Do a little turn on the catwalk in the new issue of Lagniappe, where we feature Mobile Fashion Week before it kicks off next week, turning Dauphin and Royal streets into Mobile’s fashion mecca. We sit down with founder Richard McGill to discuss MFW and what it means for Mobile, a place he believes is home to many talented people whose talents don’t always have an outlet when it comes to fashion. In Bay Briefs, layoffs at the Mobile Housing Board raise management questions, and a lack of diversity in the Mobile Fire-Rescue Department is examined. We also have Mobile City Council updates and details on the Mobile County Public School System budget. In Commentary, we’ve got tips on how to be a better Jag fan and Rob assesses recent inflammatory remarks from Mobile’s Public Safety Director. In Cuisine, Cammie’s Old Dutch and Fairhope are teaming up to break a Guinness world record by creating and eating the world’s largest ice cream sundae, and Andy has some tips on how to make the perfect roux. Artifice highlights Susan Howell, a creative mom and an award-winning artist who is making waves in the community, and in our music feature, we interview former Gossip Girl actress Taylor Momsen, who talks about her music career ahead of the Sept. 23 performance of her band, The Pretty Reckless, at Soul Kitchen. Last but certainly not least, Boozie has all the tailgating gossip from last weekend’s football sellout at Ladd-Peebles Stadium. Thanks for supporting your favorite weekly newspaper! LAGNIAPPE IS ONLINE AND ON STANDS NOW!
Authorities have confirmed that the body of a young girl found today has been identified as 8-year-old Hiawayi Robinson.
At approximately 12 p.m., the search for Hiawayi ended when “regrettably” her body was recovered near Turner and Rebel roads, Prichard Mayor Troy Ephriam said at a news conference this afternoon.
A retrial for a former death row inmate was delayed at least two more months today because the Mobile County District Attorney’s office wasn’t prepared to make a decision on pursuing the death penalty against William John Ziegler a second time.
Ziegler was previously convicted and sentenced to death for the 2000 murder of Allen Baker in West Mobile, but after two unsuccessful appeals Mobile Circuit Court Judge Sarah Stewart ordered a new trial when the first was found to have “violated Ziegler’s constitutional rights” following a “Rule 32” hearing.
The Alabama State Department of Education (ALSDE) has confirmed an ongoing investigation into recent allegations of cheating in the Mobile County Public School System.
It’s been reported the allegations came from a former MCPSS principal, but Lagniappe has not been able to confirm that at this time.
Despite an increase in state and local revenues, a $719 million budget approved last week has the Mobile County Public School System scheduled to spend more money than it expects to receive in fiscal year 2015. Approved by the Mobile County school board last week, the FY 2015 budget shows a beginning fund balance of $165 million, but even after an additional $630 million in revenue, the system in on track to end the year with only $75 million in all five of its designated funds. (more…) Continue Reading →
Next Tuesday Orange Beach will hold a referendum vote aimed at creating a city-run school system, but some residents still aren’t sold on the idea or the increased taxes separating from Baldwin County Schools would require. Rumors and what some have called “deliberate misinformation from Baldwin County Schools” have become an issue in the waning days of the campaign launched by city leaders in January. The committee for Orange Beach Educational Excellence (OBEE) was created earlier in the year and has been at the forefront of the push for a “yes” vote in the coming referendum. Still, some residents feel the idea has been pushed on them by a “well organized and well-funded” effort from the city’s leadership only seven years after residents voted down a split from the county school system with the City of Gulf Shores. “This was attempted in 2007, and there was something of a landslide vote against it,” resident, and city school system opponent John Stever said. Continue Reading →
With the city of Mobile’s racial demographics over 50 percent black, according to the United States Census Bureau, the city’s executive director of public safety has openly endorsed more minority hiring within the Mobile Fire-Rescue and Mobile Police departments. Retired Rear Adm. Richard Landolt, who was hired in July by Mayor Sandy Stimpson to supervise both departments, told Lagniappe one of his overall goals is making these entities more diversified “without sacrificing quality of any sort either.”
(more…) Continue Reading →
The Mobile City Council on Tuesday approved funding the county soccer complex project with $1.5 million from $3 million in capital funds originally set aside for park improvements. Councilwoman Bess Rich introduced the amendment to the fiscal year 2015 budget, which was approved by a 5-2 vote. Rich said she introduced the amendment because she had heard Mayor Sandy Stimpson talk about replacing grass soccer fields at Medal of Honor Park with turf fields. She said she thought this was a better use of the capital money because the plan is to have three turf fields at the proposed complex. Councilmen Joel Daves and John Williams voted against the amendment. Continue Reading →
The Mobile City Council passed the fiscal year 2015 budget, by a 6-1 vote Tuesday, after making significant changes to funding for retiree healthcare and non-profit organizations through performance contracts. Councilwoman Bess Rich was the lone dissenting vote. During a pre-conference meeting on Tuesday, Rich suggested holding the vote over for a week to allow more time to discuss it and make the public aware of the changes. She also criticized passing the budget, while Mayor Sandy Stimpson was in Washington D.C. lobbying for the I-10 bridge project. Before the budget vote, councilors approved to extend for three years a one-cent sales tax increase that would result in a 17 percent increase for consumers in the city. Continue Reading →
A 15-year veteran of the Mobile Police Department was terminated effective immediately after a Trial Board found him guilty of five major violations, Mobile Police Chief James Barber announced today. (more…) Continue Reading →