drolan Chandler, who was a veteran and Prisoner of War (POW) during WWII who lived in Detroit.
Jones wrote the book after having several conversations with her uncle concerning his time during and after World War II.

The Arts are Alive at HMS and HHS!


Despite dealing with the challenges of COVID 19, the arts are thriving at Hamilton Middle School and Hamilton High School! Both schools are grantee schools that received Arts Education Initiative Grants from the Alabama State Department of Education.
The schools are in their second grantee cycle and have been awarded the grant again for the 2021-2022 school year. Both schools are currently offering Music, Visual Arts, Dance, Essentials of Acting, and Musical Theater.

USDA Extends Application Deadline for the Quality Loss Adjustment Program

MONTGOMERY - The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has extended the deadline from March 5 to April 9 for agricultural producers to apply for the Quality Loss Adjustment (QLA) Program because of recent winter storms and some clarifications to program rules. This program assists producers, including those here in Alabama who suffered crop quality losses due to qualifying 2018 and 2019 natural disasters.

Nineteen-gun burglary in Winfield

By LOUIS MELLINI | Staff Writer

WINFIELD - Approximately 19 weapons were stolen from a Winfield  residence on the night of Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020, and the Winfield Police Department is asking for individuals in the community to keep an eye out to return the stolen goods.

The guns and other items such as game cameras were secured in a Buffalo gun safe, which was also stolen during the burglary.

These stolen weapons included:

• 22 Caliber Heritage rough rider pistol - serial number 3HR157231

Hackleburg officials boost patrolman pay by $2

HACKLEBURG - Wage competition is heating up in the region as Hackleburg is boosting its patrolman’s pay by $2-an-hour.
Town councilors in Hackleburg voted unanimously during a meeting on Monday, Jan. 25, to boost the pay scale to $16 for patrolmen at the recommendation of Hackleburg Mayor Darryl Colburn who said other departments in the area are planning similar measures. The approved pay raise includes bumping the pay for the assistant chief and chief to $17 and $18, respectively.


New travel stop opens tomorrow

As one of the most highly-anticipated developments of the last two years, Hamilton’s new Love’s Travel Stop is set to begin operations tomorrow, Feb. 4.

The new location is seated right off of County Road 35 (Fulton Bridge) on River Road Drive, strategically positioned near Interstate 22’s Exit 14.

The $12 million, 20-acre facility has created about 50 local jobs and will operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week and 365 days a year, accompanied by an Arby’s sandwich restaurant and Speedco truck service center.

Dearen appointed as new member

Local State Farm Agent Mark Dearen has been appointed to the Marion County Board of Education.
The Marion County school officials met on Friday, Jan. 29, to appoint someone to serve in the District 3, Hamilton seat, replacing outgoing member Belinda McRae, who was elected last year to the State Board of Education.
The District 3 seat is already four years into the election cycle, meaning the position will be up for election in November 2022. However, qualification for the party primary elections will take place later this year.


What’s the future of Hamilton A&I?

As movement with Alabama’s prison system has begun to stir, the future for many of the state’s prison facilities seem uncertain, including that of the Hamilton Aged and Infirmed. [Scott Johnson/ STAFF]

Rep. Estes gathering leaders to weigh four options

HAMILTON - Shadows of concertina wire and armed guards regularly stretch across the drive-thru lane of the McDonald’s in Hamilton.
Those stopping through the restaurant for a quick meal often get a front-row seat to watch white-uniformed state prisoners playing basketball and gardening during recreation hours--an odd experience for passers-through, but nothing out of the ordinary for Marion County locals.

A new hope for a new Marion County Jail

HAMILTON -  The Marion County Commission welcomed Fayette-based architect Jim Berry, Technical Assistant Angela Berry, Senior Draftsman Roger Snyder and construction manager Andrew Jackson to discuss their plans for the Marion County Jail in Hamilton during a work session on Thursday, Dec. 10, at the Marion County Commission Office in Hamilton.
Marion County Sheriff Kevin Williams was also in attendance during the meeting to discuss his needs for the new jail facility.

Tombigbee receives five-year tax pass

HAMILTON - FreedomFiber will get a local boost in its journey to expand high-speed broadband internet service to northwest Alabama.
During a meeting on Monday, Dec. 7, the Hamilton City Council voted unanimously to provide Tombigbee Communications with a five-year abatement on its local three-cent sales-and-use tax in order to assist the company in its large-scale broadband intuitive.