Gov. Robert Bentley calls for job creation initiatives, teacher pay raise in State of the State

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Tying job creation proposals to efforts to end Alabama’s high poverty level, Gov. Robert Bentley Tuesday called for new job training and creation initiatives, an expansion of education programs and a two percent pay raise for the state’s teachers. The governor mixed calls to create opportunity with attacks on federal government programs, particularly the Affordable [...]

Alabama senators settle Iron Bowl wager with hat presentation

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The 2014 legislative session began Tuesday with the settling of a wager, and some echoes of the Iron Bowl. Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh, R-Anniston, an Auburn fan, and Sen. Roger Bedford, D-Russellville, who roots for Alabama, placed a friendly bet before the Nov. 30 clash between the historic rivals. If Alabama won, Marsh [...]

Alabama Legislature convenes; budgets likely to dominate 2014 session

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The gavels came down in the Alabama House and Senate a few minutes after noon Tuesday afternoon, signaling the start of the 2014 Regular Session. This year’s session, coming a few months before the general elections, is expected to be dominated by the state’s budgets. The Education Trust Fund budget, which pays for most schools [...]

State education department seeks $245 million boost for K-12 schools

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The Alabama State Department of Education is seeking a $245.1 million increase, with a focus on hiring hundreds of teachers for middle schools, expanding online learning and providing more funding for transportation in the state. In a presentation before lawmakers Tuesday morning, State Superintendent Tommy Bice said the $4.16 billion budget request for K-12 schools [...]