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Headlines from Alabama 810 News
- Legislature passes “Sheldon and Haley Pugh
- Sheriff closes Work Center
- Jacksonville asks for voluntary water
- Arson suspected in woods fire
Legislature passes “Sheldon and Haley Pugh
Alabama Senate Tuesday passed house bill 848, which creates a funding
mechanism to establish a program for mentally disturbed individuals
who are a danger to themselves and others. In a press conference
Wednesday afternoon, Calhoun County Sheriff Larry Amerson said he has
been pushing for the legislation for almost two years. The
bill adds a four dollar fee to certain transactions in the probate
judges office to fund the program. The legislation is legally termed
as the “Sheldon and Haley Pugh Act of Calhoun County”, named for the
two young children tragically killed in 2005 when a mentally disturbed
man killed them both and their mother. The
Bill is named for Sheldon and Haley
Pugh, killed in January 2005
grandmother, Myra Pugh had formed a group of supporters to join
the sheriff in pushing for passage of the legislation. A committee,
consisting of the Executive Director of the County Mental Health
Board, the Sheriff, the Probate Judge, a member of the legislative
delegation and a resident of the county will comprise the Mental
health advisory board. The fees collected are earmarked for crisis
intervention services, which would include the appointment of a county
mental health officer.
Sheriff closes Work Center
County Sheriff ←Larry
Amerson Wednesday announced that the recent escape of two inmates
from the jail's work center→
has forced him to take a hard look at jail operations. Amerson said
the work center shutdown will affect inmates working outside the
jail facility and in the community. Amerson said that he has met with
the Calhoun county commissioners and that they agree that he needs
more staff to adequately operate the jail, but that they do not have
the money to fund it. Amerson said that to property staff the
department, including the jail operations, he said he would need 70
deputies, the department currently had 38 deputies on staff. The
sheriff said that he and the county commission are investigating other
funding alternatives and will be meeting with the local legislative
Jacksonville asks for voluntary water
Faced with a drop in water from a spring which
feeds a portion of the city water system, Jacksonville Mayor Johnny
Smith Tuesday night called for voluntary conservation measures from
the cities water customers. Smith is urging Jacksonville water
customers to curtail outdoor use of water between 8am and 7pm. Smith
said that runoff at the big spring in the city has dropped
Arson suspected in woods fire
Authorities said yesterday they believe arson was
to blame for a fire that burned about 140 acres of forest around a
national preserve in northeast Alabama. And officials reopened part of
Interstate 20 that was closed because of smoke from another blaze.
Both fires were mostly extinguished, but officials said the drought
covering north Alabama put the area at risk for more wildfires.
Meanwhile, citing continued dry weather and smoke blowing into the
state from fires in southern Georgia and northern Florida, the Alabama
Department of Environmental Management warned that the very young, the
elderly and people with respiratory problems should limit outdoor
activity until conditions improve. Authorities are trying to
determine who caused a fire that threatened hundreds of acres of hilly
woodland in the Little River National Preserve, located in extreme
northeast Alabama. In east Alabama, a fire was still smoldering
along I-20 but conditions were improved from Monday, when five miles
of an eastbound lane had to be closed in Calhoun and Cleburne counties
because of smoke from a roadside blaze.
The Alabama 810
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