New State Senate Minority Leader, Toxic Waste Clean Up Plan and College Football Playoffs

Dec 2, 2014


 Democratic state Sen. Quinton Ross of Montgomery is the new minority leader in the Alabama Senate.  The Senate Democratic Caucus announced that it picked Ross to replace Sen. Vivian Davis Figures, who did not seek another term. The caucus said Figures will become the group's treasurer.

Ross is taking over the leadership of a smaller minority. Going into the Nov. 4 election, Democrats held 12 of the 35 seats in the Senate. They now have eight.

   Residents of a small community near Mobile will get to hear about efforts to clean up a nearby toxic waste site. The Environmental Protection Agency is holding a public hearing today on what’s called the Stauffer Chemical Superfund site in the town of Axis. Two chemical companies dumped waste water containing mercury near Cold Creek swamp starting in the 1950’s. That prompted Washington to list the site for clean-up back in 1983. Lieutenant Deborah Cox is with the U.S. Department of Health. She says a protective material will be poured on the contaminated areas…

 “We’re going to apply a six inch nominal layer of material called Aquablock, that is similar to concrete. It comes out in pebbles. And when it hydrates in the water, it forms a solid layer which will encapsulate the mercury that’s in the swamp.”

The EPA says the one hundred and eighty five residents of Axis are invited to attend. Once the Aquablock is poured, inspectors will return in 2016 to evaluate the area to make sure the mercury is being contained.

   Fans of the Alabama Crimson Tide may learn more about the championship playoff picture today. The committee that chooses the four competing teams will release the latest grouping tonight. Mississippi State is expected to drop out of the final four following last weekend’s loss with Ole Miss. Alabama is currently number one. Head Coach Nick Saban says if the Tide hopes to do well in the playoffs, the team will have to do better than the shaky first half against Auburn during the Iron Bowl…

“We really haven’t played a whole lot of games where we give up forty two points and win. That’s not really been our style. So we need to do a better job with our players and preparing them for the games, so we can play better, and put them in a better position that they have a chance to be successful.”

Alabama will play Missouri in the SEC Championship on Saturday.