State officials are working with a Birmingham law firm to try and determine the median household income in Alabama. The number could control the salaries of state lawmakers in the coming year because of a constitutional amendment approved by state voters in 2012.
The United States locks up people at a higher rate than anywhere else in the world. Some of the most overcrowded prisons are right here in Alabama. Julia Tutwiler Prison for Women is one of them. But some inmates there have access to a unique state-funded program that offers academics and "life skills" they'll need after release. The problem is, this J.F. Ingram State Technical College program, which could ease overcrowding, is struggling for funds. WBHM's Dan Carsen has the story and a full-length interview with J.F. Ingram's president.
Travelers at the Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport are now enjoying a sparkling new concourse, part of the facility's $200 million renovation. The new restaurants and amenities have been getting rave reviews, but the larger question is if this project can reverse some downward trends for the airport. We talk about it in this week's Magic City Marketplace.
US Attorney General Eric Holder went to Ferguson, Missouri this week. He's there to meet with law enforcement officials to discuss the protests and unrest following the death of Michael Brown. He's the unarmed black man who was killed by a white police officer on August 9th. The racial tensions and violence in Ferguson are bringing back memories of the 1960's here in Birmingham. Ahmad Ward is the head educator at the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute. He sees some parallels between the chaos in Ferguson today and Birmingham in the 1960's and shares his thoughts with WBHM.
It's good to be king, but as John Archibald says, it's super to be superintendent. The salaries earned by superintendent vs. teachers in Alabama is significant to say the least. We take a look at those numbers and what it means for Alabama educators. Plus, is it fair to compare present day Ferguson, Missouri to Birmingham, Alabama in the 1960's?
She's the granddaughter of country music legend Hank Williams. Her dad, Hank junior, has sold millions of records. But Holly Williams isn't living in anyone's shadow. She's got her own sound and is making a name for herself. Greg Bass has this profile...
College football season is nearly upon us. It comes at the same time a sports-related political football is reemerging in Birmingham. Local leaders have argued for years about building a domed stadium or multi-purpose facility. Momentum for such a facility has been on the rise in recent months. This week a prominent voice in the hospitality industry declared there will be a domed stadium with or without public support. We talk about those comments with Al.com and Birmingham News political commentator Kyle Whitmire.
You know how people often say the book is better than the movie because you can create your own pictures? The same thing is true for audio. A new show with its American debut Tuesday at UAB's Alys Stephens Center puts that notion to the test. "To Sleep to Dream" is a production of the United Kingdom-based EarFilms. It's like a feature-length movie told only with sound.
Birmingham city leaders are in a battle with Nashville, Austin, Atlanta, and other cities over attracting young professionals. A revived downtown, food trucks, and breweries are considered a part of that. But the real key seems to be jobs. We talk about that in this week's Magic City Marketplace.
Alabama's J.F. Ingram State may be the nation's only state-run two-year college exclusively for inmates. Its mission is to reduce recidivism by offering "three legs of the stool": academics, life skills, and vocational training. WBHM's Dan Carsen recently visited Ingram's Deatsville campus, where he met Timothy Brown, a 53-year-old convicted robber and burglar serving a life sentence but hoping for parole. Brown had walked over from the Frank Lee minimum-security facility next door. He'd been passing around organic cantaloupe and filling in for his horticulture teacher. Dan starts the interview by asking Brown if doing the latter makes him nervous.
Birmingham city officials are gung ho about wooing the Democratic National Convention to the Magic City in 2016, but the price tag for that effort is quickly increasing. Two weeks ago the Birmingham City Council approved $250,000 to hire consultants to promote the city's bid. This week they approved another $275,000 for more consultants. But what's really raising eyebrows is the fact this involved a closed-door meeting and no bid contracts. Alabama Media Group columnist John Archibald offers his thoughts.
Birmingham City officials had a closed door meetings this week regarding the Democratic National Convention and the possibility of the Magic City playing host. Will Birmingham host the DNC and at what cost? Kyle Whitmire from AL.com and the Birmingham News joins us to discuss.