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Top News Links: Monday, August 27

Schools closed, businesses open at Gulf Coast awaits Isaac

Schools closed across the Gulf Coast Monday in response to a hurricane warning and mandatory evacuations issued by Gov. Robert Bentley, evacuations that include all of downtown Mobile; port preps facilities for storm. — Mobile Press-Register

Alabama leads nation for prescription narcotic use

A study by Express Scripts showed an average of 1.17 prescriptions per person for opioid drugs, compared to 0.67 in the nation as a whole. — Birmingham News

A-pology for A-cookies

Northport baker who decorated goodies with an Alabama-style A got a cease-and-desist order, followed by an apology from the University of Alabama. —Tuscaloosa News

Bankruptcy change for Center Stage

The owner of Center Stage Alabama in Dothan says he wants out of Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceeding, since he can't meet the required payments after a state raid that confiscated gambling machines and cash. — Dothan Eagle

Far-reaching effects of Alabama immigration law slowly being curtailed

Alabama's law, designed to make everyday life so cumbersome that illegal immigrants would leave, has been reigned in by federal court decisions. — New York Times

Department of Justice opens civil rights unit in Birmingham

The U.S. Department of Justice has opened a civil rights unit in Birmingham, partly in response to the state's immigration law. — Main Justice

Citizens continue fight against Conecuh landfill

Conecuh activists met with Auburn University experts to discuss waste management standards, as they fight a huge landfill planned for their county. — Anniston Star

Strange praises air pollution ruling

Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange lauded a court of appeals ruling that curtailed Environmental Protection Agency attempts to crack down on air pollution from power plants, saying the state should develop its own plan. — Athens Banner Herald

Louisiana hoteliers protest BP settlement

Louisiana and Florida hotel operators protest at BP company headquarters, saying they've been left out the settlement for BP's massive Gulf oil spill. – Houston Chronicle

Alabama tax provision overruled

A section of Alabama's immigration law that  prohibited a business from claiming a tax deduction for wages and benefits paid to an illegal immigrant has been overruled by the federal appeals court. — Journal of Accountancy

LEED Silver for Faulkner State building

White-Spunner Construction Inc. has completed a new $6 million classroom and administrative complex at Faulkner State Community College in just 10 months, winning LEED Silver certification in the process.  — White-Spunner PR

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