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Arise Daily News Digest 7-29-2014
AL.COM - Governor Bentley to feds, prison reform advocates: 'You all are crazy to sue us.'
AL.COM - Feds trumpet Obamacare savings on prescription drugs, $180 million in Alabama.
AL.COM - Alabama's not alone: Governors in Tennessee and Mississippi fighting mad over immigrant relocations.
AL.COM - 'Crazy' to sue Alabama over prisons? It was regrettable but necessary, lawyer says.
AL.COM - Attorney General Strange faces tough questions from sheriffs on permits, guns at polls.
AL.COM - Pray God blocks EPA plan, chief regulator of Alabama utilities tells consumers.
AL.COM - Gov. Bentley appoints replacement for ousted Alabama State Trustee Elton Dean.
AL.COM - Gov. Bentley calls special meeting of Alabama State board after replacing two members.
AL.COM - Gov. Bentley said EPA 'trying to kill us in the South' with coal emission standards.
AL.COM - Some already working at Alabama's new Remington plant, VP says, more jobs available on rolling basis.
AL.COM - Alabama State President Gwendolyn Boyd responds to scathing letter from former trustee.
AL.COM - Gov. Bentley still considering special session for Alabama economic development incentives.
AL.COM - Alabama State president gets $1,000 a month car allowance but has no car.
AL.COM - Parker Griffith: Democrats pushed me 'with a knife' to get me to run for Alabama governor.
AL.COM - Why does Alabama struggle to fund government? Bentley says education gets growth taxes.
ALABAMA POLITICAL REPORTER - Losing GOP Senate Candidate Complains of Legal Violations to AG
ALABAMA POLITICAL REPORTER - Gov. Bentley Sets the Record Straight
ALABAMA SCHOOL CONNECTION - Public School Spending By Category
DECATUR DAILY - The Decatur Daily: Alabamians watch taxpayers’ dollars.
TUSCALOOSA NEWS - Greene County marks 45th year since historic election.
GADSDEN TIMES - Medicare's own health looking up.
GADSDEN TIMES – Contributor William Canary: Fix Highway Trust Fund.
ANNISTON STAR - Moratorium extended on permitting short-term lenders to set up shop.
ANNISTON STAR - The Anniston Star: Alabama needs a leader who values good government over ideology.
MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER - Audit: Area VA staff ordered to change wait times.
MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER - Complaints turn to inexperience of Boyd's recent hires.
MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER - The Montgomery Advertiser: Refuse to accept failure for kids.
OPELIKA-AUBURN NEWS - Some Ala animal shelters facing problems.
WASHINGTON POST - A third of consumers with credit files had debts in collections last year.
WASHINGTON POST - Would boosting the eligibility age for Medicare save it from ‘bankruptcy’?
WASHINGTON POST - White House says delays in curbing greenhouse gas emissions may cost billions.
WASHINGTON POST - More than a fifth of the population in 17 states received Social Security benefits last year.
WASHINGTON POST - America really is two different political countries these days.
WASHINGTON POST - Columnist Dana Milbank: North Carolina Republicans put ideology above lives.
WASHINGTON POST - Columnist Catherine Rampell: Sick? Now you can stay home.
NEW YORK TIMES - Spending Big to Fight Big Donors in Campaigns
NEW YORK TIMES - How the Government Exaggerates the Cost of College
NEW YORK TIMES – Columnist Jesse Wegman: The Injustice of Marijuana Arrests
NEW YORK TIMES – Contributor Courtney Martin: Child Care and the Overwhelmed Parent
The Basics: Alabama's Meager but Vital TANF Program
The cost of living has increased in the last two decades, but federal money for temporary cash aid for very low-income families has not kept up. The federal government in 1997 froze its allocations for the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program, informally known as welfare. Since then, the number of families receiving benefits has plummeted in Alabama and nationwide, even as needs mounted during the Great Recession. Years of inflation also have eroded the buying power of Alabama's already meager benefits.
Fewer Alabama families are receiving TANF aid, and those benefits don't go nearly as far as they once did. This fact sheet by ACPP policy analyst Carol Gundlach details TANF's origins and structure, examines its eligibility requirements and considers how the program could do a better job of helping low-income Alabamians endure tough times.
7-10-14 ACPP Report
Lead article: Prison reform takes center stage
The Basics: Child Nutrition Programs in Alabama
Many hungry children miss out on far more than regular meals. Hunger can do serious, long-term harm to a child's health and ability to learn, and childhood hunger is a bigger challenge in Alabama than in most other states. More than one in four of the state's children live in families with incomes below the poverty level, and more than one in five Alabama families with children say they have trouble putting enough food on the table.
Three key child nutrition programs -- the National School Lunch Program, the School Breakfast Program and the Summer Food Service Program -- have been shown to help improve children's health and ability to learn. This fact sheet by ACPP policy analyst Carol Gundlach examines what these programs mean for hundreds of thousands of Alabama children and considers some ways the programs could serve even more hungry children.
Out of Step: Alabama's Unusual State Tax State system -- 2014 update
Taxes are the tools that Americans use to pay for education, public health, transportation and other elements of the common good. But in Alabama, the tax system is upside down, with low- and middle-income people paying twice the share of their income in state and local taxes that the top 1 percent pay.
This updated fact sheet looks at the different ways that states collect revenues to pay for public services and examines some of the differences that place Alabama's tax system out of line with the way most other states do things.
Special enrollment periods for health coverage
Initial open enrollment for coverage in the Health Insurance Marketplace has ended, but you still may be able to sign up for a plan. Alabamians who experience certain life events may qualify for a Special Enrollment Period without waiting until the next open enrollment (Nov. 15, 2014, through Feb. 15, 2015).
This issue brief looks at the life changes and other opportunities that may allow people to enroll in Marketplace coverage throughout the year.