Sources: Corruption Grand Jury focused on power plant deals

January 25, 2018

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

A special grand jury in Montgomery is targeting a variety of potential corrupt deals related to the Bellefonte nuclear plant near Scottsboro, several sources have told the Alabama Political Reporter.

The investigation into that possible corruption, led by Deputy Attorney General Matt Hart, is drawing in some of the state’s top political and business figures, as the grand jury explores a number of alleged offenses.

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What’s next for Gov. Bentley?

March 22, 2017

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

Austrian-British philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein wrote, “A man will be imprisoned in a room with a door that’s unlocked and opens inwards; as long as it does not occur to him to pull rather than push.”

It seems evident that Gov. Robert Bentley sits in a similar room without imagining the obvious way out.

If our sources are correct, on April 5, the State’s Ethics Commission will hear evidence of possible wrongdoing on his part. How Director Tom Albritton presents the facts of the investigation will be critical to what happens next. Albritton finds himself in the unenviable position of introducing the fruit of an almost year-long investigation. How he presents those facts, what he says and doesn’t say will perhaps mean more than the ethics probe itself.
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Republican Caucus to determine fate of Majority Leader today

February 14, 2017

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

Later today the House Republican Caucus will hold a vote of confidence on Majority Leader Mickey Hamon (R-Decatur).

The vote is believed to be related to an investigation into a business interest of Hammon’s and Rep. Jack Williams (R-Birmingham) according to those with knowledge of the inquiry. Special Agents from the Office of Postmaster General have reportedly interviewed several House members on a bill that was put forward with the potential to affect a business interest shared by the two lawmakers positively.

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Shattuck hired for contract work with Gov. Bentley

January 17, 2017

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

Former General Counsel for The University of Alabama System, Cooper Shattuck, resigned his position on December 31, 2016. He stated, “After many years of public service to the State and to the State’s largest education enterprise, I am looking forward to returning to the private practice of law, where I can utilize my broad-based experience to further the interests and accomplish the goals of numerous clients.”
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Attorney General’s comments sow confusion over reported Bentley investigation

December 30, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

An exchange of letters between Attorney General Luther Strange and House Judiciary Committee Chairman, Rep. Mike Jones, along with a subsequent press release announcing the suspension of hearings into the Articles of Impeachment against Governor Robert Bentley, seemed straight forward back in November.

It is a fact that Jones’ committee was investigating Bentley, and the November letter from Strange seemed to confirm the Attorney General’s office was doing the same and Strange was concerned about the dual probes interfering with each other.

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Breaking: Bogus Report Leaked By Bentley Cohort To Smear Nemesis

October 1, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERYAlabama Political Reporter confirmed late Friday night that an operative inside Gov. Robert Bentley’s administration leaked a false report to Associated Press (AP) reporter Kim Chandler, smearing former law enforcement chief, Spencer Collier.

Chandler has yet to publish the findings in the trumped-up document, but she has received all the material, according to insiders.

The suspicious report stems from an investigation ordered by the Governor within hours of Collier’s firing.
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Sanderford Cancels Sunset Meeting

July 26, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—An email to members of the House Sunset Committee acquired by the Alabama Political Reporter states, the meeting scheduled for July 28, was canceled “due to lack of attendance.”

But, that’s just the cover story.

A controversy erupted last week after Republican Committee Chair Howard Sanderford (R-Huntsville) rescheduled a meeting of the committee, which conflicted with the Republican Convention in Cleveland.

Sanderford moved the meeting to July 28, which conflicts with the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia. His action spurred Representative Laura Hall (D-Huntsville), a Democrat on the committee, to call foul, sending an email disclosing she had sent him an earlier message hoping the Committee’s meeting would not conflict with either convention. Hall’s correspondence indicates Sanderford sent a letter to her concerning rescheduling the meeting, which she found offensive: “I have received your letter and the response indicating what may be interpreted in a manner that quite frankly we don’t need in Alabama at this present time,” wrote Hall. She also added, “It is Senator Figures and my hope that you would want to create an environment of cooperation during these turbulent times in Alabama.”
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Gov. Bentley Among Those Testifying at Montgomery Special Grand Jury

July 14, 2016

 By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—At 8:39 am, Wednesday, Gov. Robert Bentley walked into the Special Grand Jury being held in Montgomery County as Alabama Political Reporter reported yesterday.

Bentley’s entourage included legal counsel David Byrne and one of his personal attorneys, Bill Espy.

hart-espy-story

davidbyrne

Following the governor was Hal Taylor, chief of staff to former ALEA Secretary Spencer Collier.

After lunch Collier’s replacement Stan Stabler, current ALEA head, entered the special grand jury room.
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Hubbard Defense Files For Continuance Again

April 27, 2016

By Susan Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—Last Friday, Bill Baxley, lead defense attorney for Mike Hubbard, filed another motion for continuance, this time to move the trial date to August. The motion states, that they were not prepared for the June 16 date set by Judge Jacob Walker, III, on March 29. The Defense’s motion asked Judge Walker for the trial date be moved to August 1, in order for them to be fully prepared for trial.
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Hubbard Finds Another Reason to Dismiss His Criminal Charges

January 22, 2016

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—House Speaker Mike Hubbard has filed a motion to dismiss the criminal case against him, claiming the Lee County Special Grand Jury expired before he was indicted. Court observers, and even defense attorneys speaking on background called the move desperate, amateurish, and bizarre.

Hubbard’s new lead counsel Lance Bell is basing this latest attempt for a dismissal on the State’s request to empanel the Special Grand Jury (SGJ) in July, 2013. He claims the State’s estimation of the time needed for the SGJ is evidence the jury should have been dismissed July 2014, before Hubbard was arrested on 23 felony counts of public corruption. Bell’s thin argument revolves around the State’s request which says the SGJ will “meet periodically over the next twelve months.”
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