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Alabama Senator Paid by Non-Profit

Birmingham, AL – A state senator helped secure funding from the state's two-year college system for a nonprofit program in Birmingham and then received about $4,000 a month from the program for nearly three years.

The Birmingham News reported Sunday that Democratic state Senator E.B. McClain of Midfield was paid by Heritage to Hope.

The program received more than $310,00 from February 2004 through September 2006 to operate a computer-based tutoring program that helped 13 high school dropouts complete at least one level of training toward getting their high school equivalency diplomas.

The Reverend Sam Pettagrue created the nonprofit and said the program paid McClain as a consultant after he helped it receive funding.

McClain said in an interview today that working to improve education in his district is a passion, and he is now helping another similar program, Project Chance, without being paid as a consultant.

Pettagrue used more than $250,000, or three-fourths of the program's state funding, to pay his son, himself and McClain, according to the program's tax records and interviews with the three.

McClain said there may not be time sheets or other records of his work, but he's satisfied - that he earned his pay.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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