Former Speaker Hubbard Sentenced, Water Administrator Keeps Position

Jul 8, 2016

Four years and eight years probation.  That is the sentenced handed down to Former Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard after being convicted of twelve of twenty-three felony ethics charges last month.

The State says Hubbard improperly solicited lobbyists and company executives for consulting contracts and using his political office to benefit his clients.                      

Former House Speaker Mike Hubbard and his attorney Bill Baxley

Defense Lawyer Bill Baxley defended Hubbard’s Character after the sentenced was delivered….

“We will appeal this case all (of) the way.  I believe with every fiber of my being that at the end of all of this, he will be totally vindicated.  He will be exonerated.”

Hubbard will also have to pay $210,000 in fines.  Prosecutors argued Hubbard betrayed the trust of voters and his fellow lawmakers and asked for a five-year prison sentence.  Hubbard was one of the state's most powerful politicians. He led the 2010 GOP takeover of the Alabama Legislature.

Students from the University of Alabama in Huntsville, UAB and Auburn made up one of five teams to win a global infrastructure award this week.

The award honors plans to combat infrastructure problems in the United States.

Ali* Darwish is the lead engineer on the Alabama team. He says it is vital that we address our infrastructure needs throughout the state.

“We have serious issues with our infrastructure and we have to address them before it’s too late. We have seen floods and storms and tornadoes invading our state and there will be a lot of them. We have money and we have technology. The problem is prioritizing what we have to do.”

Darwish says that the team’s idea will use drones to locate imperfections and use virtual reality technology to allow engineers to perform inspections remotely.

A north Alabama water system will retain its top administrator after a scare involving chemical contamination.

Members of the West Morgan-East Lawrence Water and Sewer Authority rejected a board member's move to oust general manager Don Sims on Thursday.

Sims warned the system's customers not to drink the water last month because of the presence of two chemicals. State officials said there was no emergency, and the water is now being mixed with other water to reduce chemical levels.

The Decatur Daily reports that board member Mark Clark asked fellow members to seek Sims' resignation, saying the move was needed to restore confidence in the water system. But the move failed when no one offered a second to his motion.

Sims has been general manager for 41 year.