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The Millbrook Independent

May 28th
State falls short again
Written by News Desk   
Saturday, 15 March 2014 10:10

bobmartinBy: Bob Martin, Publisher

For the sixth consecutive year, global well-being improvement leader Healthways and management consulting firm Gallup have released their analysis of the state of well-being across the United States. The analysis is based on data from the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index, a definitive measure and empiric database of real-time changes in well-being throughout the world.

More than 178,000 interviews nationwide fueled the 2013 analysis, which examined Americans' perceptions on topics such as physical and emotional health, healthy behaviors, work environment, social and community factors, financial security, and access to necessities such as food, shelter and healthcare to create a composite well-being rank for each state.

Launched in 2008, the Well-Being Index provides unmatched, in-depth insight into the well-being of populations. Gallup conducted 500 telephone interviews a day with Americans to gather their perceptions of well-being, for a resulting sample that represents an estimated 95 percent of all U.S. households. In 2013, Gallup and Healthways extended the reach of the Well-Being Index beyond the United States; global leaders now have the ability to benchmark the well-being of their country against the results of roughly 140 countries around the world.

The full "State of American Well-Being: 2013 State, Community and Congressional District Analysis," as well as state-level reports, will be available online in April. Look for the "State of Global Well-Being" reports this summer.

Alabama is ranked at No. 47, just ahead of Mississippi, Kentucky and West Virginia. The top four were North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska and Minnesota. But don't worry folks; we're still ahead in football.

Common Core issues arise at State House

The education budget approved by the Senate last Thursday would prohibit K-12 public schools from expanding their use of Common Core curriculum standards. The standards, part of Alabama's College-and-Career-Ready standards, apply only to math and English. Most states use the standards. The budget bill says schools will not use Common Core in any other subjects when those standards are written. "There's been a lot of concern about that issue and I think it is time to take a deep breath," said Sen. Trip Pittman, chairman of the education budget committee. "Let's see where we are. At this point there are no other standards; only are the math and English standards that have become part of the college and career ready.

"Let's get our hands around what we're doing. Let's make sure it's working and we're committed to them," said Pittman.

State School Superintendent Tommy Bice disagrees and opposes the restrictions in Piittmans amendment. "I do not support a budget attempting to set education policy in our state, as that role belongs to the state Board of Education upon recommendation from those who are experts in their respective disciplines," Bice said. Common Core opponents make several arguments, including that the state loses some autonomy over setting standards and that states use the Common Core as a way to attract federal and private grants.

Chief Justice Moore wants to ban gay marriage

The political newsletter Inside Alabama Politics published a recent item saying that Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore must have been allowed "off the reservation" again, similar to when he refused remove to his Ten Commandments monument from the State Judicial Building.

The newsletter reports that Chief Justice Moore has written letters to the governors of all 50 states, urging them to pass an amendment to the U.S. Constitution that would ban gay marriage. Moore's letter calls on the governors to work with their legislatures to pass resolutions calling for an Article V Constitutional Convention for the purpose of passing a Constitutional Amendment that would define marriage as only between one man and one woman.

It would take 34 states to get the convention called and 38 states to ratify any such Constitutional Amendment.

Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange is fuming over the General Fund Budget as approved in the House Ways and Means Committee recently. The budget as proposed by Gov. Bentley was zero and would require him to replace that money with $7 million from a national settlement he has received from five big mortgage companies.

And in closing this week we say goodbye to Charles McCrary. the longtime CEO of Alabama Power Company who is retiring. He will be succeeded by Mark Crosswhite this month.

Bob Martin is editor and publisher of The Montgomery Independent. E-mail him at: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Last Updated on Saturday, 15 March 2014 10:24
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