Senator Roger Bedford

Capitol Report

Friday, June 4, 2010

This past week, June 1, brought to a conclusion the first part of the political process with the primary elections. I want to first congratulate the families and the candidates who offered themselves on both the Democrat and Republican side of the ticket for all offices. One of the great freedoms we have in America thanks to our brave veterans is the right to run for office and serve if elected. It is one of the freedoms that make our country so strong.

We will have a runoff election date on July 13 with the General Election in November. As I have said many times before and have heard from the families and candidates who ran for office, if everyone would run for office once or have a close friend or family member who did, we would have 90 percent plus turnouts on election day. Campaigns can be quite a bit of work and I always enjoy seeing the family members out supporting their candidates.

It was also good to see so many young people at the political rallies this year. I think that is a very positive sign about the strength of our communities.

Unfortunately, the BP Oil disaster in the Gulf continues. The oil has already reached epic proportions being a great deal larger and worst than the Valdez spill in Alaska some twenty years ago. Property values, lifestyles as well as the environment itself is under threat from this spill. I am concerned also that the tons of chemicals that have been put in the water to disperse the oil will be just as toxic as the oil itself. We are so blessed to have such wonderful beaches and great seafood in the Gulf but, thanks to BPs negligence, all of that is threatened possibly for years to come. There are multiple internet sites in which you can get constant updates on the developments in the Gulf including one by BP as well as one by the Alabama Port Authority. Should you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact my office and I will be happy to help all that I can.

This past week, saw the announcement of five grants in our senate district from the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs. They are as follows:

$25,000 for the Franklin County Commission to purchase equipment for seven patrol vehicles

$24,616 for the Lamar County Commission to purchase equipment for the police department

$25,000 for the Fayette County Commission to purchase fingerprint scanning equipment to meet the requirements of the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006.

$23,414.08 to the City of Guin to purchase e-citation equipment, in-car video cameras and digital cameras

$1,977.50 for the University of North Alabama to purchase bullet proof vests for the University Police Department

I am pleased to see these much needed grants which will greatly assist our fine area law enforcement officers in protecting the lives and property of citizens. You may rest assured that I will keep fighting to bring our tax dollars home to Northwest Alabama.

I want to congratulate the Burnout Volunteer Fire Department on being awarded a $653,040 federal grant from the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program. The funds are currently expected to be used to update communication equipment across Franklin County and may be shared with other Franklin County volunteer fire departments.

I also want to congratulate the Phil Campbell campus of Northwest Shoals Community College which has been awarded $92,500 to implement a welding and machine tool technology program. The funds come from the Department of Postsecondary Education for workforce training. This will help train and upgrade the training of our workers for better paying jobs.

We must continue to fight to bring in new jobs and keep the ones we already have.

It is good to see the ongoing commitment to education and community services which these grants represent.

Please continue to contact me at the following:

Alabama State House
11 S. Union Street
Suite 730
Montgomery, AL 36130

Phone: 334-242-7862

Fax: 334-242-4736

Russellville Office

PO Box 370

Russellville, AL 35653

Phone: 256-332-6966

Fax: 256-332-6967