Legislative Wrap-Up: Marijuana Penalties, Religious Daycares, and Execution Methods


State lawmakers debated a controversial measure this week that would ease the penalties for marijuana possession. Currently, a person arrested for possession of marijuana can be convicted of a felony if they have one prior marijuana possession conviction, regardless of the amount. Sen. Dick Brewbaker proposed a bill that would make possession of an ounce or less of marijuana punishable by a fine instead of jail time. An offense would be a step below a misdemeanor, and carry a fine of up to $250.

And for prison inmates on death row, lawmakers discussed another possible alternative to execution — nitrogen gas. But first, Alabama Public Television’s Don Dailey talks with WBHM’s Gigi Douban about a measure sponsored by Rep. Pebblin Warren that aims to make faith-based child care centers safer. The bill would regulate religious day cares, even as they remain exempt from state licensing requirements.

Last year, we talked with Reveal reporter Amy Julia Harris, who investigated incidents of abuse and neglect at Alabama’s religious child care centers.

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Legislative Wrap-Up: State Ethics Law Revisions and the Ten Commandments

The Alabama legislature considers tightening up the state ethics law and a bill that would allow the Ten Commandments to be displayed in public buildings, including schools. The bill's sponsor says it can deter a school shooter from carrying out an attack.

Lawmaker Proposes Bill to Arm Teachers

This school shooting in Parkland, Florida this week that left 17 people dead took center stage for Alabama lawmakers. On Thursday, Republican state Representative Will Ainsworth announced plans to introduce legislation that would allow teachers to carry firearms during school hours. The law would require training.

Alabama Lawmakers Close Out Legislative Session

Alabama Public Television's Don Dailey discusses the final week of the 2017 legislative session.

Historic Monuments Bill Passes, City Council Raises Blocked

This week in the Alabama legislature, the Senate voted to block a big pay raise for the next Birmingham City Council. And after hours of heated debate Thursday, lawmakers in the Alabama House passed the controversial historic monuments bill.

House Approves Autism Therapy Coverage, Monitors Church Day Cares

Members of the state House of Representatives on Thursday passed these two bills many parents across Alabama were watching. Don Dailey, host of Alabama Public Television’s Capitol Journal talks with WBHM’s Gigi Douban about them.

Gov. Ivey Briefs Reporters and Lawmakers Advance Autism Bill

The legislature this week tried to get on with business as usual following the resignation of Gov. Robert Bentley on Monday. As Don Dailey, host of Alabama Public Television’s Capitol Journal tells WBHM’s Gigi Douban, legislative committees were busy this week. And so was Gov. Kay Ivey, who met with reporters on her third full […]

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