Governor Robert Bentley’s 2015 budget recommends a decrease in Education Trust Fund (ETF) appropriations. The Education Rolling Reserve Act of 2011 (ERRA) places a cap which greatly influences this appropriation limit; however, Governor Bentley still recommends appropriations of $92 million above the ERRA limit.

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MORE ON API in the Editorials

Christ, Christmas, and Counseling

We call it “the most wonderful time of the year,” but for many, it simply is not. Those who suffer from depression or anxiety often struggle more during the holiday season than at any other time of the year. The loss of loved ones seems magnified when we are faced with the rituals of the […]

The Medical Marijuana Bill Looks More Like a Trojan Horse

There is a great deal of effort going on in Montgomery to legalize the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes. So much effort, in fact, that a review of the draft legislation indicates that the Republican majority may well be asked very soon to throw out every conservative principle that each of them ran on […]

Should All Rights Give Way to the Transgender Revolution?

Ever heard the maxim “Your right to swing your fist ends just where my nose begins?” It’s one the federal courts need to remember this week. On Thursday, the 11th Circuit US Court of Appeals will hear a case that originated in Florida related to transgender students and school bathroom usage. This decision will affect […]

MORE ON Education

Educational Freedom Enables Personal, Economic Hope for Alabama’s Children

Part of the promise of school choice is that access to better education will result in increased economic mobility for those trapped in poverty. In our state, programs like the Alabama Accountability Act (AAA) give children in underperforming schools or lower-income homes scholarships to private schools.

Relationships between parents and teachers are key to improving education

I imagine that when the recent National Assessment of Educational Progress numbers were released, somewhere in Mississippi a few very tired, long suffering education bureaucrats poured a hot toddy from the kitchen of an antebellum home, raised their glasses to the west, and told Alabama, “well, you won’t have old Mississippi to kick around anymore.” […]

Off With Their Heads!

This past week “IT” finally happened. Mississippi surpassed Alabama in overall rankings for K-12 education. What absolute fresh hell is this? In truth it is not that fresh. Alabama has been limping behind the pack for decades and this year’s “Nation’s Report Card” by the National Center for Education Statistics represented a final bottoming out. […]

MORE ON Fiscal Policy

For Whom the Bridge Tolls

If you’ve followed the news lately you could not have missed the fact that there has been a kerfluffle of the highest order near the Alabama coastline. Like a scene from the old fairy tale, the Three Billy Goats Gruff, the local populace has thrown the “bridge trolls” into the bay and seemingly defeated the infamous toll payments that were at issue. The difference between our coastal brethren and sistren and the Goats is that the Goats got a bridge out of it.

Statewide Radio: Phil Williams on Viewpoint Alabama

API director of policy strategy Phil Williams recently appeared on Viewpoint Alabama, a weekly radio show that is broadcast on over 60 Alabama radio stations, to discuss the potential toll bridge in Mobile, the increase in the gas tax, and more. You can listen to the interview here (beginning at the 0:30 timestamp). Viewpoint Alabama, […]

J. Pepper Bryars: Time to stop daydreaming about a lottery

Lottery supporters were left saying “so close …” last week after the latest attempt to establish the game in Alabama collapsed under the weight of competing interests and power plays. It was reminiscent of the failed lotto player, successfully matching his numbers one-by-one until his hopes are dashed when that final digit proves ever elusive. […]

MORE FROM Andrew Kinnaird

Keeping Better Track of Alabama’s State Property

Supposedly the State of Alabama owns 6,560 individual pieces of real estate. The State “supposedly” owns them because the database from which this information comes, the State Department of Conservation and Natural Resources’ (DCNR) “State-Owned Land Registry,” is replete with low-quality information. For instance, 1,957 of the 6,560 property listings have no explanation of how […]

Incentives for Tax System Changes

April 18th was Tax Freedom Day for 2013.  On average, all income earned prior to April 18th went to pay federal, state and local taxes. This means that Americans were solely working for the government for the first 4.5 months of this year. In 2011 alone, 145,579,530 federal individual tax returns were filed. The U.S. […]

In Upcoming Elections, One Vote Matters

The Declaration of Independence states that to secure certain unalienable rights, “Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed….” Likewise, the Alabama Constitution notes “[t]hat all political power is inherent in the people, and all free governments are founded on their authority….” Sadly, the powers of modern government […]