Ethics Commission could pull back veil on BCA conference donations

February 7, 2018

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

The Alabama Ethics Commission will vote on an opinion Wednesday morning that will change the way multiple-sponsor events report gifts to lawmakers and state employees, a ruling that would close a loophole in Alabama’s ethics laws that has benefited the Business Council of Alabama.

For years now, the BCA has held an annual summer retreat at Point Clear, at which lawmakers are wined and dined and provided free rooms for themselves and their spouses. To cover the costs, the BCA solicits donations from a number of sponsors.

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BCA home sold to Association of County Commissions’ fund

October 3, 2017

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

Located at 2 North Jackson St. in Montgomery, The Business Center of Alabama is home to the Business Council of Alabama, which figuratively and literally enjoys a commanding view of the Alabama State House. Given the swagger with which BCA Chairman Billy Canary comports himself, it would be easy to think BCA owns all its surveys, when in fact, it doesn’t even own the building it calls home.
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Business Council of Alabama endorses Luther Strange ahead of primary

September 4, 2017

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Friday, the Board of Directors of the Business Council of Alabama announced that they have endorsed U.S. Sen. Luther Strange in the special primary election runoff for U.S. Senate.

BCA Chairman Jeff Coleman said in a statement, “The Business Council of Alabama is proud to endorse U.S. Sen. Luther Strange in his bid to continue to serve the people of Alabama in the United States Senate. Sen. Strange has built his reputation on being a tireless advocate for the growth and progress of the state of Alabama. The Business Council of Alabama believes Luther Strange has the experience and proven leadership needed in the halls of Congress.”

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Want Mike Hubbard on your voicemail?

March 16, 2017

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

What’s a convicted felon to do while out on bond?

If you’re the disgraced felon, and former Speaker of the House Mike Hubbard, you offer to be “the voice” of products and services. In a letter widely distributed to media companies, Hubbard wrote, “Performing voice-overs for various projects has been one of my favorite and most enjoyable jobs during my career in collegiate sports and broadcasting.”
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Alabama Supreme Court’s Actions: Justice or Machiavellian Scheme

October 26, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

The Judicial Inquiry Commission (JIC) and several justices on the Alabama Supreme Court are attempting, it appears, to avoid further unwanted scrutiny of their conduct in the case against Chief Justice Roy Moore.

The Commission, commonly referred to as the JIC, is hoping to steer clear of another growing controversy by dismissing the complaint against Associate Justice Tom Parker, who, like Chief Justice Moore, spoke publicly against same-sex marriage.
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Ethics Commission: Not Subject to Ethics Laws

October 12, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

Here’s a little-known fact: The Alabama Ethics Commission is not governed by the laws it is charged with enforcing.

That was made abundantly clear when Commissioner Judge Charles Price voted with a conflict of interest at an Oct. 5th Commission meeting. The conflict arose when he voted yes on an Advisory Opinion that permitted the City of Montgomery to give money to the local Chamber of Commerce. Price, a retired Montgomery Circuit Judge, is a board member of the chamber and will shortly become its president.
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Who Has the Moral Authority to Lead Ethics Reform?

September 19, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

Even before former Speaker Mike Hubbard’s conviction on 12 counts of public corruption, due to criminal ethics violations, his minions were spinning a narrative that the laws, under which he was indicted, were hastily prepared and passed without question (merely a deceptive plan to cast doubt on his indictment).

To say that the 2010 ethics laws passed rapidly and without the body’s full understanding may be right, but to believe they were not conceived without purpose and understanding by those wrote them, is a lie.
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A Guilty Verdict Offering Hope

June 23, 2016

By Jack Campbell

An atomic bomb of sorts was dropped on Alabama on June 10th when a jury in Lee County found Mike Hubbard guilty on twelve counts of public corruption. The judge will impose sentencing early next month which could, most likely, include prison time. Finally, it can be said aloud that Mike Hubbard really was a crook after all, even though lone cries from people like Congressman Mike Rogers have been silenced.
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Republicans Support Higher Gas Taxes

March 18, 2016

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

On Wednesday, March 17, the Alabama House Transportation, Utilities, and Infrastructure Committee voted for favorable passage of House Bill 394, sponsored by State Representative Mac McCutcheon (R-Huntsville) that would raise fuel taxes by six cents a gallon, and includes future gas tax increases beyond that to keep generating higher taxes for road construction, as other southern states raise their fuel taxes.

State Representative Will Ainsworth (R-Guntersville) opposed the bill in committee. Rep. Ainsworth said, “I voted no on this bill in committee today. I’m not in favor of the hard-working people of Alabama having to pay any more taxes, and this is a tax on everyone in the State.
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Senate Passes Bill To Divide Up Possible New Gas Tax

March 8, 2016

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

On Thursday, March 3, the Alabama Senate passed Senate Bill 180, sponsored by State Senator Gerald Dial (R-Lineville). SB180 divides up how the money would be spent if the legislature passes any increases in the state taxes on a gallon of fuel, as many powerful special interests are advocating.

Senator Dial said on the floor of the Senate that his bill doesn’t create a new committee it just keeps using the ATRIP committee we already have. Dial said that each county will get a minimum of $2.5 million each and they don’t have to provide a match. After that first $32 million the rest of the money will be divided under the existing formula we use today.
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