WVAS Local

Montgomery, Alabama –
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - State government may use employee
furloughs to cope with budget cuts.
The State Personnel Board has scheduled a public hearing March
11 to discuss implementing a furlough plan. If approved, it would
allow a state employee to be furloughed up to two days per month
without pay. But the employee would keep health insurance and other
State Personnel Director Jackie Graham says furloughs could be
an option for department heads trying to avoid layoffs. She says

Montgomery, Alabama – MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - An Associated Press survey of Alabama
legislators finds strong support for removing the state sales tax
on groceries, but sharp division over how to do it.
The House Democratic Caucus has made removal of the grocery tax
a priority for the legislative session beginning Feb. 3.
An AP survey found that 63 percent of House members responding
and 70 percent of senators responding favored one of two plans to
eliminate the 4 percent grocery tax. The rest of the Legislature

Montgomery, Alabama – Here are some of the stories making headlines this hour in the WVAS newsroom. Send your news tips to Tana Shealey at tshealey@alasu.edu.

Sweetwater, Tennessee –
SWEETWATER, Tenn. (AP) - A Tennessee candy company is recalling
1,400 pounds of candy as a part of a national salmonella outbreak
involving peanut butter.
Blanton's Candies of Sweetwater announced Wednesday the recall
of Blanton's Peanut Butter Sticks that were distributed in
Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, Virginia, North Carolina and Florida.
The sticks are packaged in 8-ounce cellophane bags.
The company said they are recalling the candy because the peanut

Birmingham, Alabama –
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - A federal court jury in Birmingham has
convicted state Sen. E.B. McClain and Jefferson County minister
Samuel Pettagrue on all charges in a corruption case.
The jury returned the guilty verdict on all 48 counts late this
McClain is a six-term legislator, but he will forfeit his office
because of the conviction. The governor will have to schedule a
special election to fill it.
Prosecutors said Pettagrue accepted nearly $760,000 in state

Montgomery, Alabama – Listen,now, to some of the stories making headlines in the WVAS newsroom. Submit your news tips and story ideas to Tana Shealey via e-mail at tshealey@alasu.edu.

Birmingham, Alabama – BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - Testimony has concluded in the federal
corruption trial of state Sen. E.B. McClain of Birmingham and a
McClain's defense rested Tuesday without calling any witnesses.
Earlier, the wife of the lawmaker's co-defendant, the Rev. Samuel
Pettagrue, testified that her husband always wanted to help the
community with outreach programs.
Prosecutors say Pettagrue accepted about $760,000 in state grant
money obtained by McClain and then gave the lawmaker more than

Montgomery, Alabama – Inauguration brings joy to Ala. civil rights sites

Montgomery, Alabama – Two more candidates have announced plans to run for Mayor of Montgomery.

Mayoral Assistant, Michael Briddell, announced plans Monday to seek the job held by his former supervisor, Bobby Bright.

Montgomery Police officer Jay King announced his campaign for the position.

So far, Montgomery County Commission Chairman Todd Strange is the only candidate who has filed qualifying papers with the Montgomery Election Center. January 27th is the last day to qualify to run for mayor of Montgomery.

Montgomery, Alabama – MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - Alabama Department of Corrections
Commissioner Richard Allen has told legislators state prisons are
extremely overcrowded and understaffed.
Allen said Thursday if his budget is cut in the coming fiscal
year because of the recession, the situation will become more
Gov. Bob Riley has ordered most state agencies to cut their
budgets by 10 percent for the current fiscal year. But Riley said
he didn't impose that on corrections because of its problems.