5/29/2020 News Recap

On this week's news recap podcast, Josh and Parker begin our Alabama stories by discussing the Sessions' campaign's call for five debates with Coach Tommy Tuberville, followed by a discussion of API's RESTORE Alabama Agenda and a hit piece CNN did on Alabama beaches over the holiday weekend. In national news, we discuss the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery and George Floyd. To end the show, we highlight President Trump's fight with Twitter and our recommendations for this week. To learn…

The Need for Education Reform Didn’t Die with the Defeat of Amendment One

When voters defeat a proposed state amendment, it is often thought that the matter is put to rest. That is often the case, but when Alabama’s voters went to the polls in March and shot down a proposal to replace the elected state board of education in favor of one appointed by the governor, they only answered the question of the board’s composition. They did not answer the deeper problem of the board’s accomplishment. Whatever the makeup of the board,…

The RESTORE Alabama Agenda

The 2020 Regular Session of the Alabama State Legislature is behind us. Did anyone notice? It was a Session marked more by what didn’t happen than by what did. One minute the lobbyists were being paid well to try and get marijuana legalized, state budgets were flush, and gambling bills were once again all that the media could talk about. And then the coronavirus came through like a bullet train on greased rails and Goat Hill became a ghost town.…

Alabama Policy Institute Unveils RESTORE Alabama Plan, Asks Governor to Call a Special Legislative Session to Address Key COVID-19 Related Issues

Birmingham, Ala. – Today the Alabama Policy Institute (API) released to the public and submitted to Governor Ivey and to the Governor’s Special Task Force the “RESTORE Alabama Plan.” The plan, Responsible Efficient Solutions to Open and Revive the Economy (RESTORE) advocates six major points of policy which must be addressed to help Alabama recover from the Covid-19 pandemic. API is asking Governor Ivey to call a special Legislative Session and to include API’s RESTORE Alabama Plan in her formal call.…

Points of Policy: The $1.25 Billion School Bond Issue

In this Points of Policy edition of the 1819 Podcast, API's Director of Policy Strategy and General Counsel Phil Williams is joined by API's Senior Director of Fiscal Policy Justin Bogie to discuss the recently enacted $1.25 billion school bond issue and whether or not such an act is good policy during a pandemic.   To listen, click here.

Debt and Shiny New Buildings Will Not Improve Education in Alabama

In the waning days of the abbreviated 2020 Regular Session, the Alabama State Legislature approved a $1.25 billion school bond issuance. The money would be used for capital improvement projects, i.e. construction, at K-12 public schools, colleges, and universities. The bill received nearly unanimous support, with just five House members voting no. While the fate of the bill ultimately lies with Governor Ivey, she proposed a similar issuance (albeit $250 million smaller) in her State of the State address and…

5/15/2020 News Recap

This week, Josh and Parker discuss the largest education budget in Alabama history and whether it was a wise move for a state likely to see decreased revenue in the future. We then discuss Rep. April Weaver's resignation from the Legislature for a spot in the Trump administration as well as the rejection of an LGBT charter school's application to open in Birmingham. In national news, we discuss the GOP winning congressional special elections in Wisconsin and California and whether…

5/8/2020 News Recap

In this week's news recap, Josh and Parker discuss an interesting new documentary called "Plandemic", a bill in the State House to limit the Governor's emergency powers, sexual assault allegations against former Vice President Joe Biden, and more.   To listen, click here.

After Calling for Reform, API Applauds Legislative Move to Refine Emergency Powers

Birmingham, Ala. - State legislators are now considering a reform that was also recommended by the Alabama Policy Institute in its recent Liberty First podcast. The podcast, which is already one of Apple Podcast's "Top Government Podcasts," suggested that the Legislature retake its rightful powers to quarantine and to drive the response of the state in a long-term emergency. "Those who are executing the quarantine in a pandemic must have authority from us, the people, which we generally confer through our legislative officials," API's Professorial Fellow…

Responding to API Report, Department of Labor Clarifies Unemployment Eligibility

Birmingham, Ala. - On April 23rd, the Alabama Department of Labor (ADOL) issued a warning that deciding to leave work or failing to return to work in order to collect increased unemployment benefits may qualify as fraud and be subject to prosecution. Thus ADOL clarified that even with new benefits available, the criteria to receive unemployment compensation still requires that an employee be involuntarily separated from his or her employer. The announcement came just two days after the Alabama Policy Institute released its report…