Alabama Accountability Act:  By the numbers

November 1, 2017

By Larry Lee
Education Matters

Now that we have several years of experience with the Alabama Accountability Act, let’s look as closely as possible at the numbers available to see what’s been done.

The legislation creating AAA was passed early in 2013 under rather mysterious conditions. Basically one bill went into a conference committee and a radically different one emerged a few hours later. It was as if you went to pick up your prom date, she met you at the door of her house all cute and bubbly and told you to wait a moment while she got her coat. And minutes later her mother shows up, wrinkles and all, and says “let’s go have fun.”

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Barry Moore says that the “Political Establishment” hates him

August 25, 2017

By Brandon Moseley 
Alabama Political Reporter

Tuesday, August 22, 2017, State Representative Barry Moore (R-Enterprise) is running for Congress and he is emphasizing his “outsider” credentials.

Rep. Moore said in a statement, “Well, it was no secret before, but it was made clear once again: the political Establishment hates me.  Last weekend, when one of our states largest lobbying entities invited politicians to come “wine and dine” at the beach, it was made abundantly clear that I would not be welcome.”
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BCA excludes the Zeiglers from Annual Governmental Affairs Conference

August 11, 2017

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Thursday, August 10, 2017, both State Auditor Jim Zeigler (R) and his wife, State Board of Education member Jackie Zeigler (R), were excluded from the Annual Governmental Affairs Conference of the Business Council of Alabama (BCA).  The couple were the only two statewide elected officials excluded from the plush event at the Grand Hotel in Point Clear.  17 members of the State Legislature were also excluded this year.

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Breaking: Alabama Power pulls support from BCA Governmental Affairs Conference

August 9, 2017

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

The Alabama Political Reporter has confirmed Alabama Power Company executives notified Bill Canary, CEO of the Business Council of Alabama, that the power giant would not support the upcoming BCA Governmental Affairs Conference in Point Clear and that its employees would not attend the event, according to sources with high level access.

Those with knowledge of the incident say Canary was stunned by the call, querying why Alabama Power was abandoning the conference. He was informed that there were a number of reasons but chief among them was his leadership style, which has led to many Legislative failures. Insiders say the company sees Canary as a liability that it can no longer ignore.

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Politics continue to overrule ethics

May 15, 2017

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

The State Legislature begins its four-day sprint to the finish this Tuesday. To-date, 1025 bills were introduced over the 27 days, and still, there is much more to be accomplished. The Legislative leadership hopes to sine die on Friday, ending a drama-filled Session that saw Governor Robert Bentley resign, Governor Ivey sworn in, topping the melee of competing interests that always seems to accompany a Legislative Session.
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Cowardly politics and the almost certain death of the Autism Therapy Bill

May 9, 2017

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

The Autism therapy bill is politics at its worst.

Actually, scratch that.

It’s politics in its most cowardly form.

Because right now, the bill that would require insurance companies in Alabama to offer coverage of Autism therapy is all but dead.

Not because the public doesn’t want it – they quite clearly do.

Not because a majority of Legislators are against it – it passed 100-0 in the House and would win a similar landslide in the Senate.
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Gas tax bill expected on floor of House today

April 13, 2017

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

House Bill 487 sponsored by Representative Bill Poole (R-Tuscaloosa) raises taxes on fuel in three phases across Alabama over the next seven years. HB487 is on the calendar to be voted on in the Alabama House of Representatives today. The money would be used to pay down a massive $2.4 billion new bond debt.

State Representative Isaac Whorton (R-Valley) asked Facebook followers and constituents, “Please take a look at the gas tax bill below. Short version is that this bill would provide for a 4 cent tax increase in 2017, 2 cent in 2019, and 3 cent automatic increase in 2024 unless there is a joint resolution to remove the 3 cent increase. The bill would authorize the issuance of a total of $2.4 Billion dollars in a bond or a series of bonds to be paid over the next 20 years. Bond rates are about 4.25 percent at this time. The debt service at that rate would be approximately $179 million annually if issued as one bond…if the rates were to increase to 5 percent, the debt service climbs to $191 million. Of course, there are always costs involved in borrowing money and a fair estimate of that cost is around 1 percent of the bond amount. Half of the borrowed amount would be divided between counties and municipalities and half would go to ALDOT. The percentage division between counties and cities is currently being negotiated (started at 20 percent to cities bit I think it may be 30 percent now).”
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Will Poarch Creek casino money return Hubbard to power?

April 12, 2017

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

New information about a reported agreement between convicted felon Mike Hubbard and the Poarch Band of Creek Indians (PCI) came to light over the weekend. The Tribe has is believed to have agreed to pay all of Hubbard’s legal fees past, present, and future if the once-powerful Speaker of the House helps them elect a majority of like-minded lawmakers who will grant a Compact, giving them Vegas-style casino gambling rights in Alabama.
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New gas tax bill introduced

April 10, 2017

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Supporters of raising the taxes on Alabama’s gasoline and diesel fuel have introduced another bill that they hope to pass this session while all the focus is on the impeachment of Governor Robert Bentley. The Alabama Road and Bridge Rehabilitation and Improvement Authority would be established to finance road and bridge rehabilitation and improvements and issue $2.4 billion in new bond debt. All the new tax money would be pledged to pay down the debt. Supporters are calling this massive building works project ATRIP-II and would be administered similarly to the old ATRIP program. House Bill 487 was introduced by State Representative Bill Poole (R-Tuscaloosa).
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Nixonian plots, half-wit schemes

November 14, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

The scheme to defame the State’s former top law enforcement officer, Spencer Collier, is very similar to the New Jersey “Bridgegate” trial that has seen two of Governor Chris Christies’s allies convicted of using state resources and personnel for political retribution.

Now, an investigation by Senators Gerald Dial and Quintin Ross has discovered that a “dirty tricks” operation used State assets and employees to derail the election of Dr. Craig Pouncey as Alabama’s school superintendent in much the same way.
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