Sam Prickett

BirminghamWatch



Sam Prickett is a reporter with BirminghamWatch, a nonprofit, independent news site. WBHM and BirminghamWatch collaborate through a content-sharing partnership.

Come Back With More Detail And We’ll Talk: Council Delays Plan For Rescue Money

Birmingham’s efforts to distribute millions of dollars of federal American Rescue Plan funding hit a snag Tuesday after councilors took issue with the vagueness of Mayor Randall Woodfin’s proposed allocations.

Offering A Carrot Won’t Get People Vaccinated, Maybe It’s Time To Talk About The Stick, Health Official Tells Birmingham Council

One health professional says incentivizing vaccines is not working and that it may be time for businesses to start requiring it.

Birmingham Recycling Kicked Up To Twice A Month, City Buys Refuse Equipment

Residents in the city of Birmingham will soon start having their recycling picked up twice a month. The city’s recycling program was temporarily halted by COVID-19 last April.

Birmingham Council Looking At Candidates To Fill Seats On Several Boards

Seats on several Birmingham boards and authorities will be up for grabs next month, including city council-appointed positions on the Birmingham-Jefferson County Transit Authority and the Birmingham Land Bank Authority.

Mayor Woodfin Seeks Community Help To Find Shooters Of Children

Five children have been killed or injured by gun violence in Birmingham this year, and city leaders are pleading for witnesses to come forward.

Environmental Groups Appeal Judge’s Cahaba River Ruling To The Supreme Court

Two local environmental groups are appealing a Jefferson County Circuit Court’s recent decision to throw out the lawsuit against the Birmingham Water Works Board.

Bang, Bang. You’re Closed: Birmingham Threatens To Close Clubs With Violent Episodes

A drive-by shooting at Club Euphoria in west Birmingham left 21-year-old Lykeria Taylor dead and another male injured. Earlier that night, gunfire broke out at the club, leaving three others with non-life-threatening injuries.

Birmingham Council OKs Law To Allow Museum To Return Native American Art

The Birmingham Museum of Art will soon return several works of art to two Native American tribes that have requested them back.

Birmingham Promise Gets $8 Million Boost From Private Companies

The Birmingham Promise Initiative has raked in $8 million in additional donations. The education scholarship offers graduates of Birmingham City Schools free college tuition, apprenticeships and paid internships.

Birmingham Seeks Dollars For Its Entertainment Venues

The city will seek federal funding for Boutwell Auditorium, Sloss Historic Landmark Furnace, the Southern Museum of Flight, Birmingham Botanical Gardens and Arlington Historic House.

Woodfin Won’t Resign In Controversy Over Police Shooting

The Birmingham chapter of Black Lives Matter has called for the resignation of Mayor Randall Woodfin and Police Chief Patrick D. Smith following the fatal police shooting of an armed Black man.

Birmingham City Council Approves Incentives For HBCU Classic At Legion Field

Legion Field is adding another HBCU football classic to its schedule.

Birmingham Agrees To Sell Old Ensley High To Be Redeveloped As 244-Unit Housing

The Birmingham City Council approved an ordinance Tuesday selling the former Ensley High School property, which has been abandoned since 2006, to Zimmerman Properties for $50,000.

Erasing The Stain: 15,000 Pardoned Of Marijuana Possession Convictions

Mayor Randall Woodfin plans to pardon more than 15,000 Birmingham residents convicted of marijuana possession.

Birmingham Sets Up Civilian Board to Review Police Misconduct

The five-member board will have the authority to investigate citizen complaints and will have some subpoena powers to aid those investigations.

Redevelopment Of Southtown As Mixed-Use Property To Begin In June

The redevelopment plans have been several years in the making.

Birmingham Getting $5 Million To Battle Homelessness

The funding will come through HUD’s Home Investment Partnerships Program and is intended to help cities create affordable and supportive housing and services for people experiencing or at risk of homelessness.

Bill Would Cut Pensions For Future Birmingham Employees, Raise Employee Contributions

A bill proposed this session would require the city of Birmingham to fully fund its pension obligation and increase employee contributions to the pension fund by half a percent. But opponents of the bill say, if passed, it would disproportionately affect lower-earning city employees.

Derelict Banks High School Building Set To Be Demolished

The Birmingham City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to approve the one-year extension of a loan agreement with the Alabama Department of Environmental Management to tear down the building.

Environmental Groups Say Water Board Isn’t Effectively Protecting Drinking Water Supply

A new lawsuit against the Birmingham Water Works Board claims it failed to comply with a 2001 consent decree that protects land around the Cahaba River watershed, a major source of Birmingham’s drinking water.

Birmingham Divvies Up $500K In Bold Funding For Nonprofits

Nine Birmingham nonprofits will receive funding from the city’s Building Opportunities for Lasting Development grant initiative this year, despite an overall reduction in funding for the program.

Field Of Candidates For Birmingham Mayor Continues To Grow

Currently, there are six people in the race for mayor of Birmingham. The filing deadline is July 10.

Birmingham Mayor, Council Pushing Two Separate Wish Lists In Legislature

The city of Birmingham is sending two sets of lobbyists to Montgomery — one from Mayor Randall Woodfin’s office and one from the City Council.

Federal COVID-19 Rent and Utilities Assistance Set For Birmingham Residents

The City of Birmingham has received nearly $6.3 million in federal funding to assist residents who are unable to pay rent and utilities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Candidates Lining Up To Run For Birmingham City Council

Several incumbents plan to seek re-election and some challengers have emerged.

Birmingham City Council Approves The Council President’s Trip To Meet With Legislators

The Birmingham City Council has approved its first official travel since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic last year.

William Bell Will Run For Mayor’s Seat Again

Former Birmingham Mayor William Bell has filed paperwork to run again for mayor.

Woodfin Kicks Off Mayoral Reelection Campaign, Says He’ll Ramp Up Work On Neighborhoods, Education Priorities

Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin announced this weekend that he is running for another term.

City Council Approves Bid For Birmingham Real-Time Crime Center

The city of Birmingham's 'real-time crime center' is coming to life thanks to the city council's approval of a nearly $1 million construction bid.

Birmingham Council Hires Its Own Lobbyist And Lawyer, Saying The Mayor Doesn’t Share Information

The Birmingham City Council decided this week to hire its own lobbyist and legal consultant.

Woodfin Looks Toward A Better 2021 In State Of The Community Address

The mayor discussed continued neighborhood revitalization, the rise in homicides, and encouraging economic development projects on the horizon.

Birmingham Council Goes Virtual, Mayor Still Hospitalized

Jefferson County's recent spike in COVID-19 cases — along with Mayor Randall Woodfin’s recent COVID diagnosis and hospitalization — finally pushed the city council's weekly meeting fully online.