WEST ALABAMA FRIDAY BRIEFING
Friday, July 21, 2023, will be hot humid and potentially stormy.
Heat indices in the 110°-to-112°-degree range thru 9:00 tonight have prompted a Heat Advisory north of I20/59 and an Excessive Heat Warning south of the corridor. But there is also a severe component to today and tomorrow's weather.
There is a Slight (2 in 5) Risk for damaging winds to 60mph with quarter size hail this afternoon and early evening roughly NE of an Aliceville to Eutaw to Marion line. A Marginal (1 in 5) Risk is in effect tomorrow afternoon south of a Northport to Aliceville line.
Fortunately, the heat and humidity will backoff this weekend and become more seasonal with highs next week in the upper 80s and lows even into the 60s.
Topping the News:
The U-S Supreme Court has ordered the GOP dominated Alabama Legislature to redraw congressional districts and add a 2nd majority/Minority district. Today is the deadline for them to hand in their homework but Greensboro Democrat Sen. Bobby Singleton believes the court will reject the controversial map. He doesn't believe the new map will give minorities enough of a population percentage to have a fair opportunity to elect candidates that reflect the views.
The state of Alabama completed the execution of 64-year-old James Barber early this morning. He was pronounced deceased by a physician at 1:56 a.m. It is the first execution by the state since Gov. Kay Ivey paused executions in November 2022 to conduct an internal review of the process following a string of problems with inserting IVs. Barber was convicted of murdering 75-year-old Dorothy Epps in 2001.
Escaped Haleyville inmate Joseph Ray Perkins is back in custody after an extensive manhunt led to his capture in Northport yesterday. Tuscaloosa County Sheriff Ron Abernathy credited cooperation among all local law enforcement agencies for Perkin's capture. Perkins was serving a 20-year prison sentence for theft.
As the new school year quickly approaches, a couple of significant construction projects are taking place in the Tuscaloosa City School System. One is a new $3.2-million gym at the Alberta School of Performing Arts and the other is $157,900 to upgrade the courtyard at Central Elementary School on Dinah Washington Ave.
The school tax holiday is underway. It began just after midnight this morning and runs until midnight Sunday. Shoppers getting their families ready for next month's start to the new school year have the opportunity to purchase certain school supplies, free of state and local sales tax.
Stillman College seniors Ta'kari Bryant and Jaela Williams have been named to the White House HBCU Scholars Initiative 2023-24 cohort. It is the 3rd straight year for Stillman students to be selected to work on issues related to historically black colleges.
Tide Pride members have been receiving a text message from UA stating they have a balance remaining on their 2023 football season ticket account. The message urges contact with the Tide Pride office by July 28 to avoid cancellation of tickets.
A subsequent text asks that the previous message be disregarded because it was sent in error. It also includes an apology for the inconvenience.
Tuscaloosa County High Grad, former Bachelorette and Dancing with the Stars winner Hannah Brown, has a new gig. She is now a podcast star. The weekly “Better Tomorrow with Hannah Brown” is being called a lifestyle podcast.
Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox kicks off his series of Town Hall Meetings tomorrow with District 3 Council Member Norman Crowe. It is a come and go meeting with no speeches, just informal conversation. The Town Hall will be at Heritage House North River (5600 Rice Mine Rd NE) from 8 until 9:30 a.m.
Remaining Town Hall Schedule:
- Thursday, August 10: TCTA, 6 – 7 p.m.
- Thursday, August 17: Skyland Elementary, 6 – 7 p.m.
- Monday, August 28: Catch-A-Taste, 5:30 – 7 p.m.
Recent storms have repeatedly knocked out power to areas of West Alabama. That has prompted Alabama Power to promote a way for customers to keep up with outages. A new service will allow customers to receive "outage alerts" and updates on the progress being made toward restoring power. You can go online to the company's Outage and Storm Center for details.
Legendary singer Tony Bennett has died at the age of 96. The pop vocalist whose career spanned eight decades had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's in 2016.
Active as a recording artist from 1949, he recorded with such artist as Count Basie, Pearl Bailey and Bing Crosby. He had hits in every decade since his beginning.
Frank Sinatra called him the greatest popular singer in the world. Bennett may be best known for his signature 1962 hit “I Left My Heart in San Francisco” but he teamed with modern artist from other genres (Lada Gaga, Amy Winehouse) to record hits far longer than any other recording artist in history.
It is 36 days until kickoff of the 2023 college football season!
You can always depend on Ole Miss Head Football Coach Lane Kiffin for a chuckle and honesty at SEC Media Days. Yesterday he told the media gathering in Nashville that Name, Image and Likeness (NIL) has legalized boosters to pay players and that has inflated egos and divided locker rooms based on differing amounts to different players and positions.
Kiffin was also asked about the boosters. His reply was he can't talk about them. He then paused and added, he wished he could.
Have a blessed weekend!