Tennessee Valley News Week in Review 7-21-23
Catch up on the week's biggest stories about people, places, events and activities happening in Huntsville and the Tennessee Valley.
An Alabama inmate was executed early Friday morning for the 2001 beating death of a Harvest woman. The state carried out its first lethal injection after a pause in executions following a string of problems with inserting the IVs. WHNT TV reports James Barber was cleared for execution by Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall at 1:34 a.m. at Holman Correctional Facility in Atmore. He was declared dead at 1:56 a.m. It is the first execution scheduled in the state since Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey paused executions in November to conduct an internal review.
Jody Singer, NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center Director, announced her retirement Monday. After more than 38 years of service, her retirement will become effective July 29. Singer was appointed as the first female center director at Marshall in 2018, after serving as deputy director from 2016 to 2018. Marshall’s current deputy center director, Joseph Pelfrey, will serve as the interim acting director until Singer’s successor is identified through a nationwide search and open competition.
Thirty-eight Alabama school districts have been selected to receive grant money made available through the $1 billion federal Bipartisan Safer Communities Act. AL.com reports the Alabama Stronger Connections Grant Program funds can be used for a range of activities from drug awareness and suicide prevention to trauma-informed classroom management and reducing suspension and expulsions. In north Alabama, the Madison City School System will receive nearly three hundred ninety-eight thousand dollars. The school systems in Marshall and DeKalb Counties along with the Scottsboro City School System will receive grants of four hundred thousand dollars.
Alabama’s annual back-to-school sales tax holiday is set for Friday, July 21 through Sunday, July 23. The Alabama Retail Association says this year marks the seventh time the annual tax holiday will take place during the third weekend of July. The state waives its four percent sales tax on school-related supplies and clothing. WSFA TV in Montgomery reports more than 325 cities and counties throughout Alabama will also waive their local taxes. In some areas, the savings will be as high as 10 percent. Some clothing, school supplies, books, and computers are exempt. You can find a list of this year’s participating cities and counties and all the eligible and non-eligible items at revenue.alabama.gov.
The Invisible City's Brad Posey will showcase local musical talent at Invisible Fest. This year's event, at Fractal Brewing Project on Saturday from 6 - 10 PM, features Boozy Slufoot, Baby's Got a Knife, Wrong Brothers, Devil's Got a Hold on Me, and Swap Rats. More information is at wlrh.org.