Late in the night of April 13, an EF-1 tornado touched down in western Marion County.
It is a foregone conclusion that a Republican will take out our anomaly, liberal Democratic Sen. Doug Jones, next year. The question is, which Republican will be the nominee and capture the seat?
We received several phone calls this past week concerning our coverage of the Guin City Council meeting in the Wednesday, April 10, edition (Meeting ends early amid shouting, finger-pointing).
Those who fielded the calls were told they didn’t like how this story was handled, the harsh manner in which it was presented. In fact, our staff was told we actually reported too much.
Well, we didn’t like it, either.
Covering meetings when tempers are flaring and conversations and discussions are frayed are not enjoyable for our reporters.
On Friday, April 5, I attended the first keynote address during the 27th Annual Breaking the Cycle of Abuse Conference at Bevill State Community College-Hamilton.
The keynote was all about behavior in children, especially those who had been abused.
Thanks to training and quick action in Winfield on March 30, a choking death was prevented. Devin Smith, a pharmacist, performed the Heimlich maneuver on Todd Fetter after food became lodged in Fetter’s windpipe.
According to the National Safety Council, an average of 5,000 people die each year from choking. Many of those deaths could have been prevented with the right knowledge and training, the kind of knowledge and training that both men possessed.
Tax Day, April 15, has now come and gone. To my own surprise, though, that is not what has inspired this column.
One of the definitions of “farce” is “an empty or patently ridiculous act, proceeding, or situation.”
I can think of no better example than the effort by Sen. Del Marsh to repeal the Alabama College & Career Ready standards.
First Marsh was a staunch supporter of these standards. In an article by the Business Council of Alabama on April 23, 2013, describing a capitol rally in support of the standards, Marsh is quoted as telling reporters that any repeal effort was “off the table.”
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.
There is no question that Gov. Kay Ivey’s infrastructure/gas tax program was the cornerstone issue of this legislative session. This monumental legislation will be a tremendous enhancement for Alabama’s economic development for decades to come.
What? You don’t want to die and go back to spirit...to become invisible? Allow me to explain...
“Liars are not believed even when they are telling the truth.”
This is the phrase coined by Greek storyteller Aesop for the moral of his famous story, which we have come to commonly refer to as “The Boy Who Cried Wolf.”
In my last Palmer’s Almanac (Journal Record, Feb. 20), I traced the evolution of almanacs from the beginning of recorded time to the founding of the United States of America. As American expansion moved west, the publication of almanacs soon followed.
Almanacs began as inscriptions on clay tablets about 5,000 years ago in the fertile Euphrates valley in modern-day Iraq.
Ancient farmers kept records of the seasons, the weather and the climate as a way of predicting when Spring planting should begin and, hopefully, increasing the next season’s harvest.
My parents were young people during the Great Depression. While my maternal grandparents had owned the town grocery store and a large rooming house, complete with “hired-girls” to help, they were now relegated to living with their children, in a miner’s shack. It had a dirt floor and whatever they could find to stuff into the cracks in the walls.
I believe the World War II may have been the relief our nation found to overcome the abject poverty the Depression visited on our world.
After their successful special five-day Special Session, the Legislature has been in their Regular Session for a few weeks now. The session will end in June so it is about one-fourth over.
Almost one-third of the members are new, freshmen if you will. Even though they are, for the most part, a bright and talented group, they are still wet behind the ears when it comes to legislative ways.
A little over two weeks ago, Hamilton Mayor Bob Page commended the Resource Conservation and Development council during the council’s meeting to discuss 2018’s projects.
Throughout last year, RC&D has funded projects ranging from buying computers and printers for schools and police departments to funding paving projects for school parking lots as they had at Brilliant High School in 2018.
The public’s business should be done in public. We have sounded this charge time and time again over the years. In the wake of a curious situation that the Hamilton City Council was faced with, we believe it’s a great opportunity to sound this charge again.
The Hamilton council, at its meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 19, was tasked with repealing a resolution for water department raises which it had swept through for approval at its previous meeting on Feb. 4. It then turned around and passed a clarifying resolution, correcting an error included in the previous ordinance.
The governor has been inaugurated and the Legislature has had its organizational session. The quadrennium has begun. Therefore, it is time for our state officials to get to work.
I’m a “hurry wart.” That’s one who’s always in a hurry to complete one project because the next one is giving a hard nudge for recognition. And when it does, I’m on it like a flash.
The Alabama Education Association (AEA) was the most powerful and influential political organization in Alabama for close to three decades. The late Dr. Paul Hubbert was the builder and king of this powerful organization.
I’ve only lived in Hamilton, Alabama, for around a year and a half now, so I guess I’m still relatively new to small-town living.
We cover meetings, events, games played by our children and yes, even courtroom proceedings.
We don’t make up the stories you read. To the very best of our ability, we cover any of these events--great or small, of the utmost importance to many or only important to a select few.
Those were the days...
I got to Hamilton about five hours before the basketball reunion.
I met teammate Phil Norris for lunch. The lunch was good, but the reminiscing was better.
The Alabama Legislature has met for its organizational session and elected its leadership for the next four years.
Both the House and Senate leadership remain essentially the same as the last quadrennium.
While our efforts to remain in contact with those who live within the district have not slowed since our last writing, we have also been required to focus time on organizational efforts in Montgomery.
As the new quadrennium crests in Alabama government, everybody looks toward a new beginning. There is a new fresh four years ahead for the newly-elected leaders. They are overwhelmingly Republican.
Two areas in Marion County have received federal designation as Opportunity Zones, a program established recently through the passage of President Donald Trump’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.
Nationwide, there is speculation that the program will be the largest investment program in history, generating as much as $100 billion, which will all be funneled into low-income areas to help provide boosts in economic development.
Per the regulations, Gov. Kay Ivey was given the responsibility of choosing a portion of the state’s low-income areas to be designated as “zones.”
Preparations are being made to take the 2020 Census. This process is not just a fun game to spell out demographic changes and interesting tidbits about us as Americans. It is a very important mandate dictated by the Constitution.
Most of us heard the parable of the Good Samaritan at an early age. Probably in a Sunday School class. And in Alabama, it was probably a Baptist Sunday School.
Last week Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey announced in a memorandum to the state comptroller that tax-payer dollars intended to feed county inmates should go into a county account and not the sheriff’s personal account.
Alabama sheriffs are given $1.75 to feed each of the inmates in their care. The sheriff gets to keep any leftover money without any oversight as to where that money goes or how it is spent.
The four best will be Troy King versus Steve Marshall in the Attorney General’s race; the Lt. Governor runoff between Twinkle Cavanaugh and Will Ainsworth will be interesting; the Agriculture Commissioner race between Rick Pate and Gerald Dial will be good; and it will be interesting to see if Bobby Bright ousted Martha Roby from Congress in the 2nd District.
There has been a lot of talk in the media recently of another looming civil war in America. I don’t believe it will happen. Americans are too smart to be tricked twice and suffer the death and devastation like that of the American Civil War (1861-1865).
- All boils down to who votes, but look for 10-12% turnout
Well folks, if you vote in the Republican primary you may want to go back to the polls next week and finish selecting the GOP nominees for several important state offices.
- All elections are held with future in mind
We return to the polls this coming Tuesday, July 17.
If you’re a Republican or cast a ballot along the GOP lines on June 5, you’ll have several seats, both locally and statewide, to decide.
We at the Journal Record appreciate the benefits of social media, like the rest of the world does. It’s a great way to keep up with family, friends and So-and-So that you haven’t seen since high school.
We like looking at sweet family pictures, we like to see who’s dating who and to make sure all of our friends are still married. You know...the social media basics.
When you are dealing with taxpayers and voters, it’s not business anymore, it’s politics. And the foundation of politics—at least democratic politics—is communication. I think there have been tie-ups this first half of 2018 because things have tried to be accomplished unilaterally—not politically.
Our fourth president, James Madison, once said, “If men were angels, no government would be necessary.” Alas, most politicians have little to worry about, men and women are not angels; thus those we elect to political office will never be without a job.
Otto Whittaker wrote the following essay, “I Am the Nation,” in 1955 as a public relations advertisement for the Norfolk and Western Railway. The message found in Mr.
Last week, the newly formed Bevill State Community College (BSCC) Hamilton Campus Legislative Advisory Task Force met behind closed doors with BSCC President Kim Ennis. The task force, composed of local government, civic and business leaders, gave Ennis a vote of “no-confidence” prior to its meeting with the recently-named president.
Recently it has come to the Journal Record’s attention that a misguided man has been copying and pasting our (allow us to make this plain--OUR) stories, to his website, which he proudly calls a “Media/News Company.”
At the footer of our webpage, we have a disclaimer which reads the following: “Printing, broadcasting or any other use of this content is strictly prohibited without the express written consent of the publisher. All rights reserved.”
A former Hamilton resident, Sheri Goggans, 69, was kidnapped at knifepoint while visiting family in the city. Her abductor, Marshall Lee Gray, 33, had only been out of prison for four days. He only served 38 months of a 20 years prison sentence for first-degree rape.
Thankfully, Goggans escaped alive, but not without being stabbed in her forearm as Gray reportedly was trying to cut her throat. This has left us with some sobering questions.
Sometimes we need to stop and give thanks to the people who have inspired us to become better at what we do.
Back in April I gave a presentation to the Marion County Genealogical Society. In the middle of that presentation, which focused on my ancestor, Joseph M. Palmer, I realized that I owe William Stanley Hoole a debt of gratitude.
This is not just a gubernatorial year in the Heart of Dixie.
We have every constitutional office up for election, which includes lieutenant governor, attorney general, secretary of state, state treasurer, state auditor and agriculture commissioner.