Retired Marine Colonel-turned-sculptor hopes to be write-in option for Republicans hesitant on Moore

November 28, 2017

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

Retired Marine Corps Col. Lee Busby, a former top aide to President Donald Trump’s Chief of Staff retired Gen. John Kelly, is coming out of a retirement defined by sculpting to honor fallen service members to launch a last-minute write-in effort for Alabama’s U.S. Senate seat against Republican nominee Roy Moore and Democrat Doug Jones.

Busby, who now lives in Tuscaloosa, said he isn’t satisfied with the two candidates on the ballot and wants to offer himself a more moderate alternative to the two men whom he says are too extreme for Alabama voters.

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UPDATE: Sources say Gov. Kay Ivey to seek full-term next year

August 15, 2017

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

Several high ranking lawmakers have confirmed to the Alabama Political Reporter that Gov. Kay Ivey will run for Governor in 2018. Ivey, who ascended to the Governor’s office after Robert Bentley fled the position under a cloud of scandal, is now poised to win the job in her own right.

Over the past few weeks, Ivey has reached out to influential lawmakers to inform them of her decision to run. She has received widespread support from Republican Legislators, especially Senators who have worked with her over the last six years. “She doing an excellent job as Governor and she has my support; which is what I told her,” said a long serving Senator who spoke with Ivey last week.

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US Rep. Martha Roby promotes her Balanced Budget Amendment

August 10, 2017

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Tuesday, August 8, 2017, US Representative Martha Roby (R-Montgomery) says we need a Balanced Budget Amendment, and has written one herself.

Congresswoman Roby wrote to constituents and supporters, “Friends, with the end of the fiscal year approaching on September 30, Congress will soon begin finalizing appropriations Legislation to fund government operations. I’m proud of the work the House Appropriations Committee has done to approve Legislation to properly fund critical programs, while cutting wasteful spending and bending the Federal Budget curve down for a change.”

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Chad Carlough announced as Byrne’s new Chief of Staff

March 30, 2017

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Tuesday, March 28, 2017, US Representative Bradley Byrne (R-Montrose) announced that Chad Carlough will serve as his new Chief of Staff and Seth Morrow will serve as his Deputy Chief of Staff.

Congressman Byrne said, “Chad and Seth have served Alabama’s First Congressional District exceptionally well in their current roles, and I have no doubt their great work will continue in these new positions. I truly believe we have the most talented and hardest working team on Capitol Hill, and these changes will only further strengthen our efforts.”
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Longtime educator Jimmy H. Baker appointed ACCS Chancellor

March 16, 2017

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

The Alabama Community College System board of trustees voted on Wednesday to appoint acting chancellor Jimmy H. Baker as chancellor starting April 1.

Baker, who has served as interim chancellor for more than six months, replaces Mark Heinrich, who retired after being sidelined by a prolonged illness.

“Jimmy Baker has done a tremendous job of leading the system during the chancellor’s absence and has been far more than a place-holder,” said Al Thompson, Vice Chairman of the Community College system’s Board of Trustees. “As we searched for a permanent replacement, we realized we could never find a chancellor who would be more experienced or prepared than Jimmy Baker.”
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Senator Strange appoints former Chief Deputy as Chief of Staff

February 13, 2017

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

Many questions surround the appointment of Luther Strange as US Senator, but Strange hiring Kevin Turner as his Chief of Staff is an unseen turn of events.

Turner served as Strange’s Chief Deputy until allegations of dubious actions in the criminal investigation of former Speaker Mike Hubbard surfaced. During the heat of the inquiry, sources from both within and outside of the Attorney General’s Office confirmed that Turner was orchestrating a plot to remove chief prosecutor Matt Hart from the Lee County Grand Jury investigation.
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Britt Puts Another Crack in the Glass Ceiling as Chief of Staff

September 13, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—At a time when Democrats are trumpeting the cracks made in the glass ceiling separating women from the highest positions in government, Alabama’s Republican Senior Senator Richard Shelby, quietly opened a new fissure by hiring Katie Boyd Britt as his new Chief of Staff.

“Katie is a talented and hardworking professional, whose energy and knowledge of the State will be an asset to my office,” said Sen. Shelby of her hiring. “I am excited to have her rejoin our team as my new Chief of Staff, and I look forward to her work to help me serve the people of Alabama.”
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Hammett Out of Governor’s Administration

October 5, 2015

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Friday, October 2, Alabama Governor Robert Bentley (R) announced changes to a new leadership team for the Governor’s Office, with the goal of continuing to serve the citizens of Alabama, by creating jobs and making State government more effective and efficient.
 
Governor Bentley said in a statement, “Each member of our senior executive staff plays an important role in helping me serve the people of this state.  Our team brings a wealth of knowledge and experience, as well as a heart for the people of we serve, to the Governor’s Office. The leadership team will work to strengthen our efforts to make Alabama stronger and better for all Alabamians.”
 
Administration Chief of Staff Seth Hammett is leaving the cabinet to return to the private sector.
Gov. Bentley said, “I appreciate Seth Hammett’s service as Chief of Staff, and his dedication to serve in my administration.  We made great strides in economic development and workforce training during the 2015 Regular Session, and I appreciate Seth’s guidance and experience in both fields.”
 
Seth Hammett said, “I want to thank Governor Bentley for his trust in me and the opportunity to serve as his Chief of Staff over the last year.  Under his leadership and direction, we have made many improvements the way State government operates and have tackled many difficult issues together.  It has been a richly rewarding experience to serve in this capacity and once again, work for the people of this State.”
 
Governor Bentley is forming a new leadership management team responsible for carrying out the core operations of the Governor’s Office.  The team will be co-led by Deputy Chief of Staff for Administration Blake Hardwich and Deputy Chief of Staff for Policy Jon Barganier.  Barganier will serve as the primary point of contact for the Governor’s Office.
 
Seth Hammett was a longtime Democratic member of the State House of Representatives and was the last Democratic Speaker of the House.  As Speaker Hammett was able to cobble together votes.  Those abilities were tested in the Bentley administration which was trying to get Republicans and Democrats to come together behind a plan to raise taxes by as much as $550 million a year.  That went nowhere.  Most Democrats opposed the tax increases because the program did not include a lottery or Medicaid expansion.  Most Republicans opposed the tax increases because it violated their core principles of small government.  In the end only $82 million in tax increases were passed…much less that the $150 million a year in trust fund budget raid money that ran out in 2015.
 
Many Republicans were critical of why Bentley would invest so much power in any Democrat and felt that Alabamians elected Republicans to lead so top jobs should go to Republicans.

Palmer Announces More Staff

January 5, 2015

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

On Thursday, December 18, Congressman-elect Palmer announced the hiring of his District Director, Field Director and Constituent Service Liaison.

Palmer announced that former Birmingham Post Herald sports writer Ray Melick will join Gary’s District. Melick was a long-time sportswriter, as the Alabama beat writer and later lead sports columnist for the Birmingham Post-Herald, radio personality, and had a weekly TV sports show before joining the Birmingham News as sports columnist in 2003.
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Palmer Announces More Staff

December 22, 2014

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

On Thursday, December 18, Congressman-elect Palmer announced the hiring of his District Director, Field Director and Constituent Service Liaison.

Palmer announced that former Birmingham Post-Herald lead sports columnist, radio and television personality, Ray Melick will join as District Director. Melick has spent 27 years writing and talking about sports in Birmingham.

Melick left Birmingham media in 2010 to be the Director of Communication for BP’s Gulf Coast Restoration Organization in the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon incident. Since 2013, Melick has been the Public Affairs Manager for Georgia-Pacific in Mississippi. Melick and his wife, Mary Grace, have three children and live in Vestavia. They are members of Mountain Brook Community Church, where Melick has been an Elder and Community Group leader.
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