New Year’s Resolutions for Alabama’s Political Leaders

2014 was a busy year for Alabama -- Speaker of the House Mike Hubbard was indicted on felony corruption charges, Republicans swept all the major elections in the state and Jefferson County had, arguably, its first slow news year in a decade. What's in store for 2015? Kyle Whitmire of and the Birmingham News suggests some New Year's resolutions for Alabama's leaders.

Why Does Alabama Replace License Plates Every Five Years?

If you're like most Alabama residents, you received a new license plate in the mail this year. There was actually nothing wrong with your old one. Still, every five years, the state sends replacement plates for the majority of registered vehicles in the state. But have you ever stopped to think why? It costs the state millions of dollars and some are asking questions. WBHM's Sarah Delia has this report.

Kyle Whitmire: Gerrymandering In Alabama

On Wednesday the US Supreme Court took up the complicated question of what kind of gerrymandering is acceptable and what kind is not. The court is being asked to decide whether a 2010 state legislative redistricting in Alabama overloaded some districts with black Democrats on the basis of race or party.

Parker Griffith: Alabama’s Democratic Gubernatorial Candidate

Parker Griffith is a former congressman and state law maker as well as a retired physician. He's also the Democratic gubernatorial candidate facing incumbent Governor Robert Bentley on November 4th. WBHM's Sarah Delia spoke with Griffith about his campaign.

Representative Spencer Bachus Reflects On His Time In Congress

A fixture on the Alabama political scene will soon be no longer. Spencer Bachus has served in Congress since 1993. But this year the Vestavia Hills Republican is retiring. He's one of 24 incumbents to step down this term.Congressman Bachus spoke to WBHM's Sarah Delia about his time in Washington. He started off by explaining why he decided to retire.

Kyle Whitmire: Politics is local, School and City Politics have a busy week

After renewing his employment contract, the Superintendent of the Birmingham City Schools resigns. Meanwhile, Birmingham City Council has voted to give themselves a lift in their expense accounts, future council members a raise in salary, and give the mayor more freedom to spend. We ponder these local political acts and what's next with Kyle Whitmire, political commentator for the Alabama Media Group.

Birmingham Fashion Truck: Making The Magic City Rethink Fashion

Food trucks have become ubiquitous in many cities. Entrepreneurs have taken the same concept of retail on wheels and applied them to apparel. That trend has now come to Birmingham. WBHM's intern Morgan Smith has more.

Kyle Whitmire: Judge Lifts Restrictions On The Montgomery Advertiser

Last week Jefferson County Circuit Judge Robert Vance lifted his ban that temporarily blocked the Montgomery Advertiser from publishing information from Alagasco documents. We take a look at why the ban was set in the first place as well as job numbers in the state.

Kyle Whitmire: Domestic And Child Abuse In The South

Ray Rice, Mark Fuller, and Adrian Peterson. All of these men have been in the headlines in recent weeks for issues involving domestic or child abuse. As these acts of violence keep resurfacing in the news cycle we're left wondering: what needs to change in our culture to make the abuse stop? Kyle Whitmire of and the Birmingham News joins us now to discuss.

The Uncertain Future Of The AEA

Paul Hubbert is the retired leader of the Alabama Education Association. This week he wrote a letter to the AEA board of directors saying the organization is in trouble. He says there are management, financial, and organizational problems. Kyle Whitmire of and the Birmingham News joins us to discuss the future of the AEA.

The Story of Sloss Quarters

A part of Birmingham's past is coming alive again. From the 1880's to the mid 1900's, Sloss Furnaces was an economic driver for the Magic City. It put Birmingham on the map as the place in the south for iron production. But those furnaces and boilers left over today don't tell the stories of the people who worked and lived there. That's about to change.

Kyle Whitmire: Determining Lawmaker’s Salaries in 2015

State officials are working with a Birmingham law firm to try and determine the median household income in Alabama. The number could control the salaries of state lawmakers in the coming year because of a constitutional amendment approved by state voters in 2012.

John Archibald: Salary Disparities Between Teachers and Superintendents

It's good to be king, but as John Archibald says, it's super to be superintendent. The salaries earned by superintendent vs. teachers in Alabama is significant to say the least. We take a look at those numbers and what it means for Alabama educators. Plus, is it fair to compare present day Ferguson, Missouri to Birmingham, Alabama in the 1960's?

Ahmad Ward: Birmingham’s Reaction to Violence in Ferguson

US Attorney General Eric Holder went to Ferguson, Missouri this week. He's there to meet with law enforcement officials to discuss the protests and unrest following the death of Michael Brown. He's the unarmed black man who was killed by a white police officer on August 9th. The racial tensions and violence in Ferguson are bringing back memories of the 1960's here in Birmingham. Ahmad Ward, is the head educator at the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute. He sees some parallels between the chaos in Ferguson today and Birmingham in the 1960's and shares his thoughts with WBHM.

Kyle Whitire: At What Cost Will Birmingham Host The DNC?

Birmingham City officials had a closed door meetings this week regarding the Democratic National Convention and the possibility of the Magic City playing host. Will Birmingham host the DNC and at what cost? Kyle Whitmire from and the Birmingham News joins us to discuss.

Kyle Whitmire: Reaction To Representative Mo Brooks’s Remarks

This week Republican Representative Mo Brooks of Huntsville found himself in hot water after he made some controversial remarks about the Democratic Party. Brooks claimed that the Democratic Party is "wagging a war on whites" and politicians from both parties are taking issue with his comments.

Kyle Whitmire: Uber Stalls In Birmingham

This week the Birmingham City Council voted unanimously to modify the city's transportation code. The modifications would have a direct impact on taxis and ride-sharing services like Uber. While the changes would allow Uber to operate in city limits, Uber reps tell that Birmingham's rules still make it impractical for them do business in the city.

Becky Anthony: Life With An Incarcerated Son

When a loved one is incarcerated, it can have a profound impact on their family members on the outside. These families are lifelines to the inmate. From sending money to traveling long distances to visit the inmates, it's work to provide that kind of financial and emotional care. We explore those challenges as part of WBHM's continued coverage of Alabama's prison system. WBHM's Sarah Delia has the story of one mother who has made countless sacrifices to keep her family afloat in order to support her incarcerated son.

Kyle Whitmire: Will Birmingham Host The Next DNC?

This week the Democratic National Committee visited Birmingham to see how the Magic City would perform if selected to host the 2016 national convention. We take a look at how the visit went and what the city's chances are of hosting the convention.

Kyle Whitmire: Alabama Runoff Elections

Alabamians voted in state legislative, congressional, and local primary runoffs Tuesday. We take a look at voter turnout rate, issues at the polls, and the winners and losers with Kyle Whitmire, political commentator for and the Birmingham News.

Kyle Whitmire: Should Alabama Legalize Marijuana?

It's illegal to buy or sell marijuana in the state of Alabama, but some Alabamians and even lawmakers may be coming around to the idea of one day legalizing the use of the drug. We take a look at the polarizing debate over the legalization of marijuana with Kyle Whitmire, political commentator for and the Birmingham News.

How Prison Shaped a Woman’s Career Path

For 10 years of her adult life, Jamie Faust was in and out of county jail and federal prison. In 2012 she entered Julia Tutwiler's Prison for Women as an HIV positive inmate. At the time, HIV inmates were segregated from the general population. She tells WBHM's Sarah Delia that living with HIV in prison wasn't easy, but the experience pushed her to follow a career path she might not have otherwise.

Kyle Whitmire: 6th Congressional District Campaign Tactics

Kyle Whitmire, of and the Birmingham News joins us to discuss the campaign tactics of the two Republican candidates battling to represent Alabama's 6th Congressional District. Paul DeMarco and Gary Palmer will face each other in a runoff on July 15. The winner goes to the November general election.

Kyle Whitmire: Is a State Lottery in Alabama’s Future?

In 1999, Alabama voters rejected a state lottery that would have paid for the college education of some students. Since then, GOP lawmakers have been relatively quiet on pushing the state lottery issue. But, some may be coming around to the idea as state education costs continue to rise. We discuss the possibility of a state lottery plus we’ll take a look at Governor Robert Bentley’s job performance with Kyle Whitmire, political commentator for and the Birmingham News.

Bethany Borg’s Nordik Fire: Electric Violin Rock Fusion

For years award winning violinist Bethany Borg has played and toured with numerous groups. Now, she's ready to take center stage showcasing all that the fiddle can do. She talks about her struggles, triumphs, and new electric violin solo project, Nordik Fire, with WBHM's Sarah Delia.

Kyle Whitmire: VA Healthcare and Alabama’s Prisons

On Tuesday Governor Robert Bentley announced a plan to overhaul the state's severely overcrowded prison system. Also this week, the Southern Poverty Law Center released a detailed report highlighting medical care problems in Alabama's prisons. Plus, we take a look at wait times for Alabama veterans to receive medical attention. Kyle Whitmire of and the Birmingham News joins us.

Kyle Whitmire: Alabama’s Primary Election

Alabama's primary election was held this week. We take a look at voter turnout rate, the results, and surprises of the primaries with Kyle Whitmire of and the Birmingham News.

Kyle Whitmire: Judge Overturns Alabama Accountability Act

A Montgomery judge ruled today that the Alabama Accountability Act is unconstitutional. He said it violates the state Constitution's requirement for the Legislature to have only one subject in a bill. Plus, Representative Patricia Todd voices her opinions on closeted lawmakers living a double life.

Kyle Whitmire: Luther Strange Returns PAC Money

Last month Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange's reelection campaign accepted a $50,000 donation from a newly registered Alabama political action committee. After the Alabama Media Group inquired about the transfer, the Strange campaign returned the donation to the PAC. Kyle Whitmire of and the Birmingham News joins us to follow the money.

Kyle Whitmire: Changes In Governor Bentley’s Staff

The governor's office announced today that former House Speaker Seth Hammett has been named the interim chief of staff for Governor Robert Bentley. Hammett replaces David Perry, who also announced today he has accepted a new position in Birmingham. Kyle Whitmire from and the Birmingham News joins us to discuss.

Kyle Whitmire: Public Prayer In Alabama

This week the Supreme Court ruled that it is lawful for prayers to be held before public events such as city council meetings. The ruling has spurred great debate especially in states like Alabama where public prayer is quite common. Kyle Whitmire of and the Birmingham News joins us to explain the ruling and offer his own thoughts on public prayer.

Kyle Whitmire: Lethal Injection Policies

In Oklahoma Tuesday night, Clayton Lockett was scheduled to be executed by lethal injection. But something went wrong. Lockett regained partial consciousness during the injection process. The execution was stopped and he died 20 minutes later from a heart attack. Death penalty politics and the sentiments behind lethal injection was a hot button issue during Alabama's 2014 legislative session. We take a closer look with Kyle Whitmire of and the Birmingham News.