2/24: Bentley’s road plan is a plan to have a plan, The Polish Hammer will swing again and MadCo Commission Chairman debate…

Guest today:

  • 7:00 AM – State Senator Arthur Orr
  • 8:00 AM – South Huntsville Civic Association President Jeannee Gannuch on her organization’s endorsement in the Madison County Commission Chairman’s debate

Bentley has a plan… is it a good one?

The Governor outlined how the use of GARVEE bonds will finance the upgrades.  GARVEE is the term commonly used to describe the Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicles Bond Program.  GARVEE bonds are a method of financing highway and transit infrastructure in various locations.

“In this time when state dollars are limited, GARVEE bonds will allow us to pave today’s roads with tomorrow’s federal dollars,” Governor Bentley said.  “Through the use of these bonds, we can fund much-needed road projects now, rather than wait for federal funding years from now.”

“Borrowing makes good financial sense in this case because the cost of borrowing is as low as it’s ever been, and the cost of inflation on these construction projects is significantly higher than the interest rates we’ll pay on the bonds,” the Governor added.  “In addition, the construction jobs this program will create are critical to continuing our state’s economic growth.”

“We will also be able to use these future federal dollars to make improvements without raising taxes and without taking money from our state savings account,” Governor Bentley said.

The Governor will work with local leaders to identify and prioritize specific road and bridge projects.  The first project could get underway as soon as this spring.

“This will create jobs and draw industries to underdeveloped regions of the state,” the Governor said.  “There is no better time to invest in our roads and bridges than today.”

This isn’t really much of a plan. It is a plan to come up with a  plan.


The Polish hammer was praised repeatedly at the Madison County Commission Chairman’s debate.

Why?

Because he is awesome…

Superintendent Casey Wardynski, promising firings and demotions this weekend, said he was taking the first step to fix the business practices that outside auditors say cost the Huntsville school district more than $60 million during the past decade.

[...]

Sources inside the district say that up to eight department heads could be affected by the changes.

Wardynski, a retired colonel who took over as superintendent in July, had hired consultants to examine the business practices of a school system that had fallen nearly $20 million in debt. Last week auditors presented their findings to the school board, contending the system lost tens of millions in funding during the past decade, including a loss of between $22 million and $33 million in federal E-rate reimbursements between 1998 and 2011.

E-rate is the common name used for the Schools and Libraries Program of the Universal Service Fund, a federal program that provides discounts to local schools and libraries across the country for Internet access and cellphone service.

The consultants also found the district’s departments are ‘disconnected’ from one another, that departments lack detailed processes for day-to-day work, and that process controls are inadequate. The human resources staff is months behind in work, and there has been at least one instance of an employee buying items for the district from a business owned by his wife.

That incident has been brought to the attention of the Alabama Ethics Commission, Wardynski has said. Auditors also said the district paid twice what it should have for the construction of the new Lee High School.

What a mess.


Morons from outside our state have decided we should not be allowed to pray at City of Huntsville meetings

The Huntsville City Council defied an controversial group’s request to stop prayer before council meetings.

Dr. Richard Showers said the prayer in front of a group of more than 50 people Thursday night. The Freedom from Religion Foundation sent the council a letter last week ordering them to stop the supplication or face the consequences.

“We’ve received the letter, we’re taking it into consideration, we’re reviewing the cases they cite, and we’ll provide a response to the foundation in due time,” said Huntsville City Councilman Mark Russell.

Russell has served on the council for nearly a decade. He said he can’t remember anyone ever complaining about prayer until now.

“The city council has been opening with prayer since its existence,” said Russell.

Here we go again…

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Absurd interpretation of that section because the bottom line is a prayer does not establish a church religion. Period.


Feel good measure coming to Huntsville for door-to-door solicitors?

Salespeople who ignore “No Soliciting” signs posted outside a home or who fail to “immediately and peacefully leave” after being told no could have their permits yanked by the city.

Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, church groups, employees of charitable organizations, political candidates and children raising money for schools would be exempt.

An early draft of the rule would have forced commercial salespeople to provide the city with an up-to-date criminal background check. That was scrapped in favor of having them certify in writing that they have not been recently convicted of a felony or misdemeanor crime of “moral turpitude.”

The council could vote on the proposal at its March 8 meeting.

Yeah, this will do nothing.


Jackie Reed is running for Mayor…

Jackie Reed, who had previously indicated plans to run for Huntsville mayor in this summer’s municipal election, made it official Thursday afternoon. ‘We need to bust up the good old boy system and bring government back to the people,’ Reed said during a brief news conference on the lawn outside City Hall.

‘I think it’s time we had a breath of fresh air.’ An unofficial city government watchdog, Reed, 76, attends almost every City Council, Planning Commission and school board meeting – often going to the microphone to speak her mind.

Those efforts convinced the local NAACP chapter to give Reed its Rosa Parks Woman of Courage Award in 1988.

‘I know the issues’ from attending so many government meetings, Reed said, ‘and where the money is being wasted.’ Reed’s announcement creates a three-way race for the city’s top elected job. Mayor Tommy Battle and former Mayor Loretta Spencer also will be on the ballot in the Aug. 28 municipal election.

This will be Reed’s seventh mayoral race. Her best showing came in the 2000 election, when she finished behind Spencer and Herb Dixon but ahead of Jim Casey with 4.4 percent of the vote.She also has run unsuccessfully for City Council five times.


Great event by the Madison County Young Republicans!

Madison County Commission Chairman

Dale Strong (82.35%); Wayne Parker (17.65%)

U.S. Presidential Republican Primary:

Rick Santorum (46.27%); Mitt Romney (23.88%);

Newt Gingrich  (22.39%); Ron Paul (6.72%)

U.S. Congressional District 5:

Mo Brooks (88.81%); Parker Griffith  (11.19%)

7 Responses

  1. “Absurd interpretation of that section because the bottom line is a prayer does not establish a church. Period.”

    Absurd that you read the First Amendment as having the word “church” in it.

    • That’s it, I transposed church and religion… Fixed.

      • Would you mind if the city counsel meeting started with “Let us all acknowledge that there is no God, Jesus Christ is a myth, and the church is a cult.” ?

        • It’s free excercise of religion, if the members are atheists and they are excercising their religion then fine. And yes atheist is a religion.

          I expect they would have quite a hard time winning reelection, however.

          • The debate is really whether the city counsel members saying a prayer before the meeting are private citizens exercising their religion, or if they are acting as agents of the City Counsel, exercising the Counsel’s religion.

  2. Can’t believe Griffith got even 12%…

  3. [...] on GARVEE bonds… Governor outlined how the use of GARVEE bonds will finance the upgrades.  GARVEE is the [...]

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