These are some stories from the 10/4/12 version of Tennessee Valley news update (633, 733, 833am, 304, 404, 504, 604pm) …
ATHENS, Ala – Agriculture experts are predicting a bountiful year for northern Alabama’s cotton crop. The Athens News Courier reports that heavy rain this week forced some farmers to delay harvesting another week or two. However, planters say the fall rain has been welcome after a scorching summer that featured consistent heat and little rain. Eric Schavey, regional extension agent for northwest Alabama, predicts a solid cotton crop this year. He said less rain over the coming days would be more beneficial to the cotton crops.
BOAZ, Ala. - The mayor of Boaz has a new plan for the once thriving outlets in his city, WHNT reports. Mayor Tim Walker wants to tear down all but three of the buildings, and replace them with basketball courts, an aquatic complex with indoor and outdoor pools, and other recreational facilities. Walker stated, “[Outlets have] been reinvented so many times, that where Boaz was a great, perfect location at one time, it’s not anymore.” He said the shopping center will not be drawing in new stores, but city officials want to take all that space of the old stores and turn it into something attractive and useful to the city. Mayor Walker wants the city to purchase the outlet buildings and land for about 2 million dollars.
HUNTSVILLE Ala . - The Huntsville Madison County Veterans Memorial board is accepting mementos to be buried in a time capsule on Veterans’ Day. AL.com reports that items selected for the time capsule should be unique and of historical significance, particularly as it relates to the time period and Madison County. All items not selected for the time capsule will be returned to their donors. An open house will be held at the memorial today from 5 to 7 PM and items for the time capsule will be collected during the event.
MARSHALL COUNTY AL - Two parks in Marshall County affected by the 2011 tornadoes are receiving state grants for funding. One of the grants includes $50,000 for a special needs playground in Guntersville. Just over $68,000 will be going to help renovate Lake Guntersville State Park, also damaged by the tornado.
MONTGOMERY AL - Health officials are expecting to find more cases of a rare and deadly form of meningitis that has sickened more than two dozen people in five states. Four have died. All received steroid injections, mostly for back pain, a fairly typical treatment. The type of meningitis involved is not contagious like the more common forms. This type is caused by a fungus often found in leaf mold and which health officials suspect may have been in the steroid. Eighteen of the cases, two of the them fatal, are in Tennessee, where a Nashville clinic received the largest shipment of the steroid.
MONTGOMERY AL - Alabama's so-called "scarlet letter list," which was supposed to name illegal immigrants who had run-ins with the law, has yet to see a single name posted on a state website. A spokesman for the Administrative Office of Courts, which compiles the list, said the court system had "no cases" to report for the last quarter. Lawmakers approved the controversial list when they made changes to Alabama's immigration law last spring.