News

Birmingham Budget Passes After Debates Over School, Discretionary Funding

The Birmingham City Council passed Mayor Randall Woodfin's fiscal 2020 budget. Woodfin said his proposed $451 million budget was "as lean as they come."

Two Workers Found Dead After Trench Collapse in Hoover

Two workers were found dead Tuesday evening after a trench collapsed on them in a Hoover neighborhood. The discovery came after an hours-long rescue and recovery effort.

Birmingham Sees Conflict Resolution as Key to Breaking Cycle of Violence

Violent crime remains high in Birmingham, particularly among young black men. Now, the city is partnering with several nonprofits to teach skills they hope will prevent conflicts from escalating.

Biometric Technology Comes to Birmingham Airport

Air travelers flying out of Birmingham can now identify themselves with the touch of a finger or an eye scan. Officials at the Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport on Thursday unveiled new biometric technology from the company CLEAR.

Birmingham School Officials Say Schools Can Work Around Woodfin’s Proposed Budget Cut

Birmingham school officials say it's unclear how they'll make up a proposed $2 million funding gap from the city, but it won't put a huge burden on the school system.

Frustration With Health Department Intensifies as Environmental Groups Seek to Overturn ABC Coke’s Air Permit Renewal

Environmental groups say ABC Coke’s air permit renewal issued in April is flawed and are appealing to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to agree that it does not comply with requirements of the federal Clean Air Act.

Jones, Byrne Lead in Fundraising Among Candidates in 2020 US Senate Race

Democratic incumbent Sen. Doug Jones raised $1.8 million for his election campaign during the past three months, outpacing the still-forming field of candidates for Alabama’s 2020 U.S. Senate elections.

Energy Storage Research Center Opens in Birmingham

Energy officials from around the country gathered in Birmingham Tuesday to mark the opening of the Energy Storage Research Center. They say the facility has big implications for the future of renewable power.

Avondale Elementary Climate Frustrates Parents and Teachers

Next month, many area students go back to school. But at Birmingham's Avondale Elementary School, several teachers and students won't be returning after what they say was a chaotic year.

New Virus Threatens State’s Cotton Crop

Many of the state’s cotton farmers are monitoring their fields more closely after agriculture officials issued warnings about a new virus threatening their crops.

Putting a Price Tag on a Fish Kill

Last month's wastewater spill at a chicken plant in Hanceville resulted in the largest reported fish kill in years. Environmental groups and residents want to see hefty fines against those responsible for the incident, but how do officials come up with a dollar amount?

Neighborhoods Want Trust Fund Set Up From Proposed ABC Coke’s Benzene Pollution Case

The North Birmingham community made clear this week that it wants money from an ABC Coke pollution penalty to be used to create a trust fund to benefit residents in the surrounding area.

Partnership Aims to Make Birmingham’s Economic Growth More Equitable

Birmingham has gained attention for its downtown rebirth. But the Birmingham area economy still falls behind similar cities, particularly when it comes to job growth. A partnership announced in December between the city and the Brookings Institution, a Washington, D.C. think tank, aims to boost the Birmingham economy with an eye toward making those gains more equitable.

Birmingham City Council Approves Healthy Food Overlay District

The Birmingham City Council voted Tuesday to establish a “healthy food overlay district,” designed to make healthy food options more accessible for the approximately two-thirds of the city’s population that lives within food deserts.

The Risky Business of Music Festivals

Later this month, Freedom Fest makes its debut in downtown Birmingham. But music festivals around here seem to come and go. We sent WBHM’s Janae Pierre to find out why it’s so hard to keep a music festival going here in the Magic City.

The Story Behind Parcak’s “Archaeology from Space”

UAB anthropology professor Sarah Parcak uses satellite images to find buried sites in Egypt and around the world. She takes readers on that journey of discovery in her new book, "Archaeology from Space: How the Future Shapes Our Past."

FBI Records Could Have Solved A Civil Rights Cold Case. Now It’s Too Late

The murder of the Rev. James Reeb was unsolved for more than 50 years. Now, Alabama officials who might have pursued prosecution tell NPR that if the FBI had shared its case file with them, they would have investigated Reeb's murder years earlier.

“Welcome to Night Vale” Podcast Brings Bizarre Stories to Birmingham

The popular podcast “Welcome to Night Vale” can be a little hard to describe. It takes place in a fictional desert town with stories told through a community radio station where conspiracy theories are real. They bring their bizarre mix of horror and humor to Birmingham's Lyric Theatre Wednesday.

Alabama Woman’s Case Highlights State’s Aggressive Prosecution of Pregnant Women

    NPR’s Audie Cornish speaks with Amy Yurkanin, a healthcare reporter for AL.com, about the case of Marshae Jones and how it has brought attention to Alabama’s aggressive prosecution of pregnant women.

A Conversation with Senator Doug Jones

In the early 2000s Doug Jones did something many viewed as impossible. He prosecuted and secured the convictions of two Klan members responsible for the 16th Street Church bombing.  Four young black girls were murdered during that terrorist attack. Their names were Addie Mae Collins, Cynthia Wesley, Carole Robertson, and Denise McNair. In 2017, Doug […]

District Attorney Drops Charges Against Marshae Jones

Jefferson County Bessemer Cutoff District Attorney Lynneice Washington announced Wednesday afternoon that she has dropped the manslaughter case against Marshae Jones, the Alabama woman who was charged in the death of her fetus when she was shot in the stomach during an argument.

Attorney Explains Motion To Dismiss In Case Of Alabama Woman Indicted In Death Of Her Fetus

Marshae Jones is facing a manslaughter charge for "intentionally causing the death of her fetus."

Former U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance Accuses Trump Administration of Holding Migrants in Concentration Camps

Allegations that children are living in squalid conditions, forced to sleep on concrete floors with limited access to bathrooms and no way to brush their teeth or bathe, have prompted calls for action and pushback from officials with Customs and Border Protection.

“Harsh and Sad at the Same Time” – Residents React to Case of Marshae Jones

Marshae Jones was charged with manslaughter in the death of her fetus after being shot in the stomach during a fight. The case has drawn international attention, with people on both sides of the debate over whether a fetus should have the rights of personhood.

Birmingham Celebrates Historic A.G. Gaston Motel Anniversary

Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. often planned strategy for the civil rights movement in room 30 at the A.G. Gaston Motel. For others, it was a place for wedding receptions and fancy dances. As restoration of the famed but deteriorating structure begins, Birmingham celebrated the motel’s anniversary and its founder on Monday.

Lawyers File Motion to Dismiss Charges Against Woman Whose Fetus was Killed in Fight

Lawyers for a Jefferson County woman who was charged last week with manslaughter in the death of her 5-month-old fetus filed a motion to dismiss on Monday.

Alabama Woman Charged with Manslaughter in the Death of Her Own Fetus Awaits District Attorney Decision

Marshae Jones has been charged with manslaughter for the death of her own fetus, even though a different woman shot Jones in the stomach. Police say Jones was endangering her fetus by starting the fight.

The 15-Year Fight to Integrate Public Schools

The U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark 1954 ruling in the Brown v. Board of Education case struck down racial segregation in schools. It wasn’t until 1969 the court forced school integration in a case called Alexander v. Holmes. Birmingham-Southern College professor Will Hustwit wrote about the case in his new book.

Justices Won’t Revive Alabama Ban on Abortion Procedure

The U.S. Supreme Court won't revive Alabama's ban on the most commonly used procedure in second-trimester abortions. The measure has been blocked by lower courts.

Persistent Potholes Draw Phallic Painting

Drive around Birmingham and you probably have to dodge potholes. A strategy middle school boys would love is drawing new attention to the problem. Recently, someone sprayed penises on potholes in an effort to get city officials to respond.

Young Democrats Hold Presidential Debate Watch Party

Several of the candidates have visited Alabama in the last two months, but most have not. The president of the group Birmingham Young Democrats says while many in attendance may be leaning toward a particular candidate already, the debates give them a chance to consider the full slate.

Federal Appeals Court Hears Arguments in Birmingham Minimum Wage Case

Last summer, a three-judge panel said in its ruling that the "plaintiffs have stated a plausible claim that the Minimum Wage Act had the purpose and effect of depriving Birmingham's black citizens equal economic opportunities on the basis of race."