• 61°

Capitol Report for May 29

By Sen. Roger Bedford

For the FCT

It was certainly an honor to speak at the Hackleburg High School Baccalaureate Ceremony this past week. I am very proud of the Hackleburg senior class because of their perseverance and determination. Like the senior class of Phil Campbell, they have not only had to live through the destruction of the horrible tornado that ripped through both of the communities, but also they have had to continue their education in temporary classrooms. Several of the seniors shared with me stories of difficult times within the temporary structures but all of them looked on with joy at their future graduating classmates who will be graduating from brand new high schools at Hackleburg and Phil Campbell. I want to be sure to thank all the ministers in attendance that evening at the Baccalaureate ceremony but especially Pastor Sam Morgan at the Hackleburg First Baptist Church which opened their beautiful sanctuary for this important and meaningful occasion.

It was an honor for me to join Representative Johnny Mack Morrow to announce Governor Bentley’s appointment of Patricia Montgomery to the Bear Creek Development Authority. Mrs. Montgomery will represent the state well and help us bring in tourism dollars to boost our local economy. Governor Bentley said in part of his appointment letter of Mrs. Montgomery, “Appointing you to this position comes with great responsibility because you will be making important decisions that affect the citizens of Alabama. Honesty and integrity are two virtues that I prioritize for my administration to exemplify, and I know that you will do the same while in service to our great state.” I could not agree with the Governor more.

As always it was a pleasure to see the fine men and women of American Legion Post 11 in Colbert County during their fine Memorial Day service. I also enjoyed, as I did last year, having the opportunity to have lunch with them at their upstairs office in downtown Tuscumbia. I was moved by the stirring remarks by the young marine who was the keynote speaker.

I am very saddened to see the sad state of healthcare for our fine veterans that I am seeing on the national news. Our veterans deserve good and effective healthcare. I hope that the President and Congress will thoroughly investigate this matter and will appropriately fire the people who have misused their positions as well as work to improve the overall healthcare delivery system to our fine veterans. They deserve no less.

I am pleased to announce that the Alabama Department of Transportation will accept bids on May 30 for the following important highway projects in our Senate District: In Winston County the highway work will be on the resurfacing and traffic striping on County Road 69, also known as Newburg Road from 11th Avenue to the Franklin County Line.

In Colbert County the project is the resurfacing and traffic striping on State Road 2, also known as US 72, from .26 miles east of County Road 1, MP 2.434 to County Road 5 MP 5.300.

In Marion County there will be a resurfacing and traffic striping project on State Road 17 in Hackleburg from Old Hackleburg Road MP 291.400 to 70 feet east of North Street MP 291.800.

All of these projects are much needed in our district and I was pleased to work with the State and County officials to secure these projects, which will lead to greater safety on our roads and bridges.

It is a pleasure to see so many of our fine seniors graduating from high schools across our Senate District and the great state of Alabama. Our seniors have worked hard to achieve this important milestone in their life. It is important for us to recognize their work and congratulate them on this achievement while also encouraging them to further their academic and vocational education. A special congratulation also goes out to the family members of our graduates, whose support, love and backing helped enable these fine young men and women meet this important milestone in their lives.  As such graduates, I hope you will take the time to say thanks to the parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles and other family support members.

I recently attended a jobs fair program in the Shoals area where high school students were shown the great career opportunities that are available through vocational tech and career tech programs. Skill traits such as robotic repair, iron working, carpentry and computer programming are just a few examples of areas where there is a growing shortage of trained labor. This is also true in the health care industry, and that is one of the reasons we see so many of our fine students going into the field of nursing and physical therapy. As our population continues to age in America as well as Alabama the need for more healthcare workers continues to grow. All of these are examples of good jobs, which pay good wages that will allow you to raise your family well.

Thank you all for contacting me and please continue to do so.