March , 2015

The North Mobile Post

News and Commentary from Around the World

    After months of threat and bluster, North Korea is ready to sit down ...
    As of Thursday night nearly 300,000 homes were still without power. Alabama ...
    Reuters is reporting that ultra-marathon runner Micah True has been found dead in ...
    President Obama spoke today before the opening session of the UN General Assembly, ...
    After ADP released fantastic job numbers on Wednesday, most experts thought the Bureau ...
Author: Sydney   While losing weight is good for your health, it may not always be ...
    Brisk economic growth continued in the fourth quarter of 2014 in the US. ...
    A routine traffic stop led to a pair of arrests on Saturday in ...
    In a blockbuster entertainment deal, Disney has purchased Lucasfilm for $4.05 billion. ...
    A 30 year old man drowned at Three Mile Creek yesterday while swimming ...

Archive for the ‘Local News’ Category

Legal Controversy Brews Over Same-Sex Marriage

Posted by David Merrell On February - 9 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS


    The battle over same-sex marriage in Alabama is not over. Last night, Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore ordered all probate judges to not issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. A federal court had previously thrown out Alabama’s ban on same-sex marriage, with Monday being the first day couples could apply for licenses.

    Moore’s decision sets up a huge showdown between federal courts and state courts. In the confusion, many probate judges are not issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples across the state.

    The case is turning into a Constitutional battle between state and federal courts. In the US, state law can not supersede federal law. However, there are currently no laws guaranteeing marriage rights to same-sex couples. The federal law prohibiting such marriages, the Defense of Marriage Act, was ruled unconstitutional in 2013. The Supreme Court is expected to rule on the legality of bans at the state level later this year.

    Lower level courts have tossed out state bans in 37 states, including Alabama. Most have either given up the fight or appealed to a higher court, but few have caused the stir Alabama has. Chief Justice Roy Moore is at the heart of the controversy, something he has not shied away from in the past. Moore is of course most famous for his refusal to remove a 10 commandments statue from the state courthouse. That incident led to him being removed from office.

    Most legal experts believe the Supreme Court will rule in favor of same-sex marriage later this year. It would be difficult to find legal justification of a ban at the state level if the court could not find justification for a ban at the federal level. Moore’s defiance appears frivolous. What remains unanswered is the level of fallout from the Chief Justice’s latest incident.

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Mardi Gras Underway

Posted by David Merrell On February - 1 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS


    Mardi Gras has officially arrived, and crowds have already begun flocking to downtown Mobile to celebrate. According to Mobile Police, nearly 80,000 people took to the streets for Saturday night’s parades. Revelers were treated to parades from the Pharaohs, Order of Hebe and Conde Explorers.

    Mobile’s Mardi Gras officially kicked off Friday night with the Conde Cavaliers. The parades will be marching through downtown until Fat Tuesday on February 17th. You can find a complete parade schedule at the Mobile Mask.

    Mardi Gras, which is French for Fat Tuesday, is the roughly two week carnival celebration before Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent. Mobile is the home of the first Mardi Gras celebration in what would become the US. The celebrations were carried out by French colonists. The first mystic society was formed in 1711, known as the Boeuf Gras Society.

    Nationally, most people think of New Orleans when Mardi Gras is brought up. The New Orleans version is generally considered more adult themed, while Mobile’s Mardi Gras has typically been more family friendly.

    Saturday’s festivities were not without their problems, as police officers responded to 18 complaints. Police made 9 misdemeanor arrests, and 3 felony arrests. Most of the arrests were alcohol related. In general, Mobile’s Mardi Gras is considered a relatively safe event.

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Saraland Voters Approve New School Tax

Posted by David Merrell On January - 28 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

Saraland seal

    Saraland voters took to the polls yesterday to vote on a property tax increase in order to fund improvements to the school system. The measure passed comfortably, with 62% voting in favor of the increase and 38% voting against. Property taxes will now increase by 7.5 mill, or about $75 for a $100,000 home.

    Saraland schools Superintendents Dr. Aaron Milner said this will be the last time the system asks for additional money. Dr. Milner said he believes the investment is a worthy one for residents, as a good school system brings higher property values.

    Saraland sought the tax increase to expand their growing school system. The student population has roughly doubled since Saraland broke off from the Mobile County Public School System a few years ago. The young system was already facing problems with overcrowding. With the additional funding, the school board plans to add 10 additional classrooms to Saraland High School and bid on two additional school buses.

    The new additions are expected to be ready by the 2016-2017 school year.

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Alabama’s Same-Sex Marriage Ban Ruled Unconstitutional

Posted by David Merrell On January - 24 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS


    Alabama became the 37th state where same-sex marriage will be legal after a federal judge threw out the state’s ban on same-sex marriages yesterday. The ruling was made by U.S. District Judge Callie V.S. Granade at the US District Court for the Southern District of Alabama. The ruling negated Alabama’s Sanctity of Marriage Amendment and the Alabama Marriage Protection Act.

    The case was brought by a same-sex couple, Cari Searcy and Kimberly Mckeand, who were married in California in 2008 but have lived in Mobile since 2011. The couple have been together for over 14 years.

    The ruling, like many others across the nation, followed in the footsteps of the Supreme Court’s decision to throw out the Defense of Marriage Act in 2013. Bans on same-sex marriage have been ruled in violation of the Equal Protection and Due Process clauses of the 14th Amendment of the Constitution. The Supreme Court is expected to rule on same-sex marriage later this year and possibly settle the issue across the nation once and for all.

    State Attorney General Luther Strange has asked for a stay on the ruling until the Supreme Court settles the matter later this year. Strange claims that irreparable harm would be done if same-sex marriages were allowed now and the Supreme Court later allows the bans to be put back into place. He also said that granting a stay would not harm the Plaintiffs.

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Fatal Crash On Highway 45

Posted by David Merrell On January - 20 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS


    Two people were killed yesterday afternoon in a head on collision on Highway 45. The victims have been identified as 38-year-old Eddye Lee Rivers Jr. of Mobile and 23-year-old Stephanie Marie Stevens of Chunchula. Two other victims were riding with Rivers and had to be taken to local hospitals for treatment.

    The accident occurred about 3 miles north of Prichard near mile marker 14. Stevens was driving a 2012 Dodge Ram, while Rivers was riding in a 1992 Chevrolet Blazer. All of the victims were ejected from their vehicles in the crash, as they were not wearing their seat belts.

    The cause of the accident is still under investigation.

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Mobile Listed As One Of 15 Hottest Cities

Posted by David Merrell On January - 13 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS


    MSN has picked Mobile as one of the 15 “hottest” cities for 2015. The Microsoft affiliated website is not referring to temperature, but rather the city’s economic prospects for the coming year. In the article, MSN declared that Mobile will become the southern trading hub of the US.

    The article points out that Mobile has the 9th largest port in the nation. Expansion of coal exports at the McDuffie Coal Terminal were specifically highlighted as a source of strength for the port’s growth. The Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce even won the “E” Star Award for Export Services last May.

    With the US relaxing the embargo against Cuba, Mobile’s port could see a whole new level of growth. The port city is located close to the island nation, and businesses are already salivating at the economic possibilities closer ties could bring.

    On top of the port’s growing success, Mobile is about to become the home of the first Airbus manufacturing facility in the US. The European jet maker will bring thousands of new jobs once the plant opens, and has already created many new construction jobs with the building of the plant.

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Hard Freeze Warning Tonight

Posted by David Merrell On January - 7 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS


    A Hard Freeze Warning has been issued for Mobile County. The warning is in effect from midnight tonight to 10:00 AM tomorrow morning. Temperatures will dip below freezing by 10:00 PM and will not go above the mark until roughly 11:00 AM. A wind advisory is also in effect from noon today until midnight tonight.

    Temperatures will drop all the way into the low 20s tonight as the Gulf Coast is blasted by arctic air. The northern wind will make the temperature feel even colder on your skin. If you have to be outside in this weather, be sure to dress in layers and bring along gloves and a hat to keep yourself from losing heat.

    Precautions should also be taken for those who will be staying home tonight. Make sure any outdoor pipes are covered, and drip water from your faucets to prevent your pipes from freezing and possibly busting. If using space heaters, make sure there are no objects too close to them that could catch fire. If using a fireplace, make sure you have a fire screen in place.

    Pets and sensitive plants should be brought indoors. If you can’t bring your pet inside, make sure it has a warm place to stay and access to water that won’t freeze over.

    Those with elderly or disabled friends or relatives should check in on them to make sure they are taken care of if possible. Many seniors live in older homes with inadequate heating. Not everyone keeps a close eye on the weather, and severe weather events like the one we are facing tonight can catch many off guard.

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Cold Temperatures Coming This Week

Posted by David Merrell On January - 4 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS


    After a relatively mild December, cold temperatures return to the forecast this week. Rain will be clearing out as the day goes on, and the temperature will begin to drop. The next three days will feature overnight lows in the upper 30s.

    The real cold gets here by midweek. Wednesday will feature a low temperature of 23 degrees according to weather.com, and the high will only be 49. Thursday’s low will be 27, but the high will only be 40. Things begin to warm slightly on Friday, with a low temp of 32 and a high of 48.

    There does not appear to be any rain in the forecast this week, so the rain gear can be put back into the closet. Trading it in for a nice winter coat is probably a good idea. Rain is expected to return late in the weekend and early next week.

    January and February are typically the coldest months along the Gulf Coast, so expect to see more cool temps over the coming weeks. Our typical pattern involves a day or two of rain as a cold front moves through, followed by a northern wind and plunging temperatures.

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New Law Could Ban Animal Sales At Flea Market

Posted by David Merrell On December - 31 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS


    Yesterday, the Mobile city council heard arguments about a proposal to end the sale of animals at the flea market. The proposed ordinance would be part of a larger animal control overhaul. Selling animals at the flea market would become a Class B Misdemeanor. The ordinance would also make it easier to prosecute those guilty of animal cruelty.

    The council heard arguments both for and against the proposal. Vendors were there to defend their business. Among the changes proposed by the vendors were requiring a license to sell animals at the flea market. Most obviously thought an outright ban was going too far.

    Critics pointed out that the conditions the animals were in was not acceptable. A veterinarian said that the animals were often sick with contagious diseases, some of them even fatal. Vendors were accused of gross negligence, and only being concerned with lining their pockets.

    The proposed ordinance would also overhaul rules surrounding animal cruelty and animal hoarding. Prosecuting offenders would become much easier under the ordinance. Hoarding has become a particularly recurring problem.

    The ordinance has been sent to the Public Safety Commission. It will be discussed on January 6th. A vote is expected on January 13th.

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Possible Bear Attack In Citronelle

Posted by David Merrell On December - 27 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS


    A dog owner in Citronelle believes his companion was attacked by a black bear this week. The attack occurred near Lambert Cemetery Road and Celeste Road. The condition of the dog, a beagle, is unknown, but it suffered deep cut wounds.

    According to the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, there has been an increase in black bears in Mobile County. Residents report the same thing, as bear sightings are becoming more common. Two factors are leading to an increase in bear sightings, the first being that the animals are protected by law. The second reason sightings are more common is that more people are moving on to their territory.

    Mobile County isn’t the only place seeing an increase in bear activity. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission killed two adult black bears and relocated two cubs this week after a teenage girl was attacked in the Eastpoint community near Apalachicola.

    Black bear attacks are rare. Around 63 people have been killed by black bears since 1900, though there has been a marked increase since 1960 due to expansion into the black bear’s habitat. Unlike grizzly bears, black bears are very timid and will usually run away from people. Attacks usually come from bears in remote areas who are not used to humans.

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The North Mobile Post was founded in April of 2011. The site serves as a blog covering Mobile County as well as news from around the world.

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