Bill Britt: Newspapers: State Sanctioned Monopolies

January 19, 2012

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

For years select newspapers in Alabama have enjoyed what many have referred to as state-sanctioned monopoly. This is because only certain newspaper are allowed to print “legal notices.” Meaning that only newspapers within a county that meet certain federal and state standards are permitted to print state and local public notices.

These notices included, but are not restricted to, foreclosures, local and state ordinances and laws, adoptions, probating of wills and more. Each public notice must be printed only in a newspaper that is published in that county. The newspapers that have such authority have enjoyed tremendous profits over the years because a flaw in the Alabama law.
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Being National Champs Should Expand Beyond Football

January 17, 2012

By Lieutenant Governor Kay Ivey
January 2011 Op-Ed Column

For three years in a row, the state of Alabama has been home to the number one team in college football – the University of Alabama in 2009, Auburn University in 2010, and then on January 9th, Alabama triumphed over LSU for another national championship. Even the commentators covering the Alabama-LSU contest remarked what a feat it was for one state to produce national football champions three years in a row.
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Bill Britt: AEA Interview, If I Were Henry Mabrey

January 16, 2012

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

In the past week Henry Mabry met with the ‘Gadsden Times’ in which he held for the status quo positions. I wanted to imagine what the interview might have been like if someone with a hint of the current realities were to answer the ‘Times’ questions.

So, I decided to cast myself as the new head of the AEA and reply to the ‘Times’ inquires as a man who understands what day and what time it is actually. I have taken the basic questions asked and provide what I believe are the best answers as a start to working with the Governor and the Legislator toward a solution to the education problem as well as the state’s other problems.
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Bill Britt: Freedom: Up in Smoke

January 13, 2012

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

It has been recently reported that Democratic Sen. Vivian Davis Figures of Mobile will introduce a proposed constitutional amendment that would ban smoking in places of employment, public places and private clubs. Figures has tried for a number of years to pass bills restricting smoking in public places, but she has not been successful. Her legislation passed the Senate several times but could not gain enough support to pass in the Alabama House.
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Bill Britt: Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered

January 9, 2012

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

There are days when I find political maneuvering as baffling as Lady Gaga’s wardrobe.

While Gaga is obviously taking cues from her fairy godfather Elton John, is it not time for something new?

Shamefully, institutions and political organization are guilty of the same foolish imitation as the entertainment industry.

Michael Steele anyone? Did the GOP really think that having a man of African-American birth at the head of the RNC would give them standing alongside the first African-American president of the United States?
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Top Stories: Over-reported, under-reported and just right

December 31, 2011

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

This is the time of year that editors, writers and pundits try to list what they believe are the top stories of the past year. If the truth be known, people in the newsroom are not really all that concerned with the stories of the last year unless they hope to garner a prize or ask for a raise. Most are concerned with the next story, the big one that just might get away.
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Bill Britt: Laws and unintended consequences

December 26, 2011

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

As a general rule any law written by the hand of man is burdened with unintended consequences. Only the ten commandments handed down by God to Moses are without unintended consequences. Naturally a trial lawyer or the ACLU would sue God over the big ten but many don’t know Him or believe that He exists.

In light of this, it should come as no surprise that Alabama has laws that create problems beyond the imaginings of the lawmakers.
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Bill Britt: Political leaders must work together, but “No,” does not add to the solution

December 19, 2011

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

Benjamin Disraeli, one of Britain’s greatest prime ministers once said, “Desperation is sometimes as powerful an inspirer as genius.”
Now is a time for the Governor and Legislature of Alabama to be powerfully inspired. Faced with budget shortfalls, unemployment rates—while improving—are still too high for the present and an opposition not yet ready to face the realities of the present dilemma.

Over a year ago, the people of Alabama sent a message to Montgomery, we want a government with a plan, a conservative government that will make hard choices for hard times.
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Kay Ivey: New Job Figures Give Hope to Stimulating Economic Growth

December 16, 2011

December 2011 Op-Ed Column
By Lieutenant Governor Kay Ivey

Henry Ford once said, “Obstacles are those frightful things you can see when you take your eyes off your goal.” Those words ring true in Alabama as your elected leaders continue to find bold ways to stimulate the state’s economy during what have been some rocky and uncertain times. And things are looking up. Figures released Friday by the Alabama Department of Industrial Relations show Alabama’s unemployment rate for November at 8.7 percent, down from 9.8 percent in September, which represents five consecutive months of job growth. The even better news is that 38,000 more people in the state have jobs today than in January of this year.
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Bill Britt: Responsibilities of the Press

November 22, 2011

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

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