Tax Day, April 15, has now come and gone. To my own surprise, though, that is not what has inspired this column.
As I observe the Legislature, it occurs to me that I am getting older. A lot of the legislators and lobbyists I have known over the years have moved on.
BLUE SPRINGS, MISS. - Three are dead after a plane crashed in Union County, Miss., over the weekend.
Union County Sheriff Jimmy Edwards identified the deceased as co-pilot Tommy Hue Nix, his wife, Merline Roberts, and co-pilot Jarrod Holloway.
The Guin City Hall office confirmed that Tommy and Merline Nix resided in the Fayette County portion of Guin. Holloway was a resident of Booneville, Miss., according to Edwards.
WINFIELD- Zion Missionary Baptist Church Pastor Paul Gray is still trying to process the chain of events that occurred on Sunday, April 7.
Before lightning struck his church at around 1:45 a.m. that morning, Paul Gray was the interim pastor. Hours later, after a vote by church members, he became the pastor.
“We had already planned the vote for April 7 two or three months ago,” Gray said. “I don’t know whether that was a bad omen or not,” Gray said on Monday, one day after the vote and the lightning strike.
WASHINGTON, D.C. -
MONROE COUNTY, MISS. - Both a pilot and passenger sustained minor injuries after their small plane crashed after departing from Hamilton.
According to a National Transportation Safety Board Aviation accident report, on Friday, March 29, a Piper PA28 airplane departed from the Marion County-Rankin Fite Airport in Hamilton on a personal flight at approximately 5:15 p.m.
HAMILTON - The Eighth Annual “We Love Hamilton Clean Up Day” has been scheduled to take place on Saturday morning, April 27, with volunteers first being fed a free pancake breakfast.
Last year, more than 75 bags of litter—using 60-gallon bags—were picked up by more than 90 participants.
All cleanup volunteers will meet at the Hamilton United Methodist Church, where the Hamilton Lions Club will be serving food and registration will be held in the fellowship hall.
GUIN- The annual Guin spring cleanup day will be held on Saturday, April 27, and Guin councilman Bobby Bellew is hoping to have a larger turnout than he’s seen in recent years.
“The most we’ve ever had is 55 or 60 participants and so it’s my goal this year to really top that number so we can have a larger impact on the community,” Bellew said.
Bellew said he is excited about the number of citizens, schools groups, civic groups, church groups, community leaders and local business that have already committed to participate in the annual cleanup day.
HAMILTON - Grant monies are being sought in the City of Hamilton’s effort to prepare for an incoming Love’s Travel Stop & Country Store, which was announced in January.
The Hamilton City Council unanimously agreed at its Monday, April 1, meeting to file applications seeking $300,000 in grant monies through a Community Development Block Grant and Appalachian Regional Commission grant.
The council also pledged $256,593 to cover the remaining costs of the project, which is projected to be more than $555,000.
HAMILTON/WINFIELD - Birmingham-based Blue Skies Medical will be hosting two screening events on Friday, April 19, in Marion County.
HAMILTON - Sonia Martin, with Kids to Love, an organization dedicated to finding foster children permanent homes, opened the 27th Annual Breaking the Cycle of Abuse (BTCOA) conference with a keynote address on Friday, April 5, at Bevill State Community College-Hamilton.
Martin presented her keynote address discussing Behavior 101, in which she covered lying, cheating, stealing, manipulation, need for control, violence, aggression and hoarding.
Despite forthcoming gas tax increases, one official is confident that Alabama gas prices will remain in the Top 10 for cheapest gas prices in the country.
In an interview with the Journal Record, American Automobile Association (AAA) spokesman Clay Ingram noted that Alabama is currently tied with Mississippi and Arkansas for the cheapest gas prices in the nation, with gas costing an average of $2.44 per gallon for the month of April.
The national average for gas jumped a nickle in the week of April 8 to $2.74 a gallon—eight cents more than this time last year.
The City of Hamilton is living up to its official slogan: “Small Town Living at its Best.”
Relocation website and blog Move Buddha ranked Hamilton as the most popular Alabama town to relocate to in 2019.
“Large cities like Montgomery and Birmingham may have a lot of allure, but they also come with a fairly hefty cost of living,” wrote Move Buddha media specialist Tyler Wood. “People are beginning to see the benefits of living in smaller and mid-sized cities.”
HAMILTON - Ahead of its 55th summer camping season, Maywood Christian Camp has announced a new program aimed at college-aged students.
In a March Facebook post, the camp announced that it was launching Lift University, a four-day camping experience for young adults designed to challenge, renew and empower them.
The inaugural Lift U will take place Sunday night through Thursday morning, Aug. 4-8, and be an additional 10th week of camp for Maywood.
GUIN - What began as a discussion regarding fire hydrants ended in a shouting match, finger pointing and the abrupt end to the Guin City Council’s Monday, April 1, meeting.
The uproar arose after mayor Max Maddox took up the third item on the meeting’s agenda--the repair of fire hydrants.
The city has been compiling a list of hydrants around the town that need repairs.
Maddox said that he had made contact with a hydrant repairman in Tuscaloosa.
WINFIELD- An otherwise routine lunch became a struggle for life when a piece of food got lodged in a chiropractor’s throat at the Pizza Bar in Winfield on Friday, March 30.
Chiropractor Todd Fetter was enjoying the ham and cheese sandwich, a well-known item on the restaurant’s menu, when he began choking.
“I couldn’t talk and I couldn’t breathe. There was no air exchange one way or the other. I was in trouble,” Fetter said.
HAMILTON - New road repair equipment could improve Hamilton’s city-road management, according to Hamilton Street Superintendent Mike Johnson.
Johnson met with the Hamilton City Council at a work session on Thursday, March 28, and was asked to give an overview of the status of Hamilton’s city-owned streets.
Hamilton Mayor Bob Page told the council that he and Johnson took time recently to drive city streets and tour the Hamilton Street Department shop.
WINFIELD - In an effort to rein in the late payment of garbage bills, the Winfield City council passed a resolution that increases the monetary penalty on a late payment.
“Mayor, we’re having some issues with people not paying their garbage bills in a timely manner,” Winfield City Attorney Todd Atkinson said, introducing the resolution at the council’s Tuesday, April 2, meeting.
HAMILTON - The Hamilton City Council has respectfully declined an offer for a piece of Marion County history.
The council, citing the large costs involved, voted 0-6 against accepting a donation of the small, Fite Law Office, which sits nearby on the opposite side of 10th Avenue Southwest from Hamilton City Hall.
The Fite Law Office was the workplace of Earnest Baxter Fite, father of the late Rankin Fite, who later became a legendary speaker of the Alabama House of Representatives.
HAMILTON - Fishermen have been encouraged to abide by restrictions at a public pond.
Hamilton Councilwoman Tami Lewis Williams made a public announcement at a Hamilton City Council meeting on Monday, April 1, reminding anglers that fishing at the Bedford Industrial Park duck pond is not allowed.
The councilwoman said that she has received complaints about people fishing there, which has apparently resulted in some of the ducks being injured.