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Alabama lawmakers still considering Birmingham-Southern loan

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Alabama lawmakers still considering Birmingham-Southern loan


A bill intended to provide Birmingham-Southern College a $30 million state loan is up for discussion Tuesday in an Alabama House committee.

SB31, by Sen. Jabo Waggoner, R-Vestavia Hills, would move control of the Distressed Institutions of Higher Education loan program from State Treasurer Young Boozer to Alabama Commission on Higher Education Executive Director Jim Purcell.

Boozer denied Birmingham-Southern’s loan application last year, finding that the college did not meet the requirements set under the loan program, including adequate collateral and an adequate financial restructuring plan. The college disputed Boozer’s decision.

Waggoner’s bill would make other changes to the program that appear to make it more likely Birmingham-Southern will receive the money.

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The Legislature created the loan program last year in response to Birmingham-Southern’s request for state assistance. The private, liberal arts college has said it is likely to close without the state funds. The state loan would be a bridge while it works to raise $150 million to $200 million for a private endowment that would sustain operations, college officials say.

Birmingham-Southern said it has received pledges of $46 million toward the fundraising effort. The college has an enrollment of 689 students this semester.

Two weeks ago, the Senate passed Waggoner’s bill by a vote of 23-5. The House education budget committee will hold the public hearing Tuesday.



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Alabama

State Rep. Marcus Paramore weighs in on Alabama Voter Turnout – The Troy Messenger

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State Rep. Marcus Paramore weighs in on Alabama Voter Turnout – The Troy Messenger


State Rep. Marcus Paramore weighs in on Alabama Voter Turnout

Published 9:38 am Monday, April 22, 2024

By Nathan Braisted

Voter turnout in Alabama continues to decline each year. There are over 3 million registered voters in the state, according to the Secretary of State’s website, but in the decisive 2020 presidential election, only 62.8% actually casted ballots.

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Rep. Marcus Paramore, R-Pike County, is working to find a solution.

“You got to vote,” said Paramore. “The only way to make things happen and change things is to vote.”

To help improve turnout, last year Paramore sponsored bill HB327 to designate another location in Pike County as a voting center. The bill passed the legislature in May of 2023 and recognizes Hephzibah Baptist on Henderson Highway as an official polling location.

“It’ll help that particular precinct and hopefully produce higher voting turnouts because it’ll be easier to get to,” said Paramore.

Voting statistics for Pike County in 2020 were below the state average, with 58.9% of registered voters showing up to the polls. The 2020 election saw the highest voter turnout of the 21st century according to census.gov, but even then, it was only 66.8% of total eligible voters.

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Midterm elections saw even worse numbers in 2022, with only 38.6% of Alabamians casting ballots, and Pike County below the state average once again with an even 35%.

“I think people are apathetic to the system,” said Paramore.

“A lot of people think that politics do not matter because their voice isn’t heard, but if you don’t vote, you’re definitely not going to be heard.”

Despite more opportunity being available, the most recent major election, the 2024 presidential primaries, only 17% casted ballots on Super Tuesday.

The downturn in voter turnout is seen in several other rural states across the country, but Paramore said something need to be done to combat the issue.

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“A lot of people don’t understand the entire process,” said Paramore. “Not just the voting itself, but how the whole system operates.”

Paramore recommends a stronger civics curriculum in Alabama schools.

“If you’re in K-12 in Alabama, you need to understand how the primaries work in Alabama and how the general elections work in Alabama,” said Paramore.

“The most precious right of any American citizen is the right to vote.”

 

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Alabama City Councilman Hit With New Auto Insurance Fraud Indictment

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Alabama City Councilman Hit With New Auto Insurance Fraud Indictment


Authorities have added four more insurance fraud charges to those already lodged against an city official in coastal Alabama.

Prichard City Councilman Derrick Griffin last week was indicted by a grand jury for the second time in four months. In December, he was charged with making fraudulent representations on the purchase of a BMW automobile.

On Thursday, the grand jury said he also misrepresented to insurance companies his ownership of an Acura, a Ford van, another BMW and a Nissan Frontier, according to local news reports.

The charges, if they result in a conviction, carry a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, authorities said.

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Alabama Lands Award-Winning Kicker

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Alabama Lands Award-Winning Kicker


Special teams, special plays, special players. It was the one phase of football that seemed to plague Nick Saban and Alabama during his dynasty with the Crimson Tide. Alabama’s one fault was their kicking game, and it arguably cost them a national championship run in 2013 with the infamous “Kick-Six.”

Then, Crimson Tide fans worried no more when Will Reichard took over as the Tide’s kicker his freshman season in 2019. When Alabama won the national championship in 2020, Reichard did not miss a single kick that season, causing Alabama fans around the world to rejoice that Alabama may have finally solved their kicking concerns.

Now, in 2024, Reichard is off the the NFL to showcase his talents to the league, and Alabama fans felt those kicking concerns creep back into their minds. Reichard became the NCAA All-time points leader in 2024 before departing for the league, and Alabama fans had concerns about the next man up on the roster. Those concerns were compounded when Alabama head coach Kalen DeBoer said the Tide was hosting an “open competition” at kicker during spring practice.

Alabama’s annual A-Day scrimmage did nothing to stall the fears of fans. Conor Talty, the person who was supposed to replace Reichard, missed a 45-yard field goal during the scrimmage. The other kickers on Alabama’s roster did not attempt a kick over 30 yards.

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Alabama was linked to a kicker in the portal, and they now have their man. The Crimson Tide has landed a commitment from Graham Nicholson from Miami of Ohio, per his X (Formerly Twitter) account.

Nicholson, a junior, made 27/28 kicks during the 2023 campaign, with his longest field goal being 52 yards. He went 35/37 on extra points for the Redhawks.

If that name sounds familiar to Crimson Tide fans, it should, Nicholson won. the Lou Groza Award, handed out to the best kicker in college football annually, in 2023. Reichard was also a finalist for the award.

Alabama’s 2024 A-Day

Gallery Credit: Wyatt Fulton

Alabama Football Spring Practice 4-9-2024

Alabama’s Final Four Loss to UConn

Gallery Credit: Wyatt Fulton

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Alabama Football’s Ninth Spring Practice of 2024

Gallery Credit: Wyatt Fulton

Alabama Football 2024 Pro Day

Gallery Credit: Wyatt Fulton

Sport Your Favorite Sports Station with Exclusive Tide 100.9 Gear

Gallery Credit: Threadless, TSM





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