Solomon Crenshaw, Jr.

BirminghamWatch



Solomon Crenshaw, Jr is a reporter with BirminghamWatch, a nonprofit, independent news site. WBHM and BirminghamWatch collaborate through a content-sharing partnership.

Commission rejects opening courthouse for Saturday absentee voting

Commissioner Sheila Tyson presented the resolution to open the Jefferson County Courthouse for Saturday absentee voting. Others felt the special circumstances of the pandemic had passed.

Jefferson County Commission approves extra money for The World Games

Commissioners approved allotting an additional $4 million to help offset the deficit incurred by organizers of The World Games. The matter passed on a 4-1 vote.

Jefferson County Commission delays discussion on World Games deficit

The World Games officials have asked the commission for an additional $4 million to help close a reported $14 million debt after the July event.

Jefferson County Commission to look for other absentee voting space after alleged voter suppression

Bessemer Absentee Voting Clerk Karen Dunn Burks last week accused Jefferson County government of voter suppression because of plans to move her office from the courtroom basement to another office also in the basement. She contended the plan created unfair conditions and accommodations for voters and was inhumane.

Security measures for The World Games will muck up downtown but will not close it

With all the activity scheduled in downtown Birmingham during The World Games, some have wondered whether they’ll be able to get to government offices. The answer for the most part is yes, but it’s going to take some planning.

The stadium bid for Woodlawn High School is approved. It could be built by the fall

The Birmingham Board of Education has approved a bid for Woodlawn High School's new football stadium. It could be built by fall 2022.

JeffCo Commission announces $1.1 billion deal with Smucker’s

Food maker J.M. Smucker, known for its peanut butter and jelly products, is bringing a manufacturing and distribution plant to McCalla.

Board rejects bid for Woodlawn High School stadium

The Birmingham Board of Education rejected the bid to build a stadium and fieldhouse on the campus of Woodlawn High School. This comes just months after the ceremonial groundbreaking.

JeffCo considers kicking in $500K to bring USFL to Birmingham

On Thursday, the Jefferson County Commission is set to consider approving $500K to help bring the United States Football League to Birmingham next year.

JeffCo commissioners begin redrawing district lines

Jefferson County Commissioners are deciding between three proposed maps for redistricting.

JeffCo Employees Getting 3% Raises In Budget Passed Thursday

The Jefferson County Commission unanimously passed a $882,750,611 budget last week. It includes a 3% across-the-board raise for county employees.

‘Can-Do Cal’ Takes A Customer-Focused Approach To New Job As JeffCo County Manager

Cal Markert will start his new role of Jefferson County Manager on Oct. 1, 2021.

COVID Drives Up Costs At Jefferson County Jails

The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office asked for more money during the final weeks of the 2020 fiscal year. The apparent reason was a hefty cleaning bill at the two county jails. But commissioners learned that increased expenses for feeding prisoners brought on by pandemic protocols contributed to the large request.

Health Official Warns About The Danger Of Being In Crowds As High School Football Fully Kicks Off

High school football games are set to fully kick off this week. Health experts say you should continue to wear a mask even if you're fully vaccinated because these events are likely to spread COVID-19.

JeffCo Commissioner Cautions About Travel Expenses

The commissioner's eye was drawn to a trip someone from the county compliance office will next month to the Compliance & Ethics Institute Conference in Las Vegas. That trip will cost $3,354.55.

No Place Like Home As Woodlawn High Breaks Ground For New, On-Campus Football Stadium

The new stadium is expected to be ready for the 2022 football season. It'll accommodate 2,800 spectators, and it will include an artificial turf athletic field, renovated field house and a stadium lighting and sound system.

JeffCo Commissioners Look Forward To Dropping Social Distance At Meetings

Restrictions prompted by Gov. Kay Ivey's coronavirus public health orders will expire at the end of the month.

Governor Shuts Down Extra Help For The Unemployed, Says Workers Needed To Invigorate The Economy

Alabama will stop participating in all federally funded pandemic unemployment compensation programs beginning June 19. Gov. Kay Ivey says she made the decision because of the increasing difficulty of business owners and employers to find workers to fill jobs.

Jefferson County Nears Deal For New Humane Society

The plan is for Jefferson County to purchase lots one and two of the property, which would remain under county ownership. The Greater Birmingham Humane Society would purchase lot three and build an animal hospital and adoption control facility there.

JeffCo Commission Moves Toward Buying Land Next To Shady Grove Fire Station, Selling Old West End Health Center

Jefferson County wants to buy property from the state of Alabama. The land is located next to the Shady Grove Fire Department.

JeffCo’s County Manager Plans Retirement After 10 Years Helping To Navigate Rough Waters

Jefferson County’s one and only county manager says he plans to retire this year.

Jeffco Commission Gets Clean Bill Of Health After State Review Of Its Accounts

The Jefferson County Commission is conducting its duties in accordance with state law, says a report from the Alabama Examiners of Public Accounts.

Jefferson County Commission OK’s More Cleanup Help In Fultondale

"Somebody has to get those big trees out of that creek or it’s going to back up and start flooding and start blocking roads and flooding these houses that are damaged," said Commissioner Joe Knight.

Jefferson County Commission May Hire More Road Clean-Up Help

Jefferson County Commissioners are considering whether to hire temporary workers to clean up litter along county roads.

Gambling Proposals Must Pass The ‘Smell Test’ Before Going To Voters, Ivey Tells Lawmakers

The governor recapped the challenges of 2020, particularly on schools and the economy.

Settlement Reached To Address ABC Coke Pollution

The Drummond Company will now be required to follow a leak detection and repair program for the rest of the plant’s existence.

Park Board Approves Making Legion Field A 24/7 Vaccination Site

Legion Field has been operating as a testing site for COVID-19. Now officials want to expand the operation to include coronavirus vaccinations.

JeffCo Commission Picks Up Where Feds Left Off, Will Pay For COVID Time Off

The Jefferson County Commission unanimously approved funding this week that will help pay county employees for time off related to COVID-19.

COVID Vaccinations Begin For People 75+ Years Old

Jefferson County residents 75 and older started receiving the COVID-19 vaccine this week.

Scales Announces Bid For Mayor

The county commissioner would be the first elected female mayor of the city.

Turning Red Line Green: Virtual Conference Brings Attention To Underserved Areas

In the past, certain areas of Birmingham that were up for redevelopment faced discriminatory practices by banks and insurance companies. Some bankers, regulators, developers and entrepreneurs want to change that.

Jefferson County Emerges From Consent Decree After 45 Years

After 45 years, Jefferson County has been released from its consent decree.