It is Friday February 23, 2024.

With the beginning of Alabama's Primary Severe Weather Season a week from today, this weekend is the perfect time to utilize the annual Severe Weather Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday to get prepared. The tax holiday began at 12:01 this morning and runs until midnight on Sunday.

Below are some of the items exempt from state and local sales taxes (NOTE: Not all communities have removed local taxes) this weekend. To find out if your county is participating in the 2024 Alabama Severe Weather Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday visit here.:

Covered Items:

  1. Portable generators: These are essential for power backup during severe weather events.
  2. Battery-powered weather radios: These devices keep you informed about weather alerts even if the power goes out.
  3. Flashlights and lanterns: Necessary for emergency lighting.
  4. First aid kits: Vital for addressing injuries during emergencies.
  5. Cell phone chargers: Ensures communication during power outages.
  6. Tarps and plastic sheeting: Useful for covering damaged roofs or windows.
  7. Duct tape: Handy for temporary repairs.
  8. Plywood, window film, and other materials: Used for protecting windows and doors.
  9. Non-electric food storage coolers: Keep perishable food safe during power outages.
  10. Batteries (AAA, AA, C, D, 6-volt, and 9-volt): Essential for powering various devices.
  11. Smoke detectors and fire extinguishers: Crucial for safety.
  12. Carbon monoxide detectors: Detects dangerous gas leaks.
  13. Ground anchor systems and tie-down kits: Secure outdoor items during storms.
  14. Reusable ice packs: Useful for preserving perishable food.
  15. Portable self-powered light sources (e.g., candles, flashlights): Ensure visibility during blackouts.
  16. Fuel containers: Necessary for storing fuel for generators or vehicles.
  17. Cell phone batteries and chargers: Keep communication devices functional.
  18. Manual can openers: For accessing canned food without electricity.
  19. Storm shutter devices: Protect windows from damage.
  20. Cell phone batteries and chargers: Keep communication devices functional.

Click the website of the Alabama Department of Revenue for a detailed list.

Severe weather will not be a problem this weekend, but computer models are indicating there could be severe weather mid-week next week.

The Forecast:

Today: Partly sunny, then gradually becoming sunny, with a high near 69. Northwest wind 10 to 15 mph.

Tonight: Mostly clear, with a low around 45. West wind 5 to 10 mph.

Saturday: Sunny, with a high near 63. Northwest wind 5 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 25 mph.

Saturday Night: Clear, with a low around 36. Northwest wind 5 to 10 mph becoming light and variable in the evening.

Sunday: Sunny, with a high near 70. Southeast wind around 5 mph becoming south in the afternoon.

Sunday Night: Mostly clear, with a low around 49.

Next Week: We will start the week with a sunny Monday, but clouds begin to build Monday night through Tuesday night. This will lead to a chance for showers and thunderstorms Wednesday and Thursday. Some thunderstorms could reach severe limits. Highs will be mid to upper 70s with lows mid 40s to upper 50s.


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Topping the News:

The United Auto Workers Executive Board will pour $40 million into attempting to unionize the non-union auto and battery producing plants in Alabama and across the south, including Mercedes. The union asserts Tuscaloosa’s Mercedes plant and other auto producers in Alabama are making massive profits and not sharing them with workers whose wages are not keeping pace with inflation. UAW claims more than 30% of Mercedes employees back the union.


 

Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin is urging black athletes to leave the University of Alabama and other colleges in the state if the legislature passes a pending law that would prohibit diversity, equity and inclusion programs on Alabama college campuses.

In a social media post Woodfin likened the bill to Gov. George Wallace’s schoolhouse door stand at Foster Auditorium. During floor debate Greensboro State Senator Bobby Singleton told senators the bill that would prohibit teaching that slavery and racism have been systemic.is divisive. The bill now goes to the house for debate.


 

Last week’s Alabama Supreme Court ruling that frozen embryos created through invitro fertilization are legally considered children is prompting backlash in and out of the state.

President Joe Biden on Thursday blasted the ruling, calling it "outrageous and unacceptable."

Alabama's pro-life Republican U.S. Senator did not comment on her feelings about the ruling but issued as a statement, "“Ultimately, IVF helps create life and grow families, and it deserves the protection of the law."

A bill filed by Alabama House Republicans would provide that any fertilized human egg or human embryo outside of a uterus “is not considered an unborn child or human being for any purpose under state law.”


 

 

 

West Alabama Democrat Congresswoman Terri Sewell has delivered a $258,810 from The United States Department of Justice to the City of Tuscaloosa to implement a mental health court.

The funding will be used to design and implement the city’s Mental Health Court Initiative to reduce legal entanglements for persons with mental health issues.

Sewell noted, "This will go a long way in transforming how we handle mental health in the criminal justice system, and I hope their work will serve as a model for communities across AL."

Sewell was joined by Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox, Tuscaloosa city council and a representative of the Tuscaloosa Police Department to announce the grant funding.


 

Kentuck has announced the 53rd Kentuck Festival of the Arts will be conducted October 19-20 at Snow Hinton Park on McFarland Blvd. in Tuscaloosa. The City of Tuscaloosa is providing $100,000 to the festival that previously was held in Northport since its inception.


 

TPD is still searching for missing 14-year-old Mariah Mason. The black female was last known to be in Westlee Estate and could be near Sahama Village.

Mason is described as 5 feet tall and weighing approximately 100 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes.

Call (205 349-2121 if you have information as to her whereabouts.


 


Topping Sports:

Coleman Coliseum will be bathed in pink tonight for 10th ranked Alabama Gymnastics meet with arch-rival 18th ranked Georgia. It is the Power of Pink meet to raise breast cancer awareness. The meet begins at 7:00.


 

17th ranked Alabama Baseball opens a 3-game stand against Valparaiso at 4:00 this afternoon at the Joe.

Meanwhile, the 10th ranked Tide Softball team plays five games this weekend in the Green and Gold Classic at UAB.


 

The Alabama women's basketball team fell to No. 1/1 South Carolina, 72-44, on Thursday night in Colonial Life Area.

The Crimson Tide (20-8, 7-6 SEC) were led by Jessica Timmons on both sides of the ball with 20 points, eight rebounds and two steals, while Loyal McQueen also scored in double figures (15) during her return to her home state.


 

Media in Kentucky are calling tomorrow afternoon's visit by 13th ranked Alabama the biggest game of the season for the Wildcats. 17th ranked UK is hopes to bounce back from a buzzer beating loss to LSU Wednesday night.

The Tide will be looking for better defensive play in order to get a big road win and stay in 1st place in the SEC race.

Gametime is 3:00pm on the Crimson Tide Sports Network on 95.3 The Bear, 100.9 The Tide and 1230AM WTBC.


Alabama Basketball Center Mohamed Wague will not suit up for tomorrow's game at Kentucky. He has been officially suspended by the SEC for one game after committing a "fighting act" during the Tide's nailbiter victory over the Florida Gators Wednesday night.

Also, Alabama's Latrell Wrightsell Jr.'s availability for Saturday's matchup is unclear. He is recovering from an injury.


 

Former UA Football play-by-play radio broadcaster Eli Gold has a new gig. As he first revealed yesterday on Townsquare Media Tuscaloosa's 95.3 The Bear with Steve and DC and on the Gary Harris Show on 100.9 The Tide, Eli has accepted a job offer from a pro team. He will become the new voice of the Nashville Kats of the Arena Football League for the 2024 season.

Gold spent 35 years as the iconic voice of Alabama Football before being replaced by Christ Stewart yesterday.


 

Have a great and safe weekend! ROLL TIDE!!