Will Bentley face the Hangman’s noose?

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

It may be too late for Governor Robert Bentley to save himself as the gallows of impeachment’s trap door is oiled and ready. There is, however, a chance that the man, Robert Bentley, may be spared the Hangman’s noose; but even that outcome is tenuous at best.

Bentley, like so many men before him, fails to grasp that it is not his alleged affair with the married former staffer, Rebekah Caldwell Mason, or using his position as Governor to destroy perceived political enemies, such as former Law Enforcement Chief Spencer Collier. Hubris is his undoing.
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Judging Bentley with apparent conflicts of interest

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

The next hearing of the Alabama Ethics Commission could prove significant as sources close to the commission believe that some of the ethics complaints filed against Governor Robert Bentley will be presented.

If the evidence submitted at April 5 meeting shows probable cause, it would still require a vote by the Commission to forward the matter to the Attorney General’s office or the appropriate District Attorney for presentation to a grand jury.
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Lame Duck Governor wants prisons

INSIDE THE STATEHOUSE
by Steve Flowers

The premier issue of this year’s legislative session will be whether to borrow a massive amount of money to build new prisons in the state. This initiative appears to be our lame duck Governor Robert Bentley’s primary agenda.

Last year Bentley proposed an $800 million bond issue for new prisons. He has come forward with a similar proposal this year. His plan would close all existing prisons and replace them with three new super men’s prisons and one smaller women’s prison.
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New prisons off-the-books, unaccountable to the Legislature and public

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

The funding method proposed to build four new super-max-style prisons, under the Alabama Prison Transformation Initiative Act (APTI), will stop the public from voicing its opinion while keeping the almost one billion dollars borrowed off the books and in the hands of a very small group.

Under Section 14-2-6 the Alabama Corrections Institution Finance Authority governs the financial aspects of the State’s prison system. The Code of Alabama allows the Authority to create a public Corporation that has the power to issue bonds to build prisons and then lease the Prisons it owns to the Authority. The public corporation consists of the Governor, the Commissioner of Corrections, the Director of Finance, the Lieutenant Governor, and the Attorney General as determined by Code of Alabama Section 14-2-2 through Section 14-2-6
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Bentley pushes for control over tech service laden with cash and immense trove of data

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

The Office of Governor Robert Bentley wants one more chance to create a powerful agency with big money, loose contracts, and a prying eye into the vast state data network.

Once again, Bentley’s administration is proposing legislation that will create the Office of Information Technology (OIT) as a stand-alone agency, which will absorb the Information Services Division (ISD), that was, until recently, closely guarded by the Department of Finance.
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Questions hang over massive prison bill

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

The push to build four new correctional facilities at the cost of $800 million will soon begin in earnest. Still, many questions are left unanswered by legislations known as the Alabama Prison Transformation Initiative (APTI). The plan at present says the estimated $1.5 billion bond issuance will be paid by savings in the ADOC budget over the next 30 years. It also assumes proper medical and mental health care will result by consolidating facilities, and that the new high-tech prisons will reduce prison staffing needs. Governor Robert Bentley and Alabama Department of Corrections (ADOC) Commissioner Jeff Dunn are warning lawmakers of an imminent threat of Federal intervention if actions are not taken immediately.
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What to do about Bentley?

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

Vice, vainer and corruption has left Alabama a leaderless State, but there is hope that some with integrity will step forward to fill the void.

Governor Robert Bentley has long ago forfeited any claim of moral leadership and to list his many failings would be as tedious as it is long.

However, calls for his impeachment may be premature.

How can those who defended former Speaker of the House Mike Hubbard chanting “innocent until proven guilty” in the face of his indictment on 23 felony counts of public corruption now feign such righteous anger at this scoundrel Bentley? Hubbard was convicted of 12 of those charges and today, many of those same individuals who blithely ignored Hubbard’s malfeasance want to hang the fool on Goat Hill.
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Move to impeach Bentley: Don’t be foolish

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

There is a movement afoot in the Alabama House of Representatives to impeach Governor Robert Bentley, a mission which, if accomplished, will doom the 2017 Regular Legislative Session.

Bentley is an embarrassment, a fool, a liar and a cheat, and may have even committed crimes that are punishable by law.

Gov. Bentley:

Is believed to have used State resources to facilitate an affair with a married staff member Rebekah Caldwell Mason.
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Small Lending Act leaves gaping loophole: Update

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

Like so many reforms in Alabama, the implementation of a statewide central database to track payday loans as ordered by Gov. Robert Bentley in 2013 fought its way through the courts to finally become operable in August 2015.

The establishment of the database is seen as a real step toward true reform in the lending industry. For the first time, loans would be tracked by a single statewide system that ensures that individuals are not taking out multiple loans from different lending companies simultaneously.

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There’s a new Sheriff in town

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

In the hidebound thinking of Montgomery’s political class, any appointment made by Gov. Robert Bentley is suspect, at best, most likely double-dealing. However, despite the initial unease with the appointment of Steve Marshall as Attorney General, there seems to be hope that he is the man for the job.

So, there’s a new Sheriff in town, and that could be a very good thing.
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