Entries from February 2011 ↓

Baldwin departments talk reorganization, relocation

In a work session that lasted more than six hours Tuesday, commissioners heard department heads outline reorganization plans and suggest relocating dozens of workers

“I don’t understand why we’re doing every department here,” said Commissioner Tucker Dorsey at one point in the talks. “I’m ready for personnel (issues) to be behind us.”

The only move commissioners agreed on was a plan to consolidate offices for accountants working in Clerk/Treasurer Kim Creech’s department. Under the plan, all of the employees will move into the Annex I building in Bay Minette. The workers are currently stationed at various locations in the county seat.

Baldwin departments talk reorganization, relocation

Gulf Coast residents pushing for coastal insurance reform

When the state Legislature starts its session Tuesday, a group of south Alabama residents hope that a new governor and Republican majority will mean renewed interest in addressing soaring coastal property insurance rates.

At meetings around Mobile and Baldwin counties, members of the Homeowners Hurricane Insurance Initiative have been discussing grassroots efforts to support Senate Bill 2. The proposal, also known as the Property Insurance Clarity Bill, is sponsored by Sen. Ben Brooks, R-Mobile.

Gulf Coast residents pushing for coastal insurance reform

Orange Beach Wharf conference center being studied as possible city civic center

The Wharf Conference Center could become a public civic center under a proposal being studied by the City Council.

At a special meeting Tuesday night, the council voted unanimously to conduct a study on buying the 25,500-square-foot center and converting the site into a civic center. The building’s owner, Solution Capital Investment of Birmingham, is asking $1.6 million for the facility on Canal Road, according to the resolution

Orange Beach Wharf conference center being studied as possible city civic center

Baldwin County 2nd-fastest-growing county in Alabama

The population of Baldwin County shot up nearly 30 percent in the past decade to about 182,260, according to U.S. Census Bureau data released this afternoon.

That was the second-highest growth rate of any county in the state. Among the state’s 67 counties, only Shelby County south of Birmingham grew at a faster pace — 36 percent, according to the 2010 census.

Census 2010: Baldwin County 2nd-fastest-growing county in Alabama

Man enters plea in bicycle fatality

A Mobile man will spend five years in prison for a hit-and-run accident that left a bicyclist dead 6½ years ago.

Terry D. Rodgers, 35, charged with manslaughter, entered a blind plea to vehicular homicide, according to the Baldwin County District Attorney’s Office and his attorney. Baldwin Circuit Judge J. Langford Floyd handed down the sentence on Thursday along with a concurrent five-year term for leaving the scene of the accident, according to defense attorney J. Clark Stankoski and the District Attorney’s Office.

The accident occurred near the intersection of Ala. 59 and Baldwin County 4 east in Gulf Shores in August 2004.

Man enters plea in bicycle fatality

Daphne council overrides mayor’s veto of bonding ordinance

The City Council on Monday overturned the mayor’s veto of a council decision two weeks ago to change the municipality’s bonding requirements for certain elected officials and staff members.

Of the council’s seven members, five voted in favor of overriding the veto, one voted against the measure, and one — Council President Cathy Barnette — abstained from voting.

Daphne council overrides mayor’s veto of bonding ordinance

Councilman Worried Old Gas Lines May Explode

Councilman Stankoski said he is worried about the corroded iron natural gas piping installed in older neighborhoods — and asked the Mayor to give a progress report on its replacement at a future meeting. He said it ought to be a higher priority–given the city’s improving financial picture and numerous such explosions occurring throughout the country

Councilman Worried Old Gas Lines May Explode

Daphne mayor vetoes bonding changes

Council President Cathy Barnette said she is being politically attacked because she is personally vulnerable — her husband had two recent heart surgeries, her family’s income dropped and her credit score plummeted.

As a result, the city’s bank wouldn’t bond her, as required by city law. The council voted Feb. 7 to drop the requirement that the council’s president and president pro tempore carry $500,000 bonds to protect the municipality against theft or loss.

Last week, Mayor Fred Small vetoed the ordinance. He said Monday that he had tried to avoid airing out Barnette’s personal business, but he’d been forced to do so.

Daphne mayor vetoes bonding changes

Police: Daphne man was strangled to death by new roommate

A man whose body was discovered Sunday in his apartment had been strangled with a pair of electrical cords by a man who had been his roommate for just a week, police said today.

Steven McCullough’s wife had been living in San Antonio for the past 6 weeks, caring for a sick relative, police spokesman Lt. Jud Beedy said Tuesday.

Carmadelle, 31, signed a confession late Monday, and law-enforcement officers charged him with capital murder, Beedy said.

 

Police: Daphne man was strangled to death by new roommate

Daphne Man Charged In Murder Of Roommate

Baldwin County wilderness program for wayward girls turning a profit

During its first couple of years, it appeared that the Baldwin County-run Girls Wilderness Program might not make it out of the woods financially. But now, the alternative sentencing program seems to be gaining solid footing, according to officials

The program aimed at helping teenage girls who end up before a judge for uncontrollable or illegal behavior began in March 2007. But by the end of its first year, the program was more than $800,000 in debt and saw a loss of $1.7 million the following year

Management changes and a system of Medicaid billing for the rehabilitation services provided helped the program turn a profit, making nearly $100,000 last year

Baldwin County wilderness program for wayward girls turning a profit

Paycheck Controversy at Baldwin Co. District Attorney Office

Baldwin County District Attorney Hallie Dixon is defending her decision to cut some salaries and lay off three employees.

Alabama law allows Dixon to make changes to the amount of money her workers make, but some employees say they were not properly warned how drastic the changes would be.

One employee says her yearly salary was cut by $18,000 which is about $600 dollars a paycheck. She also told LOCAL 15 News she did not learn about the cut until payday.

Paycheck Controversy at Baldwin Co. District Attorney Office

Four employees received raises rather than cuts. Their increases ranged from $1,275 to $5,500 annually, according to state records.

Baldwin County DA employees learned of salary cuts when receiving paychecks

Students Cautious About What They Say After Fellow Student Lands in Jail

A Daphne High School student is in jail after school officials say he made terrorist threats. Aaron Sims was arrested during school on Friday.

“You don’t shout ‘bomb’ in an airport, and there’s certain things you don’t say in schools,” Baldwin County Schools spokesperson Terry Wilhite said. “He made some comments that the teacher felt to be threatening.”

Officials won’t say exactly what Aaron Sims mumbled, but they do say it happened after Sims was called to the office for not being in compliance with the school’s uniform policy.

Students Cautious About What They Say After Fellow Student Lands in Jail

Daphne High student charged with making terrorist threat over uniform policy

Daphne High School Student Arrested

Fairhope Parents Plead to Save the ‘K Center’

Anger, desperation and even a few tears from parents trying to make their case Monday night for keeping the Fairhope K Center open.

The school formerly known as the “K-1 Center” teaches only kindergarten in Fairhope but has been an institution in the downtown for decades.

Superintendent of Baldwin County Schools Dr. Alan Lee says shutting down the center would save the County roughly $270,000.

Fairhope Parents Plead to Save the ‘K Center’

Baldwin County School Superintendent Dr. Alan Lee said closing the Fairhope Kindergarten Center and moving students to Fairhope Elementary would save the school system at least $720,000 dollars year.

Should Fairhope Kindergarten Center Close?

Daphne High Student arrested for making terrorist threat

Daphne High School Principal sent this message to parents today:

… student was arrested Friday for “making a terrorist threat”. The student made extemporaneous comments after being referred to the office on a discipline matter. The school was never in any danger nor did we go into lockdown. Our administration asked our School Resource Officer (SRO) to assist and the SRO took the student to the police station. I stress to students all the time that every comment is taken seriously by the school, the district and law enforcement

FBI Involved in Daphne Homicide Investigation

Daphne Police are investigating the death of a man found in his apartment Sunday as a homicide.

Steven Mccullough, 43, was found dead in his apartment at Grande Point Apartments in Lake Forest after someone called police to check on him.

UPDATE: FBI Involved in Daphne Homicide Investigation