Monday, March 20, 2017

A Muscle Shoals School Parent Speaks Out


From a reader:


Is sunscreen medicated?

Apparently so, if you're a student at Muscle Shoals. In a recent meeting at Muscle Shoals High School, band members and parents were told sunscreen is medicated and cannot be shared.

The Muscle Shoals band is getting ready to go on a trip to Hawaii and in doing so they had a meeting about rules and expectations. In these "rules" the students were told if they run out of sunscreen then they will just get burned because they cannot share sunscreen as it is medicated. But they are allowed to keep the medicated sunscreen ON/WITH them?

As per school policy, any medicated item (including cough drops and lip balm) must be kept with the nurse and a student must see the nurse to use such item. So, guidelines state the nurse should keep every individual bottle of medicated sunscreen on her/him and distribute to the student when needed and then taken back up. But the school doesn't have a nurse attending the week long trip, the band director(s) will be keeping all medications EXCEPT said medicated sunscreen that can't be shared without facing punishment. 

So, is sunscreen medicated or is it not? If so, then it shouldn't be on or in possession of the student. If it's not, then why can't they share instead of getting sunburned if they run out?

*****

These school "medication" rules are bureaucracy run man. Lip balm and sunscreen? Why not mouthwash and toothpaste? It would seem that any illicit substance could much more easily be placed in mouthwash than lip balm.

*****

We've been sent information on a certain private school. We will be publishing a blog on wasted federal money; however, we do not publish sensitive private information unless it relates to waste of our taxpayer dollars. This has always been our policy and we don't see that changing in future.




Sunday, March 19, 2017

The Tale of a Rob(ber) Baron...or Two


Rob & Michelle Jones

Rob Jones has been a member of the Florence-Lauderdale Tourism Board since August 2016. Jones, along with his wife Michelle, owns Singin' River Brewing, a microbrewery located on the outskirts of downtown Florence. A few blocks to the east is Blue Water Brewing, the only other such endeavor located in Florence. Blue Water is owned by Aaron Hannah and Patricia Wilkins, neither of whom is affiliated with the tourism board. Friendly competitors? Well, competitors at least. 


Since both brewing companies are in Florence, Florence-Lauderdale Tourism should be promoting them equally...rather like Rob Carnegie promoted the area's two escape rooms equally. Oh, sorry, he didn't. What do you think that was about? No matter, let's now concentrate on how Florence's tourism department is promoting these two breweries.

What Rob Carnegie posts in tourism's Instagram account is also posted on its Twitter and Facebook accounts under the name “Visit Florence, AL.” Wonder what the rest of Lauderdale County thinks of that? No matter, as we said, for the moment we're strictly looking at the blurbs for the town's two breweries, so let's have at it:

March 18, 2017 – Post for Singin' River's weekend patio bar

March 13, 2017 – Post to advertise the patio bar's opening at Singin' River

February 21, 2017 – Post on beer tasting at Singin' River


February 18, 2017 – Post on Singin' River...just because, we guess

February 15, 2017 – Post on Singin' River presents a songwriters' showcase

January 25, 2017 – Post on a Singin' River fun run


January 17, 2017 – Post on Singin' River songwriters showcase

We're not going all the way back to August of last year; we think we have enough posts to spot any trends. Let's see...seven posts for Singin' River owned by one of Rob Carnegie's bosses...and for Blue Water? Let's add them up...there's...and there's...hmmm, there's none.

Anyone have any ideas why Rob Carnegie favors a business owned by his boss? The reader who first brought this to our attention did. Yes, according to the Alabama ethics law, it's a possible crime. Whether Rob Jones has joined Rob Carnegie in this alleged crime or not, we don't know. Our reader has told us his intentions of filing an ethics complaint. We still feel that the owners of Blue Water Brewing should also file a complaint. Stock up on popcorn.




Saturday, March 18, 2017

Ethics Complaint to be Filed against Killen's Connie Parrish


When you break ethics laws, it says a lot about your morals and your character, and if you’re going to do that for a little bit of extra money there, what else are you going to do? - Ryan Blessing

Connie Parrish - Used Position to Secure Raise for Mother

Common sense and logic? They're in very short supply in the Shoals, especially among those who pretend to serve the public. Now it seems we have three new ethics controversies in Lauderdale County alone. We've previously covered Florence school board member Britton Watson and her ties to UNA. Here's the skinny on the Killen controversy.

Connie Parrish is a Killen councilwoman; her mother works at the senior center. Late last year, Parrish requested a raise for her mother...and got it. She did not vote on the issue, but she is the one who introduced it and elaborated on why her mother deserved the pay increase.

Councilman Ryan Blessing is filing an ethics complaint against Parrish. Not only is what Parrish did unethical, but according to the law, is a crime...a Class B Felony. Killen mayor Tim Tubbs waltzed all around it.

*****

Now, something else we noticed while watching the Killen council meeting: Tim Tubbs doesn't listen. Blessing clearly stated he had requested and received an opinion on Parrish's actions; then Tubbs stated nothing could be done until the opinion of the ethics commission was solicited and received.

And we thought only women had a problem being heard in meetings...

*****

Next we'll take on Rob Carnegie and his blatant shilling for Singin' River Brewery, a company owned by his "boss" Rob Jones...




Friday, March 17, 2017

Ethics: Killen & Florence-Lauderdale Tourism


Ryan Blessing, a Killen town council member, is prepared to pursue ethics charges against a fellow council member over possible wrong-doing at the senior center. We're guessing it will be months before the ethics commission issues a statement. We'll have more on this later.

*****

Favoritism from Rob Carnegie has again come into question. From a reader:

Florence Tourism Photo

I wanted to correct you on two things. First, it's Singin' River beer not Singing River beer. Next, I've been to the brewery and while you can't tell it in the tourism photo, there's a fence around the patio at the brewery so they can sell beer legally there.

But I'm questioning the tourism organization virtually advertising Singin' River so much. There's a second brewery in Florence just blocks away from Singin' River. It's Blue Water and it's owned by someone I know who could use a good plug now and then.

Rob Jones

I've not seen where Carnegie or whoever said Singin' River was better, but one of the owners of the brewery is Rob Jones who's on the tourism board. So he's virtually Rob Carnegie's boss and Rob's pretty obviously a suck up. So isn't this all illegal or at least unethical?

*****

While we don't think it's illegal, it is very unethical, but that hasn't stopped Carnegie before. Nothing can be done about it until someone files an ethics complaint. We would think the owner(s) of Blue Water would be the obvious candidate, but anyone may do so. If anyone has evidence that Jones was in actual collusion, the complaint can be filed against both.




Thursday, March 16, 2017

"You're Not The Boss of Me"




The comments from AHSAA director Savarese speaking sternly to a legislative committee sounded like children (brats) scream "You're Not The Boss of Me".
According to the highly educated coaches led by Savarese, laws do not apply to coaches in Alabama public schools. It's clear they write the rules for themselves, and "You're not the boss of me".  Clearly defying law and order while biting the hand that feeds them, Savarese led the charge to put legislators and people in Alabama in our proper place.
It was made clear, no one will tell Savarese and Alabama High School Coaches what to do and certainly can't make laws that have oversight of these highly educated coaches who acknowledge the practice of recruiting football players (illegal activity).
Looks to me like the recruiting efforts should be for quality teachers if we want a sound education system.
What exactly did Savarese have to say on the Hill?..........(a few statements from the full article)
Savarese said he couldn't tell lawmakers all that is being considered, though, as the AHSAA board will vote on bylaw changes on April 12 that could have an effect on the direction the AHSAA takes on this issue.
Savarese said all 51 state high school athletic associations have been looked at for best practices and believes any rules developed about postseason competition should be handled by the AHSAA, not the legislature. 
"I have full faith in our membership to develop, to create, to analyze the data to develop those rules for the future," Savarese said. 
Whorton acknowledged those coaches in attendance who oppose the bill, but said he had talked with over a hundred coaches who want the bill to pass.
Those coaches are afraid to testify in support of the bill in fear of retaliation, Whorton said, adding, "Something's wrong with the system when you can't get any coach who wants this done" to testify...
The discussion turned to the problem of recruiting. "Recruiting is at its worst as it's ever been in the history of Alabama, and anybody who denies that is living in a dream world," committee member Rep. Jim Patterson, R-Meridianville, said.
Lawmakers asked coaches to acknowledge there is recruiting in both public and private school sports, and while coaches did acknowledge it happens, those attending said they did not participate in recruiting. 
Comparing the pools from which the smaller public schools draw students to the pools from which the smaller private schools draw students, Rep. Ed Henry, R-Hartselle, said, "At the end of the day, we are responsible for the public schools and keeping government out of the private schools. If you can't protect the public schools from an unfair playing advantage, I think at some level it's our responsibility." 
Read full article at:   

Leslie M. Shoals

*****


A few readers have sent up a copy of a video currently floating around on FB that depicts a Franklin County school bus doing excessive speed on a narrow, serpentine county road. There's some controversy about just how fast a school bus can go. Before we post the video, we're asking readers with any knowledge of erratic driving in any county or the mechanics of governors on these buses to contact us with your stories.




Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Daniel Rosser/Wedding Registry Offices




First, we want to offer a sincere apology to Colbert County Probate Judge Daniel Rosser. We missed his announcement to us that he would be moving from the Alabama Democratic Party to the Republican. This is a transition that many Alabama politicians have made, and we believe Daniel will continue to serve the people of Colbert County for years to come.

Judge Rosser has always made himself available to us and the press to answer questions and provide us with important information. We believe him to be a man of intelligence, integrity, and insight. We have no idea if Daniel will face opposition in the next general election, but we cannot think of anyone who is more qualified than he.

Thank you, Daniel, for all you do!

*****

We see that some in our legislature are opposing the abolition of traditional marriage licenses. Their rationale? How do you prove a marriage exists without a returned marriage license? It's very simple. The bride and groom sign the register, as they've been doing in the U.K. for years, and the document is just as official as the returned license when notarized. Copies are just as easily made of a registry contract as of the license.

Will this modernization of the process come about? We don't know, but it's a bill we support.




Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Needless Abortion Laws from Useless Legislators




The Alabama legislature recently concluded Pro-Life Day. One of the four pro-life laws passed stated that medical personnel couldn't be forced into participating in an induced abortion. This included physicians, nurses, and techs, but we'll guess the law was aimed at the latter two. So was this law needed, and will it work?

From the last year that statistics are available we see that abortions are performed nationally in:

1. Family planning clinics commonly called abortion clinics
2. Other clinics
3. Hospitals
4. Physicians' offices

Alabama reported that nine such facilities were available in the state in 2014, five of them being abortion clinics. That means that the remaining four fall into the last three categories named. We're guessing these four in our state are "other clinics" that somehow fly under the radar of the controversial name abortion clinic, but we don't know for sure. For the sake of argument, let's say that at least one is a hospital or obstetrician's office.

We're sure anyone seeking employment in a family planning clinic knows that abortions are performed there. What about the nurse or tech who goes to work in a physician's office or hospital and then finds that assisting in an abortion is mandatory? The new law says they can't be fired for refusing. Sounds good, doesn't it?

But wait! Alabama is a right to work state. That mean's you can be fired on your employer's whim. Sure, you can sue under the new law, but you won't win. You'll just be out money you can't afford to lose, plus have to sit in court while your former employer relates every incident he/she can think of where you were late, back talked, picked up the wrong instrument first...you get the idea.

For once, just for once, could our legislature concentrate on a workable budget? Is that too much to ask? Oh, wait, this is Alabama; it probably is.