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Top News Links: Friday, August 31

Texas voter ID law overturned

A federal court panel has overturned Texas' stringent voter ID law; Alabama's similar law also under scrutiny. — New York Times

Mayor says VictoryLand to reopen

The mayor of Tuskegee told WNCF TV that VictoryLand plans to reopen later this year, after settlement of a civil lawsuit against the gaming establishment and its owner, and that the facility will use the same electronic machines that are used in casinos operated by the Poarch Band of Creek Indians. — WNCF TV

Auburn to add medical school

Via College of Osteopathic Medicine will open a branch campus at Auburn, sharing research facilities with Auburn faculty; first class of 150 students to start in 2015. New medical school in Dothan expected to open in 2013.  — Birmingham News, Dothan Eagle

Siegelman off to Democratic convention

Former Gov. Don Siegelman, who is to report to prison in September to finish his sentence, received special permission from a federal judge to attend the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, where he hopes to appeal to the President to grant him clemency. — al.com

Allstate, State Farm bear brunt of Isaac insurance costs

Allstate and State Farm insurance companies, which cover 39 percent of market in Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana, expected to bear brunt of cost of Hurricane Isaac damage, now estimated between $300 million and $7.5 billion. — Credit Union Times

Landmark Austal ship passes sea tests

The first Joint High Speed Vessel built at Austal USA has successfully completed sea trials by the U.S. Navy. — Marine Link

Alabama among victors in $181 million drug settlement

Janssen Pharmaceuticals settles with 36 states for $181 million over claims that it promoted its drugs for unapproved uses. — Indianapolis Business Journal

Callis Communications wins kudos

Mobile-based Callis Communications earned a spot on the Inc. list of fastest growing companies, ranked 70th among telecommunications firms and 2,322 overall. — PR Web

Chance of fed contracts brings full house to pre-proposal meeting

More than 600 people attended a pre-proposal meeting last week in Huntsville to learn how to go after work under a $7 billion U.S. Army Corps of Engineers contract for renewable energy projects. — USACE PR

Alabama consumers uncertain

A company measuring consumer distress ranks Alabama 10th among the most distressed states. — Birmingham Business Journal

ServisFirst adds op center in Birmingham, adds Mobile operations

ServisFirst Bank has added a Birmingham operations center at the Protective Center on U.S. 280 South and moved into Mobile with a new loan operation and a loan office in Mobile. — ServisFirst PR; Birmingham Business Journal

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